Disney Music Group (formerly Buena Vista Music Group) is a collection of affiliated record labels all subsidiaries of The Walt Disney Company. The chairman of the group is Bob Cavallo, who reports to Alan F. Horn, the chairman of the Walt Disney Studios.
- Walt Disney Records, the flagship label of the group, was founded in 1956 (as Disneyland Records) so that Disney would not have to release through labels not associated with the studio, such as RCA Victor or Capitol Records, which had respectively issued Disney albums in the past. Under the Disneyland label, among its other recordings, the studio also released new soundtrack LP's of some of the animated Disney films, including, in 1957, a 3-LP album set of all of the classical music heard in Fantasia, perhaps the first soundtrack album containing virtually all the music from a feature-length film. (The "Meet the Soundtrack" intermission segment and the jam session were not included, and Deems Taylor's commentary was also omitted.) Disneyland Records also released cover albums (rather than soundtracks) of some of the other animated films, such as Lady and the Tramp.
In 1989, the label was renamed to its current branding. The label now releases a broad range of Disney-themed music for kids, teens and families such as soundtracks to movies made by Walt Disney Pictures, original music from artists such as They Might Be Giants, and compilations of music made popular by Radio Disney. Disney classic film soundtracks originally issued on LP have been transferred to CD under this label, rather than on the Disneyland Records or Buena Vista labels.
- Buena Vista Records, a label largely devoted to authentic soundtrack albums of mostly live-action Disney film musicals, such as Mary Poppins, The Happiest Millionaire, Summer Magic, and Babes in Toyland, as well as recordings by actors then under contract to Disney, such as Annette Funicello and Hayley Mills. Often, at the same time that Buena Vista Records released a genuine soundtrack album of one of the Disney movies, Disneyland Records, another, less expensive Disney label, would release a cover version of the songs from that film. The label was later absorbed by Walt Disney Records. It is still active today and releases various content such as Baby Einstein and karaoke CDs; it also has some recording artists. Most recently it has been employed to serve as the record label for Marvel Studios' releases such as Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger.
Hollywood Records, primarily focusing on rock, pop music, and teen artists. The label was originally primarily a soundtrack label (for Touchstone Pictures and Hollywood Pictures) with few major artists, like Queen. But under the guidance of Bob Cavallo and Abbey Konowitch, the label now releases records from a variety of major artists such as: Bridgit Mendler, Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, Selena Gomez & The Scene, Jonas Brothers, Jesse McCartney, Allstar Weekend currently and Drew Seeley, Hilary Duff, Corbin Bleu, Aly & AJ, Jordan Pruitt, Raven-Symoné, Honor Society and Ballas Hough Band in the past. Now the label also release soundtracks from Marvel Studios, 20th Century Studios and Searchlight Pictures.
Disney Music Publishing controls music compositions for Disney's music heard in movies and theme parks. Divisions include Walt Disney Music Company, Wonderland Music Company, Seven Peaks Music, Seven Summits Music, Touchstone Pictures Music & Songs, Hollywood Pictures Music, HolPic Music, Buena Vista Music Company, Fuzzy Muppet Songs, Mad Muppet Melodies, Agarita Music, FFM Publishing, F T S Music, Saban Music U.S.A., ABC Family Music, Falferious Music, Five Hundred South Songs, Balanga Music and more.
Disney Music Group did not have its own distribution network, both in its native market of the US or internationally. It had a licensing deal with Warner Bros. Records from 1995 to 2005. Furthermore, Sony Music Entertainment has been a distributor of Hollywood Records in mainland Asia. Since the expiration of the Warner Bros. agreement, the group relied on both Universal Music Group and EMI Music, given the territory.
In the United States, Disney Music Group relies on Universal Music Distribution solely for distribution, as Disney handles its own marketing and other functions. Outside of the United States, it engages in both licencing and distribution agreements with either Universal Music Group or EMI for marketing and release of its material, as the company does not have its own facilities elsewhere. Universal Music Group handles Canada, Asia (excluding Japan), South America, and India since 2005, and Australia and New Zealand since March 2009. EMI Music handles the United Kingdom, Europe, Africa and Middle East since September 2005, as well as having handled Australia and New Zealand prior to their move to Universal in 2009. The Japanese entertainment conglomerate Avex Group handles DMG's distribution in Japan since 1999.
However, as several Hollywood Records artists including Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato and Selena Gomez were eventually signed directly to Universal Music UK's Fascination Records, Europe-wide distribution for these artists is instead also handled by Universal, rather than by EMI.
Beginning 2011, Disney is distributing its own releases worldwide, except Europe where EMI Music distributes them.