For many years the song was part of an opening theme medley for the Wonderful World of Disney television program and it has often been used in other TV and video productions by the studio. It is one of many popular songs that features a bluebird ("Mr. Bluebird on my shoulder"), epitomized by the "Bluebird of Happiness," as a symbol of cheer.
The song is influenced from the chorus of the pre-Civil War folk song "Zip Coon", a "Turkey in the Straw" variation: "Zip a duden duden duden zip a duden day". "Zip Coon" is now considered racist as it plays on a derogatory slang term for African Americans.
The Kingsmen sang this song during a special episode of Fibber McGee and Molly to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the show's sponsor, S.C. Johnson Company The rendition of the song mentions the sponsor within the lyrics "It's true/It's actual/Everything is Johnson's Wax-ual."
Johnny Mercer had a #8 hit with his rendition of the song in 1947. As a result, Mercer had to correct listeners who mistakenly assumed that he wrote it.
Connie Francis recorded the song in April 1962 for her album Connie Francis sings Award Winning Motion Picture Hits. The original recording of the Francis version appeared only on the Australia and New Zealand releases of the album. On all other international releases of the album the song appears with a new orchestration (recorded in March 1963) while keeping Francis' original 1962 vocals.
The Disneyland Resort: Official Album (2008) – as part of the ride's soundtrack
Children's Yesteryear Favourites (2008) – through CRS Records
Another place it has been used is the Disney play, "Alice in Wonderland Jr.", with one small lyric change, "Mr. Bluebird" becoming "Mr. Bubble" It is also played during the Magic Kingdom Welcome Show as the show train pulls into Main Street Station. The song has also been used in parades at the theme parks: