The Singing Busts or Mellomen are a group of undead characters who appear in every version of the attraction except for Mystic Manor and whom act as the lead singers of Grim Grinning Ghosts in the Graveyard.
The Haunted Mansion
In every direct version of the Haunted Mansion, the five busts appear in the graveyard sequence singing Grim Grinning Ghosts. The lead singer of the group comes in the form of Uncle Theodore, whose bust is damaged and has its head section broken off.
In Phantom Manor, the Mellomen appear in the Underworld segment once again singing Grim Grinning Ghosts except here Cousin Algernon (Chuck Schroeder) is absent leaving the group a quartet and Uncle Theodore (Thurn Ravenscroft) is no longer broken. Instead, his bust is leaning slightly to its right, mimicking the broken head it has in the American and Japanese mansions.
During the Holiday overlay, the Busts have jack-o-lanterns placed over their heads that do the singing for them. They sing a spooky version of the Christmas carol "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" and (like the other residents) end their song with "Grim Grinning Ghosts come out to socialize!"
The Ghost Gallery
In the Ghost Gallery storyline the Busts are named Thurl, Ravens, Croft, Singg and Buss as a reference to which, when deciphered says "Thurl Ravenscroft Singing Bust" as a reference to the singer Thurl Ravenscroft who played Uncle Theodore (the lead Bust).
The busts appear in the 2003 movie but are reduced to a quartet (inspired by Phantom Manor). In the midst of their song, Jim interrupts them and tries to ask them the location of a mausoleum that leads to a crypt wherein they respond in songs. At the end of the film, they join the Evers family in their vacation (by getting strapped to the back of the car). It is unknown why they (and Madame Leota) did not go to heaven after the curse was lifted.
The Dapper Dans provide their voices in this adaption.
The busts appear in the 2003 game as a quartet again, with the Dapper Dans reprising their roles. The leader Uncle Theodore asks Zeke, the assistant caretaker of the mansion, to find the other members of his quartet and wake them. After they are awakened, they sing the song dedicated to their "Brother Zeke", which causes a mausoleum to rise from the ground and the Graveyard to light up. There are also several wanna-be busts that Zeke must avoid waking while searching for the other three singing ones, as they'll prompt him to start over. However, if Zeke interacts with them after finding the Singing Busts, the wannabes will sing their own song, causing an empty crypt to rise out of the ground.
The busts make a cameo in portrait-form within the video-game Epic Mickey. In the Stretching Room of Lonesome Manor (An alternate world's Haunted Mansion) a portrait shows an elderly Constance Hatchaway sitting atop a tombstone with the Mellomen's names written on it in-place of George's. At the bottom of the tombstone, the five animate busts can be seen.
In Epic Mickey's lore, this world's Constance Hatchaway was known for having killed all of her husbands before disappearing so it is possible that the Singing Busts were the husbands of that Constance.
Kinect Disneyland Adventures
In the video-game Kinect Disneyland Adventures, the Singing Busts can be found outside the Mansion nearbye the queue and the player can use a composer's baton to conduct them as they sing.
- The Busts gain their semi-official names "The Mellomen" through the real life singing group which their actors were a part of.
- In Phantom Manor at Disneyland Paris the busts appear in the Phantom Canyon portion of the attraction, however there are only four Busts instead of five (Cousin Al is the Bust that's missing).
- In a Marc Davis concept rendering of the busts the bust of Aunt Lucretia (the woman staring bust found in Disneyland's Portrait Corridor and DisneyWorld's Library) hinting that she may have originally been included with the rest of the singing busts and that, originally, there were planned to be six Singing Busts instead of five. Why she was removed from the Group and turned into a Staring Bust is unknown.
- The tombstones of Rollo Rumkin and Phineas Pock are 2 of the original 8 tombstones that were found in the original family plot of Disneyland's Haunted Mansion and, while in Disney World's Mansion, the epitaphless graves of Uncle Theodore, Phineas Pock, Cousin Algernorn, Rollo Rumkin and Ned Nub are found on the hillside infront of the Mansion.
- Phineas Pock is a common name used in the Haunted Mansion's history such as the unused concept of Phineas J. Pock who was the proposed name for the Lord and Master of the Disney World Haunted Mansion, the "author" of the book Magic from the the Haunted Mansion in Disneyland and a character featured in a 1969 radio ad for the Haunted Mansion who was voiced by Paul Frees (the original voice of the Ghost Host).
- The busts are referenced in the 1997 animated Disney film Hercules where a group of Greek Muses animate marble-busts while singing and the bust animated by the muse Thalia has her head slanted.
- Originally, Jay Meyer portrayed Rollo Rumkin and Verne Rowe portrayed Ned Nub. These two later had their faces switched, however, and are still switched to this day. So now Jay Meyer is Ned Nub and Verne Rowe is Rollo Rumkin. In Phantom Manor though, it was the other way around on opening day, but now the two still have their original faces in this version. Why this switcheroo happened in any ride is unknown.