This site explores the various 8-bit melodies from Mario in an interactive MIDI format. You need to hear the connection between the 1UP sound and the flagpole/victory music (be sure to play the slow version of the 1UP). My childhood is a lie.
It’s hard to believe that of the hundreds of Mario titles that have come out since the 1980s, Mario himself is almost always the only playable character. Luigi has had his moments and in offshoot titles like Mario Tennis or Golf or whatever-the-shit, you can play as Peach or Toad or Wario or Bowser, but as far as the main line of platformers themselves, it’s always Mario and sometimes Luigi. Finally in the upcoming Super Mario 3D World for Wii U, players will be able to play as Princess Peach for the first time since Super Mario Bros in 1988.