Pondering the Passing of Disney Composer Sherman…

Before there was “The Boys” on Amazon Prime (the series), there was “The Boys” as in the brothers Sherman. In this post, TC ponders the passing of Disney composer, Richard Sherman. Read on! – the editor

Another legend of my youth passed away last weekend. This one was tough. It was almost like a page of my childhood had left the building. I am talking about Richard Sherman. The last surviving brother of what Walt Disney referred to as “the Boys.”

If the name does not ring a bell, the music and songs he co-wrote with his brother Robert, will (and still do).


Think Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, The Parent Trap, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, and the vocal stylings of THE Mouseketeer, Annette!

This duo collaborated on many songs of my youth, and before Walt Disney Productions was considered too square for the 1970’s. The music they created has lasted through the years.


To think these guys were responsible for the most known song in Walt Disney World/Disneyland, the earworm of all earworms: It’s A Small World After All. A great, if annoying, song. We will forgive them for that.

Baby Boomers fell in love with their words and music, especially when they were sung by America’s sweetheart, Annette Funicello.

Audiences were introduced to Julie Andrews, while she sang songs they wrote. They bridged the gap from Las Vegas Cool, in the form of Louis Prima, with the colorful adventures of The Jungle Book.

In a way, they may be responsible for Dick Van Dyke’s Cockney accent, along with making the voice of the most melancholy children’s movie, Snoopy Come Home.

See TC’s post from the past:

In this case, the soundtrack of Snoopy Come Home was on heavy rotation in my house, as it was the number one record I checked out for loan at The Madison Public Library. Incredible thought and collaboration with Peanuts author Charles Schulz, this was an animated film that was way ahead of its time, and a tough sell back in 1972. Even with Snoopy!

So Different. Worked Together Well…

The brothers were so different in personality, it is amazing that they were able to work together. In real life, they did not get along, and it showed as they grew older and farther apart. It affected their families. Many can relate to this.

In retrospect, the duo and their story, were subject of an excellent documentary Disney put out several years ago called “The Boys.”

The Boys: The Sherman Brothers’ Story is a 2009 documentary film about the Sherman Brothers (Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman). The film is directed and produced by their sons, Gregory V. Sherman and Jeff Sherman, and released through Walt Disney Pictures. Ben Stiller acted as executive producer for the film.

Last weekend, I revisited this collaboration between Richard and Robert’s sons. A labor of love and a stepping stone to reunite their families, they told their stories, the good and the bad, without getting exploitive.

That’s a Wrap…

In closing, I have listed here what I consider “the essential” Sherman Brothers collection of films to screen, if you would like to have a sample of their legacy.

  • The Parent Trap– 1962 version. The most non-Disney Disney comedy with that 60’s starlet, Hayley Mills, (X 2) and the ever fabulous Maureen O’Hara.
  • Mary Poppins– Walt Disney’s crowning achievement. The stars aligned for this one.
  • Saving Mr. Banks– The Sherman Brothers were portrayed by BJ Novak and Jason Schwartzman, telling the story of Walt Disney wooing author P L Travers to sign over the movie rights for him to make the Iconic Mary Poppins. Tom Hanks played Walt Disney, and Emma Thompson turned in one of her best performances as P L Travers. This is still one of my favorite movies of the last decade.

  • The Jungle Book– “I Wanna be like You”, belted out by Louis Prima, with an assist by Phil Harris. Period.
  • Chitty Chitty Bang Bang- Britain’s favorite children’s movie, produced by none other than Albert Broccoli, the man responsible for the James Bond franchise.
  • Snoopy Come Home- A personal favorite and as an adult, so much more introspective than you would expect. You would think Fred Rogers was a consulting producer.
  • Bedknobs and Broomsticks– Not the best, but an earnest try to relive the Mary Poppins magic after Walt Disney passed away. Angela Lansbury finally getting her starring role. If this was successful, she could have saved the film version of Mame from the gravel voice of Lucille Ball.
  • Winnie the Pooh- Never missed when it was shown on The Wonderful World of Disney, not to mention merchandise exclusively at SEARS, where America Shops. (or shopped).

Needless to say, most of these can be found on Disney+. That being said, Snoopy was available on Paramount+, but has since been dropped off [editor’s note: check Amazon].

Revisited “Chitty” on MAX (formerly known as HBO).

In closing, I hope I didn’t ruin your day with the ear worm.

[But if I did, I understand my editor has inserted a treat below]

Thanks for reading and hanging out with me!–TC

Bonus Clips…

Read more here.


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