Songwriting podcast with Richard Sherman of Disney's Sherman Brothers

Sodajerker, a British podcast devoted to songwriting, produced a great one-hour episode with Disney songwriting legend Richard M Sherman, half of the Sherman Brothers team that gave us everything from "It's a Small World" to "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious" (and lots more). Hearing Sherman talk about his work is fascinating.

As one half of The Sherman Brothers, along with his late brother Robert, Richard M. Sherman is responsible for co-writing the most memorable Disney songs of all time. From the Academy Award winning compositions for Mary Poppins such as ‘A Spoonful of Sugar’, ‘Feed the Birds’, ‘Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious’, ‘Jolly Holiday’, ‘I Love to Laugh’ and ‘Let’s Go Fly a Kite’, to other landmark Disney works such as The Parent Trap, ‘It’s a Small World (After All)’, ‘I Wanna Be Like You’ (The Jungle Book), Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The Aristocats, Bedknobs and Broomsticks and Winnie the Pooh, the Sherman Brothers have enchanted people of all ages for half a century. In this hour of conversation, Richard M. Sherman joins Simon and Brian to talk through the writing of many of these classics in his own inimitable style.

Episode 38 – Richard M. Sherman

MP3 link

(Image: "it's a small world" holiday, a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from harshlight's photostream)


    1. According to Mr Sherman, Walt loved the premise of the movie, but simply didn’t have the time to make the film, and reluctantly turned them down. He did, however, think that the Sherman brothers would be a perfect fit to write the music, and let them out of their contract temporarily in order to work on Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

  1. I was walking through Disneyland one day, and “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” was playing over the speakers. I couldn’t believe it at first. That was curiously enjoyable. 

  2. My kids and I had the great honour of having Richard Sherman as a guest of our tour group on the Disney Dream cruise ship last November. 

    His concert was magical, but even more impressive was how he was off stage. During dinner with him, he was totally immersed in our conversation. I’m sure he’d heard every question my 9 and 12 year old kids asked him a thousand times, but he made them feel like it was the first. Hopefully my kids will remember singing “Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow” and “One Little Spark” with him for the rest of their lives.

    A great entertainer, but more importantly, a great man.

    For those who care to see a great documentary about the Shermans, check out “The Boys: The Sherman Brothers Movie”.

  3. The most impressive room I ever walked into was a Sherman brothers’ music room; not only some serious hi-fi equipment, racks and shelves of LPs, and two grand pianos, but there’s nothing like looking at gold records all over the walls, and two Oscars as well. 

  4. Scrolling down BB and speed reading, I read “Sherman of Disney’s” as “Sherman Hemsley” and it hit me:
    Wouldn’t you love to see in It’s A Small World an animatronic Hemsley dancing to krautrock?

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