Remembering Robert Sherman â€œThe Boysâ€ and Sherman Brothers TributeÂ
As many of you know a few weeks ago Robert Sherman long time Disney songwriter and legend of popular culture passed away. He was a remarkable human being who wanted to bring happiness to the world and succeeded multiple times and was so influential to not just my childhood, but your childhood and our parentsâ€™ childhoods. As a Disney fan, lover of music and an admirer of beautiful artistry I could not stay silent about this. I will honor Mr. Shermanâ€™s memory by promoting the documentary that was made by his son and nephew about his life as well as the life of his collaborator Richard Sherman. I will also show a selection of some of the brothersâ€™ most popular songs and their most meaningful songs. Welcome to this special installment of MUSICAL MARCH MADNESS the Tribute to Robert Sherman and the Sherman Brothers.
This was a documentary that was released in 2009 as part of a 3 documentary bombardment of excellent documentaries of Disney history the other two being â€œWaking Sleeping Beautyâ€ and â€œWalt and ElGrupoâ€. It was directed by Robert Shermanâ€™s son Jeff and Richardâ€™s son Gregg and produced by oddly enough Ben Stiller. I was surprised to see him as Executive Producer. The film is basically a documentary of the life of Richard and Robert Sherman from their family roots to their current lives and families. The film offers a heartfelt, heartbreaking and sincere look and tribute to these remarkable gentlemen. The interviews consist of obvious people that worked with them such as Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke, and Roy E. Disney as well as from those that you wouldnâ€™t expect or have never really worked with the Sherman Brothers such as Ben Stiller, Stephen Schwartz, Alan Menken, John Williams, and the most interesting of all John Landis! John Landis is absolutely hilarious!!!! I bet Disney has hours of bloopers and cut footage of him talking about hilarious anecdotes and jokes locked in the vault somewhere. Back on a serious note the film is amazing in its pacing and execution of the story and is very illuminating on Robert and Richardâ€™s relationship and how it was often not what most people would find brotherly. These two men and their wives as the film points out were just different people that according to AJ Carothers had they not been related would never have seen each other socially. I find it so amazing that we get both brothersâ€™ perspectives on a situation by cutting from one brotherâ€™s version to the next and being that they donâ€™t see each other outside of special events their interviews are recorded separately. The film gives the necessary whimsy to their success, but keeps the personal story, struggles and contrasts of the brothersâ€™ personalities down to earth. There are a lot of very emotional scenes that get your tear ducts going. The one that gets me teary eyed is the scene where Richard is talking about a picture that Robert framed and gave to him for his 50thÂ Birthday with a note inside. That was very moving. The split screen of Richard and Robertâ€™s lives in some sections were really effective. The film was made with the hopes of not only informing the world about the Sherman Brothersâ€™ story, but also as an opportunity to reconnect, but unfortunately that is not the case and a lot like life doesnâ€™t have a very happy ending. But as Jeff Sherman said â€œI think that somewhere in their songs, they do meet.â€ And I couldnâ€™t agree more. I also think itâ€™s worth noting that even though the Sherman Brothers didnâ€™t reunite it forged a new collaboration between the cousins Jeff and Gregg Sherman and I see that the magic lives on in them whether they get along or not came together to create a wonderful and beautiful film about their fathers and families. The Boys is an absolutely excellent film and should be viewed by anyone that cherishes their childhood.
One of the great things that make the Sherman Brothers such an effective song writing team is surprisingly enough their different personalities. Richard is very outgoing and out there while Robert was more subdued and reserved. The Boys uses various examples and metaphors to describe them such as Paul McCartney and John Lennon, Sentimentalist and Romantic, Supercalifragilistic… and Feed the Birds etc.Â Â Richard being the outgoing one would stretch the song to its artistic limits and Robert would in some way reel the song in and bring the song down to earth which is why thereâ€™s such diversity to their scores with upbeat and fun songs like Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious and slow and deep and meaningful songs like Feed the Birds and Chim Chim Cheree in the same score. Here are songs that are my personal favorites as well as their more iconic works.Â Â ALL MUSIC AND LYRICS ARE BY RICHARD AND ROBERT SHERMAN AND OWNED BY WALT DISNEY RECORDS
I chose this as opposed to Feed the Birds because I think itâ€™s more emotional and powerful because (in the context of the film) its Mr. Banks seeing what Mary Poppins and the children have been trying to tell him and what Bert finally made clear to him. The wool has been lifted from Mr. Banksâ€™s eyes and he understands and the music is so effective and absolutely excellent.
Ah the theme song to the â€œchubby little cubby all stuffed with fluffâ€. What a great song! It is the perfect song to Winnie the Pooh it sets up the characters and world perfectly and was a staple of many of our childhoods.
I just recently started to listen to this song and itâ€™s absolutely great!!! Itâ€™s from the Tigger Movie and is co written and performed by Kenny Loggins and is a very sweet song about the bonds of friendship that Pooh and friends share and how it can apply to everyone.
I already talked about this song in my character themes list so I wonâ€™t say too much, but I will say that this is my favorite Sherman Brothers song. Itâ€™s sincere and optimistic without being over the top like Supercal and offered great insight into Bertâ€™s view on life and his influences on the children as a father figure in the time Mary Poppins is their nanny.
Now this is a very different version of the catchiest song of all time. This version is a music video that was used to promote Hong Kong Disneyland and it features the original ballad version of the song which in my opinion is much better than the original up tempo version we are for better or worse familiar with. It is performed by various Asian popstars with excellent voices from Hong Kong, Philippines, Malaysia, and Thailand. I find it very interesting that this is the first time that I know of where popstars of different countries come together to sing this song. It seems like one of those â€œduhâ€ moments especially now in our world which is drowning in stupidity, despair and cynicism. I donâ€™t why all the big popstars of countries in the United Nations donâ€™t come together to do an amazing music video with this song. Well this version is my favorite version of Small World. It is beautifully arranged, sung and gets to the root of the song of having people of different countries singing this song together. It gets my Asian pride going seeing as Iâ€™m Asian even though my country of origin (Japan) isnâ€™t represented. An excellent version of arguably the Sherman Brothersâ€™ most iconic song!
Even with the passing of Robert Sherman his legacy along with his brotherâ€™s will live on forever. His songs will continue to bring happiness to the world and be a beacon of light in this cold dark world. May the light and significance he brought to your childhood and into your adulthood never die and let us remember the excellent artist that is Robert Sherman. My deepest condolences to the entire Sherman family from Robert and Richardâ€™s sides. Now my fellow fans I would like a moment of silence and reflection to fondly remember a talented, fascinating, and remarkable human being named Robert B. Sherman. I will leave you now with Robert Shermanâ€™s favorite Sherman Brothers song â€œOn the Front Porchâ€ from the Disney film Summer Magic.
Join me next time where I do another list of the Top 13 Most UNDERRATED Disney songs!!!!!!!!!