‘Supercalifragilistic’ composer Robert B Sherman dies

Robert B Sherman, one half of the Sherman Brothers team that wrote over 200 classic Disney songs including 'Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious' and 'I Wanna Be Like You' has died in London at the age of 86.

His death was announced by his son Jeffrey Sherman via a message on Facebook, and confirmed by his agent Stella Richards, the Daily Mail reports.

"He went peacefully after months of truly valiantly fending off death. He loved life and his dear heart finally slowed to a stop when he could fight no more," said his son's message.

He added: "Please say a prayer for him. As he said, he wanted to bring happiness to the world and, unquestionably, he succeeded. His love and his prayers, his philosophy and his poetry will live on forever. Forever his songs and his genius will bring hope, joy and love to this small, small world."

The Telegraph newspaper says that Sherman was born in New York on 19 December 1925.

The same article says that the Sherman Brothers were challenged to write songs by their father, himself a composer, who said: "Look at you two college graduates. I'll bet you can't write a song that kids would be willing to spend their lunch money on."

Robert B and Richard M Sherman went on to write what the Washington Post describes as some of "the most beloved pieces of movie music from the past century", winning two Oscars and a Grammy.  In 1976 they were honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Their work includes scores for the films Mary Poppins, The Sword In The Stone, The Jungle Book, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The Aristocrats, Bedknobs and Broomsticks, Charlotte's Web, The Slipper And The Rose, Winnie The Pooh And A Day For Eeyore and Little Nemo. The brothers also co-wrote the music for Disney Parks.

In Los Angeles, Disney's president and chief executive Bob Iger paid tribute to Sherman, mourning "the loss of an extraordinary talent," AFP says.

"(He was) one of the world's greatest songwriters and a true Disney legend, his legacy will endure forever through the magic of his music," Iger is quoted as saying.

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