Songs and Music Based on Works By Dr. Seuss

Dr Seuss Holds 'The Cat In The Hat'
Gene Lester - Contributor/Archive Photos/Getty Images

Theodore Seuss Geisel was born on March 2, 1904, in Springfield, Massachusetts. Popularly known as Dr. Seuss, he began his career as a cartoonist before becoming a children's book author and illustrator.

Dr. Seuss was not a doctor, nor was he particularly fond of children. He was, however, one of the great children's writers of all time. Several of his books, including The Butter Battle Book, Yertle the Turtle, and The Lorax, were specifically political. Others explored relatively sophisticated themes such as tolerance, redemption, and self-expression.

The first book he published was And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street, followed by The Cat in the Hat and other favorites like Green Eggs and Ham, Fox in Socks, and How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

His books sold millions of copies worldwide and have been translated into different languages. Some of his books were also adapted for television and film. Dr. Seuss won several awards including the highly-regarded Pulitzer Prize. He passed away on September 24, 1991.

The Music of Dr. Seuss

Dr. Seuss was not a musician or a composer, but he was a lyricist. Many of his stories became animated features, and many of those features included songs composed and sung by various artists.

One of the best known of these was How the Grinch Stole Christmas, with music by Albert Hague and the music was composed by Albert Hague. The "breakout song" from that animated special, "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch," was performed by Thurl Ravenscroft.

Dr. Seuss collaborated with composer Eugene Poddany to write The Dr. Seuss Songbook, which included many nonsense songs as well as bedtime songs for children. He also worked with Poddany on the music for the television version of his classic Horton Hears a Who.

Seussical the Musical and Beyond

Seussical the musical comedy, written by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty, debuted on Broadway in 2000. Based on some of Dr. Seuss's best-loved books, it quickly became a staple in schools and community theaters. There are more than 30 songs in Seussical -- even in the "junior" version that is most often produced in school settings.

The Cat in the Hat, Dr. Seuss's most famous book, was made into a musical animation and then into a live-action musical film. Lyrics for the animation were written by Dr. Seuss, while words and music for the film were written by David Newman.

Where to Find Some of Dr. Seuss's Music

Here are several music resources relating to Dr. Seuss: