In the 1961 Disney film The Parent Trap, twin sisters Susan Evers and Sharon McKendrick, who were separated as babies, meet at summer camp and plot to reunite their divorced parents. At one point in the film, the girls put on a show for them and sing "Let's Get Together." Susan, the adventurous tomboy, strums her acoustic guitar in opposition to Sharon's prim piano-playing. Instead of fighting, they decide to "get together" and combine their musical differences - a not-so-subtle hint for their mom and dad to also reconcile.
The twins are played by English actress Hayley Mills, an already established Disney star for her Oscar-winning role in Pollyanna the previous year.
This was written by the Sherman Brothers, who went on to create the soundtrack to Mary Poppins a few years later. When they arrived at Walt Disney's office, they thought they were supposed to provide a number for Annette Funicello for an entirely different movie called The Horsemasters. When Disney started telling them the plot of The Parent Trap, the songwriters were thoroughly confused.
"Boy, was he ticked," Bob Sherman recalled to Performing Songwriter in 2014. "He said, 'Okay let's hear what you've got.' He was describing The Parent Trap, which we knew nothing about. All we knew was that he was one living legend that we'd met for the first time who was ticked as hell because we came in with the wrong song." Thankfully, Disney liked what they had - a tune about horsemanship called "Strummin' Song" - and sent them home with the script for the movie.
The Sherman Brothers returned to Walt Disney with "For Now, For Always" a ballad that went to Maureen O'Hara, who played the twins' mother. Dick Sherman recalled: "We brought it in to him and he said, 'Yeah, that'll work, but that's not the name of the picture. We can use that in a certain sequence, but we need a song where the kids are hinting to the parents…'" That's when the brothers put their heads together and came up with "Let's Get Together." It didn't share the name of the film - which was then titled We Belong Together - but it did the job. They wrote another tune called "The Parent Trap" for the title sequence.
Annette Funicello and Tommy Sands, who performed the title theme, also sang a version of "Let's Get Together" for the soundtrack. A solo version by Annette can also be heard during the dance scene at the camp. But ultimately it was Hayley Mills' rendition that was released as a single (credited to Hayley Mills & Hayley Mills in reference to her dual role). It's featured on her 1961 album, Let's Get Together With Hayley Mills.
Peaking at #8 in the US and #17 in her native UK, this was one of two hits from the young actress. Her second was "Johnny Jingo," which peaked at #21 US in 1962.
Mills said rehearsing the scene for the film was difficult because she couldn't really play the piano or the guitar.
The Sherman Brothers say they beat the Beatles to the punch with the "yeah yeah yeah" lyric. Dick Sherman said: "By the way, the 'yeah, yeah, yeah' was before The Beatles did 'she loves you, yeah, yeah, yeah.'" The Beatles released the #1 hit "She Loves You
" in 1963.
The girl group Nobody's Angel recorded this for the 1998 remake, starring Lindsay Lohan as the twins. In one scene, Lohan also sings the tune to herself as she gets onto an elevator.
The Go-Go's covered this for the 2007 compilation DisneyMania 5.