"Three is a Magic Number" was the first ever Schoolhouse Rock episode. It was produced as part of the "Multiplication Rock" series, and was the first song written. The music and lyrics were written and sung by jazz pianist Bob Dorough, and the animation was done by the McCaffrey & McCall advertising agency art director Tom Yohe.
ABC representative Michael Eisner bought the rights to the SHR series after viewing "Three is a Magic Number," as the demo tape.
In writing the song, Dorough knew he wanted to include the three times tables, but at the same time he wanted to do that as an aside. So he started off with the line "Three is a magic number," and then did a lot of research into what exactly makes three a magic number. What he came up with are the words in the song.
Yohe, hearing the song for the first time, perceived it to be very visual in its lyrics, and the storyboard he composed for it is in the image above.
The lyrics of this song can be accessed here:
To watch the video of this episode, click here: