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Ira GershwinThe Art of the Lyricist$
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Philip Furia

Print publication date: 1997

Print ISBN-13: 9780195115703

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195115703.001.0001

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Here To Stay: 1936–1938

Here To Stay: 1936–1938

Chapter:
(p.134) 8 Here To Stay: 1936–1938
Source:
Ira Gershwin
Author(s):

Philip Fuma

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195115703.003.0008

The prospect of doing an Astaire–Rogers picture is what that ultimately lured the Gershwin brothers to Hollywood. One of their closest friends in California, the pianist Oscar Levant, observed that for George, there was “a considerable problem of adjustment, after the freedom of Porgy, to the more precise definitions of the popular song.” Nonetheless, according to Alec Wilder, “the writing of his more ambitious compositions did not cause his songs to become too complex for popular appeal. George's music moved even closer to Ira's lyrics, and the songs that emerged from that coalescence of music and words were perfect for the casual elegance that had become Fred Astaire's stylistic trademark. But before their new style emerged to produce the great standards they would write, the Gershwins wrote several songs that mark the transition from their recent work on Broadway.

Keywords:   Ira Gershwin, George Gershwin, songwriting, films, Hollywood

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