Chapter

Gershwin and Popular Music and Jazz after 1920

Howard Pollack

in George Gershwin

Published by University of California Press

Published in print January 2007 | ISBN: 9780520248649
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520933149 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520248649.003.0009
Gershwin and Popular Music and Jazz after 1920

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Popular composers and lyricists flocked to George and his brother, Ira, in part because of the sympathetic interest they showed toward colleagues. George further assisted his songwriting friends by introducing them to lyricists, publishers, and producers, and by sometimes finding work for them as arrangers or rehearsal pianists. His influence on popular music spread beyond national boundaries, most immediately to England. Gershwin found his own heir in Harold Arlen, who became not only a good friend but, along with Vernon Duke, probably as much of a protege as he ever had. At the heart of nearly all of Gershwin's writings about jazz lay the hope and conviction that such music could form the basis of an enduring art music. Meanwhile, Gershwin retained the highest regard for the two heroes of his youth, Jerome Kern and Irving Berlin.

Keywords: popular music; Broadway; Ira Gershwin; rehearsal pianists; England; Harold Arlen; Jerome Kern; Irving Berlin; Vernon Duke; art music

Chapter.  7627 words. 

Subjects: American Music

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