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Fascinating Rhythm: The Collaboration of George and Ira Gershwin

Rosenberg, Deena

4 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0525933565 / ISBN 13: 9780525933564
Published by E P Dutton, New York, New York, U.S.A., 1991
Condition: As New Hardcover
From Renaissanceman Books (Albany, NY, U.S.A.)

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Fascinating Rhythm: The Collaboration of ...

Publisher: E P Dutton, New York, New York, U.S.A.

Publication Date: 1991

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:As New

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title


A music historian closely examines how Ira and George Gershwin intertwined music, lyrics, and drama in more than seven hundred songs that have become symbols of Americana

From Kirkus Reviews:

A music historian with a fine interpretive ear for both music and language examines the collaboration of George and Ira Gershwin- -in what is not a biography but rather a nontechnical study of how the Gershwins' music, lyrics, and sense of drama are interrelated. With the help of in-depth interviews with Ira Gershwin, Rosenberg (Music Theater Program/NYU; The Brothers Gershwin, 1989- -not reviewed; coauthor, The Music Makers, 1978) traces the creative development of the major Gershwin songs and shows. After a short discussion of the brothers' upbringing and exceedingly different temperaments (``We never had much in common as kids,'' Ira recalled. ``I was always home reading...[George] would get into street fights and come home with black eyes''), she launches into a wide-ranging discussion of Rhapsody in Blue and ``The Man I Love,'' the breakthrough song in which the Gershwins first discovered their ``ability to make a song intrinsically dramatic.'' Next comes an examination of Lady, Be Good; here, Rosenberg cites one major reason why the brothers---especially at first---were so different from other collaborators: In the early days of musical comedy, stars were chosen and songs composed before the ``book'' (i.e., plotline, dialogue) was written, a separatist approach very much against the symbiotic Gershwin instinct. Other chapters study such shows as Oh, Kay! and Girl Crazy and explain such pivotal details as how George's ``blue'' notes affect the meaning of Ira's words. The chapter on Porgy and Bess is especially interesting. ``Above all,'' writes Rosenberg, ``Porgy and Bess is suffused with two [Gershwin] characteristics....The first is a depiction of deep loneliness....The an appreciation of a diverse national character.'' Though at times too detailed for the general reader, Rosenberg's straightforward prose is a pleasure. Intriguing and insightful, casting new light on the Gershwin genius. (Black-and-white photographs; score samples.) -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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