Composer and pianist George Gershwin has left his trademark on both classical and popular genres of American music. But for most of his theatrical works – which include more than a dozen Broadway shows – he had the help of his older brother Ira. Their partnership will forever be remembered through the great songs they wrote together. Songs that have touched the minds and hearts of Americans for many decades.
Ira Gershwin was the first lyricist to be awarded a Pulitzer Prize for the Broadway show, Of Thee I Sing. His partnership with George also produced several timeless tunes and shows like Lady, Be Good! (1924), and Girl Crazy (1930). They even co-authored an opera – Porgy and Bess – to which almost anybody can hum the tunes from “Summertime” or “It Ain’t Necessarily So.”
If you haven’t done so yet, you should probably hurry and give a listen to some of the dynamic duo’s songs performed by the greats of the golden age of Jazz like Ella Fitzgerald’s “A Foggy Day,” or Billie Holiday’s husky interpretation of “Summertime.”
You’ve surely also heard Harry Connick Jr.’s “Love Is Here to Stay” from the soundtrack of the classic When Harry Met Sally, or Frank Sinatra renditions of the brothers’ songs. Either way, pour yourself a glass of red wine, light the fireplace (even if you have to turn the AC on, since we are in Houston after all), and enjoy the great music these two talented brothers have left us. You won’t be sorry you did.