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Ira Gershwin

ira gershwin

Born: 1986 Died: 1983

Gershwin was born Israel Gershowitz in New York City, the oldest of four children of Morris (Moishe) and Rose Gershovitz (nee Rosa Bruskin), who were Russian Jews, born in St Petersburg, who had emigrated to the US in 1891. Ira's siblings were George, and Frances. Morris changed the family name to "Gershwine" (or alternatively "Gershvin") well before their children rose to fame; it was not spelled "Gershwin" until later. Shy in his youth, Ira spent much of his time at home reading, but from grammar school through college he played a prominent part in several school newspapers and magazines. The childhood home of Ira and George Gershwin was in the center of the Yiddish Theater District, on the second floor at 91 Second Avenue, between East 5th Street and East 6th Street. They frequented the local Yiddish theaters.

While George began composing and "plugging" in Tin Pan Alley from the age of 18, Ira worked as a cashier in his father's Turkish baths. It was not until 1921 that Ira became involved in the music business. Alex Aarons signed Ira to write the songs for his next show, Two Little Girls in Blue, ultimately produced by Abraham Erlanger, along with co-composers Vincent Youmans and Paul Lannin. So as not to appear to trade off George's growing reputation, Ira wrote under the pseudonym "Arthur Francis", after his youngest two siblings. His lyrics were well received, allowing him successfully to enter the show-business world with just one show. Later the same year, the Gershwins collaborated for the first time on a score; this was for A Dangerous Maid, which played in Atlantic City and on tour.

It was not until 1924 that Ira and George teamed up to write the music for what became their first Broadway hit Lady, Be Good. Once the brothers joined forces, their combined talents became one of the most influential forces in the history of American Musical Theatre. "When the Gershwins teamed up to write songs for Lady, Be Good, the American musical found its native idiom." Together, they wrote the music for more than 12 shows and four films. Some of their more famous works include "The Man I Love", "Fascinating Rhythm", "Someone to Watch Over Me", "I Got Rhythm" and "They Can't Take That Away from Me". Their partnership continued until George's sudden death from a brain tumor in 1937. Following his brother's death, Ira waited nearly three years before writing again.

After this temporary retirement, Ira teamed up with accomplished composers such as Jerome Kern (Cover Girl); Kurt Weill (Where Do We Go from Here?; Lady in the Dark); and Harold Arlen (Life Begins at 8:40; A Star Is Born).( Over the next 14 years, Gershwin continued to write the lyrics for many film scores and a few Broadway shows. But the failure of Park Avenue in 1946 (a "smart" show about divorce, co-written with composer Arthur Schwartz) was his farewell to Broadway. As he wrote at the time, "Am reading a couple of stories for possible musicalization (if there is such a word) but I hope I don't like them as I think I deserve a long rest."

In 1947, he took 11 songs George had written but never used, provided them with new lyrics, and incorporated them into the Betty Grable film The Shocking Miss Pilgrim. He later wrote comic lyrics for Billy Wilder's 1964 movie Kiss Me, Stupid, although most critics believe his final major work was for the 1954 Judy Garland film A Star Is Born

American singer, pianist and musical historian Michael Feinstein worked for Gershwin in the lyricist's latter years, helping him with his archive. Several lost musical treasures were unearthed during this period, and Feinstein performed some of the material. Feinstein's book The Gershwins and Me: A Personal History in Twelve Songs about working for Ira, and George and Ira's music was published in 2012

Featured Items (See Related Items.)

Displaying 1-5 of 5 items.


Professional Tracks for Serious Singers : Sing More Songs by George & Ira Gershwin (Volume 2) : Solo : Songbook & CD : George & Ira Gershwin : 888680033569 : 1941566049 : 00138895

Professional Tracks for Serious Singers : Sing More Songs by George & Ira Gershwin (Volume 2)

Review: Eight more Gershwin songs are presented in the second volume of this package, which is designed to provide the at-home singer with an actual professional setting. The CD features orchestral interludes and instrumental solos typical of a live club performance, retaining the natural performance flow of an actual performance with an accompanying rhythm section or orchestra. Includes: Of Thee I Sing - Embraceable You - Oh, Lady Be Good - How Long Has This Been Going On? - Summertime - Love Walked In - Nice Work If You Can Get It - I Got Rhythm.

Songlist: Of Thee I Sing, Embraceable You, Oh, Lady Be Good, How Long Has This Been Going On?, Summertime, Love Walked In, Nice Work If You Can Get It, I Got Rhythm

More details
8358b | Songbook & CD $24.95 | Solo add item to cart


Professional Tracks for Serious Singers : Sing the Songs of George & Ira Gershwin : Solo : Songbook & CD : George & Ira Gershwin : 888680039028 : 1941566006 : 00138891

Professional Tracks for Serious Singers : Sing the Songs of George & Ira Gershwin

Review: Eight Gershwin songs are presented in this package which is designed to provide the at-home singer with an actual professional setting. The CD features orchestral interludes and instrumental solos typical of a live club performance, retaining the natural performance flow of an actual performance with an accompanying rhythm section or orchestra.

Songlist: Somebody Loves Me, The Man I Love, Bidin' My Time, Someone to Watch Over Me, I've Got a Crush on You, But Not for Me, S'Wonderful, Fascinatin' Rhythm

More details
8354b | Songbook & CD $24.95 | Solo add item to cart


Mark Hayes : Seven by Gershwin - Medium High : Solo : Songbook : George & Ira Gershwin : 038081297132  : 00-27455

Mark Hayes : Seven by Gershwin - Medium High

Review: Take seven of George and Ira Gershwin's classic songs, add Mark Hayes' stunning and unpredictable arrangements, and it all adds up to a winning collection for singers and listeners alike. This treasured collection is available in both Medium High and Medium low editions, with an optional Accompaniment CD featuring piano recordings performed by the incomparable Mark Hayes himself.

Songlist: By Strauss, Clap Yo' Hands, I Got Rhythm, Love Is Here To Stay, The Man I Love, Summertime, They Can't Take That Away From Me

Voicing: Medium High
Style: Standards

More details
8553b | Songbook $24.95 | Solo add item to cart


Mark Hayes : Seven by Gershwin - Medium Low : Solo : Songbook : George & Ira Gershwin : 038081297163  : 00-27458

Mark Hayes : Seven by Gershwin - Medium Low

Review: Take seven of George and Ira Gershwin's classic songs, add Mark Hayes' stunning and unpredictable arrangements, and it all adds up to a winning collection for singers and listeners alike. This treasured collection is available in both Medium High and Medium low editions, with an optional Accompaniment CD featuring piano recordings performed by the incomparable Mark Hayes himself.

Songlist: By Strauss, Clap Yo' Hands, I Got Rhythm, Love Is Here To Stay, The Man I Love, Summertime, They Can't Take That Away From Me

Voicing: Medium Low
Style: Standards

More details
8554b | Songbook $24.95 | Solo add item to cart


Glad : A Cappella Gershwin : 00  1 CD : George & Ira Gershwin : cgi 1166

Glad : A Cappella Gershwin

Review: Glad began as a progressive Christian rock band in the early seventies. Rich complex arrangements and lush vocal melodies have been their trademark. Each of their early albums had one a cappella tune included. As an experiment, in 1988, they recorded the A Cappella Project which was received with such enthusiasm that they have been alternating instrumental accompaniment with a cappella albums ever since. Glad singing Gershwin is a total treat. All the standards are here "I've Got Rhythm," "The Girl I Love," "Someone To Watch Over Me" etc. To this reviewer "The Gershwin Medley" is nothing short of fabulous!

Songlist: I Got Rhythm, The Girl I Love, Our Love Is Here To Stay, Embraceable You, The Gershwin Medley, They All Laughed, A Foggy Day (In London Town), Little Jazz Bird, But Not For Me, They Can't Take That Away From Me, Someone To Watch Over Me

More details
4404c | 1 CD $14.98 add item to cart Vocal Jazz CDs

Related Items ( See Featured Items )

Displaying 1-50 of 127 items.

Song NameArrangerComposerArtistItem TitleFormatTrax
'S WonderfulDavid BlackwellGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinDavid Blackwell / Andrew Carter (Edited by)In the Mood - SATBSongbook (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
A Gershwin Portrait!Mac Huff / Ira GershwinA Gershwin Portrait!Sheet Music (SAB)MORE DETAILS 
A Medley of WaltzesGeorge Gershwin / Ira Gershwin / Johann Strauss Jr. / Sieczynski / GannonAll-American Boys ChorusOn Tour 1 CDMORE DETAILS 
But Not For Me Paris RutherfordGeorge & Ira GershwinMt. San Antonio College - SingopationEverything Must Change 1 CDMORE DETAILS 
But Not for MePhillip KernGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinVarious ArrangersClassic BalladsSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
But Not for MeGeorge Gershwin and Ira GershwinAndy Beck and Brian FisherOn Broadway SongbookSongbook & 1 CDMORE DETAILS 
By StraussMark HayesGeorge and Ira GershwinMark HayesSeven by Gershwin - Medium HighSongbookMORE DETAILS 
By StraussMark HayesGeorge and Ira GershwinMark HayesSeven by Gershwin - Medium LowSongbookMORE DETAILS 
Clap Yo' HandsMark HayesGeorge and Ira GershwinMark HayesSeven by Gershwin - Medium HighSongbookMORE DETAILS 
Clap Yo' HandsMark HayesGeorge and Ira GershwinMark HayesSeven by Gershwin - Medium LowSongbookMORE DETAILS 
Clap Yo' HandsGeorge and Ira GershwinColorado Children's ChoraleThere is Sweet Music Here 1 CDMORE DETAILS 
Clap Yo' HandsGeorge and Ira GershwinVarious ComposersSinger's Library of Musical Theatre - Baritone / BassSongbookMORE DETAILS 
Clap Yo' HandsGeorge and Ira GershwinShenandoah Valley Children's ChoirSongs From The Heart 1 CDMORE DETAILS 
Clap Yo' HandsPete KingGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinClap Yo' HandsSheet Music (SSA)MORE DETAILS 
Clap Yo' HandsPete KingGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinClap Yo' HandsSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
Clap Yo' HandsGreg GilpinGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinClap Yo' HandsSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
Clap Yo' HandsGreg GilpinGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinClap Yo' HandsSheet Music (2-Part)MORE DETAILS 
Embraceable YouKirby ShawGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinVarious ArrangersJazz StandardsSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
Embraceable YouKevin MurphyGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinVarious ArrangersStandards 1Sheet Music (SSATB)MORE DETAILS 
Embraceable YouKirby ShawGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinVarious ArrangersWomen's Pop BalladsSheet Music (SSAA)MORE DETAILS 
Embraceable YouJay AlthouseGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinEmbraceable YouSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
Embraceable YouJay AlthouseGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinEmbraceable YouSheet Music (SAB)MORE DETAILS 
Embraceable YouJay AlthouseGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinEmbraceable YouSheet Music (SSAA)MORE DETAILS 
Embraceable YouJay AlthouseGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinEmbraceable YouSheet Music (TTBB)MORE DETAILS 
Embraceable YouTeena ChinnGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinEmbraceable YouSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
Embraceable YouCarl StrommenGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinEmbraceable YouSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
George Gershwin MedleyBill Holcombe / Ira GershwinGeorge Gershwin MedleySheet Music (SSA)MORE DETAILSYes
Gershwin for GirlsTeena Chinn / Ira GershwinGershwin for GirlsSheet Music (SSA)MORE DETAILS 
Gershwin ShowcaseCarl Strommen / Ira GershwinGershwin ShowcaseSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILSYes
Gershwin ShowcaseCarl Strommen / Ira GershwinGershwin ShowcaseSheet Music (3-Part Mixed)MORE DETAILSYes
Gershwin ShowcaseCarl Strommen / Ira GershwinGershwin ShowcaseSheet Music (TTB)MORE DETAILSYes
Gershwin! A Concert PanoramaCarl Strommen / Ira GershwinGershwin! A Concert PanoramaSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
Hangin' Around with YouGeorge Gershwin and Ira GershwinVarious ComposersSinger's Library of Musical Theatre - SopranoSongbookMORE DETAILS 
I Got Plenty o' Nuttin'Douglas E. WagnerGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinI Got Plenty o' Nuttin'Sheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILSYes
I Got Plenty o' Nuttin'Douglas E. WagnerGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinI Got Plenty o' Nuttin'Sheet Music (SAB)MORE DETAILSYes
I Got RhythmChristopher ClaphamGeorge Gershwin /Ira GershwinDavid Blackwell / Andrew Carter (Edited by)In the Mood - SATBSongbook (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
I Got RhythmMark HayesGeorge and Ira GershwinMark HayesSeven by Gershwin - Medium HighSongbookMORE DETAILS 
I Got RhythmMark HayesGeorge and Ira GershwinMark HayesSeven by Gershwin - Medium LowSongbookMORE DETAILS 
I Got RhythmWard SwingleGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinWard SwingleA Cappella Jazz for SSAASheet Music (SSAA)MORE DETAILS 
I Got RhythmJay AlthouseGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinJay AlthouseClassic Jazz A CappellaSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
I Got RhythmGeorge Gershwin and Ira GershwinAndy Beck and Brian FisherOn Broadway SongbookSongbook & 1 CDMORE DETAILS 
I Got RhythmMark HayesGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinI Got RhythmSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILSYes
I Got RhythmMark HayesGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinI Got RhythmSheet Music (SSAB)MORE DETAILSYes
I Got RhythmPete SchmutteGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinI Got RhythmSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILSYes
I Got RhythmClay WarnickGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinI Got RhythmSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
I Got RhythmKirby ShawGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinI Got RhythmSheet Music (SATB)MORE DETAILS 
I Got RhythmKirby ShawGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinI Got RhythmSheet Music (SAB)MORE DETAILS 
I Got RhythmKirby ShawGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinI Got RhythmSheet Music (SSA)MORE DETAILS 
I've Got a Crush on YouGeorge and Ira GershwinVarious ComposersSinger's Library of Musical Theatre - TenorSongbookMORE DETAILS 
It Ain't Necessarily SoMarion LintonGeorge Gershwin / Ira GershwinVarious ArrangersStandards 1Sheet Music (SSAATB)MORE DETAILS 
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