Gershwin & Kern album artWe continue looking through the liner notes of the Gershwin & Kern recording as we approach it’s impending release — August 14th! Today, we share author Eric Bromberger’s notes on Gershwin and Kern as contemporaries:

George Gershwin and Jerome Kern were contemporaries, and their careers ran along parallel paths. Both began their careers as “song-pluggers,” both began to write songs for shows, both quickly began to write complete shows, and both eventually went to Hollywood, where they wrote songs for films. Together, Kern and Gershwin transformed American musical theater — Kern by his careful integration of songs into the drama unfolding onstage, Gershwin by his melodic gift and sheer energy (and by his readiness to adapt elements of jazz for his own music). And both died relatively young: Gershwin of a brain tumor at 38, Kern of a cerebral hemorrhage at 60. Nearly a century after their careers took off, they remain two of the most distinctive voices in American music.

Track 6: “The Way You Look Tonight” by Jerome Kern

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