American composer; wrote Rhapsody in Blue.
Typewritten Document Signed George Gershwin, three pages, quarto, New York, November 27, 1931. Also signed by IRA GERSHWIN. A contract for a new song to be written by the Gershwins for the motion picture, Girl Crazy.
“We entered into an agreement dated March 9, 1931, with you, John McGowan and Guy Bolton and Freelex Productions, Inc. in which we purchased the motion picture rights to Girl Crazy. You have advised us that you are willing to write a wholly original song to be sung by Bert Wheeler and Dorothy Lee in a motion picture to be produced by us based on Girl Crazy [to be delivered] not later than December 7, 1931 . In consideration of your services we will pay you $2000 dollars .”
Girl Crazy remains, according to George Gershwin’s biographer, Edward Jablonski, “one of their most inspired scores, including as it does the classic ‘I Got Rhythm’ [and] ‘Embraceable You’ . Girl Crazy converted the Alvin box office into a gold mine after the opening on October 14, 1930 . ‘The premiere performance was conducted by George Gershwin, and he got as much applause as any one on the stage.’ [Brooks] Atkinson concluded that Girl Crazy was ‘an agreeable diversion,’ and predicted it would be around for a long time (it was: 272 performances) .” As this contract reveals, “The single Hollywood assignment of the next year, 1932, was one song, ‘You’ve Got What Gets Me,’ for the film version of Girl Crazy, starring the team of (Bert) Wheeler and (Robert) Woolsey. The studio’s song doctors by not very deft surgery eliminated most of the Broadway score (although inexplicably retaining ‘Barbary Coast’ and the Mexican Dance as instrumental pieces). ‘But Not For Me,’ ‘Bidin’ My Time’ and ‘I Got Rhythm’ were all that remained of the original. The song which the Gershwins wrote was taken from “Those Eyes,” also known as “Your Eyes, Your Smile,” which was shelved by a producer five years earlier, but which the Gershwins preserved for later use. When called upon to write this new song for the film version, ” the brothers remembered the bridge (the B section between choruses) [and from it,] developed the main strain of the chorus of ‘You’ve Got What Gets Me.'”
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