Gershwin: Piano Selections

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Released on July 11th, 2013.

Download includes, as a bonus track, piano selection from the Fred Astaire movie, ‘A DAMSEL IN DISTRESS

CD: £9.99 + p+p

 

About the album:

‘GERSHWIN: PIANO SELECTIONS’ is a follow-up to Alan Durman’s previous successful CD, ‘GERSHWIN: BRITISH PIANO SELECTIONS’ which was featured in David Mellor’s ‘New Releases’ Show on Classic FM. He said ‘Alan Durman is a very proficient exponent of Gershwin’ and ‘It’s like sitting in a superior piano bar hearing Alan play’.

 

This time, Alan performs never-before-recorded selections  from  George Gershwin’s New York productions, ranging from little-known shows like ‘La La Lucille’ and ‘Song of the Flame’ to blockbusters like ‘Strike Up The Band’ and ‘Of Thee I Sing’. Alan also includes a selection from the Fred Astaire movie: ‘Shall We Dance’.

GEORGE GERSHWIN

PIANO SELECTIONS – WORLD PREMIERE RECORDING

 

1 La La Lucille (1919)  7.08 (Tee-oodle-Um-Bum-Bo – From Now On – Nobody But You – Love of a Wife – Somehow it Seldom Comes True – The Best of Everything – Tee-Oodle-Um-Bum-Bo)

Music by George Gershwin

Lyrics by Arthur Jackson & B.G. DeSylva

 

2 Sweet Little Devil (1924) (Arr. Russell Bennett) 7.52 (Hey, Hey – Virginia – the Jijibo – There Is Someone Who Believes In You – Pepita – Virginia – Hey, Hey))

Music by George Gershwin    Lyrics by B.G. DeSylva

 

3 George White’s Scandals of 1924 (1924) (Arr. Hilding Anderson) 9.04 (Rose of Madrid – Somebody Loves Me – Tune Into Station J.O.Y. – Mah Jongg – Year After Year – Night Time in Araby – I Need a Garden – Somebody Loves Me)

Music by George Gershwin

Lyrics by B.G. DeSylva and Ballard McDonald

 

4 Song Of The Flame (1926)  10.21 (Song of the Flame – The Signal – Vodka – Wander Away – Great Big Bear – Midnight Bells – Cossack Love Song – Tar-Tar -Vodka)

Music by George Gershwin & Herbert Stothart  Lyrics by Otto Harbach & Oscar Hammerstein II

 

5 Strike Up The Band (1930) (Arr. Hans Spialek) 7.51 (I Mean To Say – Strike Up The Band – Soon – How About a Man – Hangin’ Around With You – Mademoiselle in New Rochelle – Soon)

Music by George Gershwin    Lyrics by Ira Gershwin

 

6 Rosalie (1928) (Arr. Hans Spialek) 7.27 (Hussars March* – Say So! – Ev’ry Body Knows – Why Must We Always Be Dreaming?* – West Point Song* – Follow The Drum – Oh Gee, Oh Joy!)

Music by George Gershwin & Sigmund Romberg*    Lyrics by P.G. Wodehouse & Ira Gershwin

 

7 Girl Crazy (1930) 11.02 (Mexican Hotel scene – Could You Use Me? – Embraceable You – I Got Rhythm – But Not For Me – Mexican Dance Scene –Bidin’ My Time – Sam and Delilah – Boy! What Love Has Done To Me! – Broncho Busters – Embraceable You)

Music by George Gershwin     Lyrics by Ira Gershwin

 

8 Of Thee I Sing (1932) (Arr. Hans Spialek) 8.09 (Wintergreen For President – Love Is Sweeping The Country – Who Cares – The Illegitimate Daughter – Of Thee I Sing – I’m About To Be a Mother – Because, Because – Of Thee I Sing)

Music by George Gershwin     Lyrics by Ira Gershwin

 

9 Shall We Dance (1937) (Arr. George L. Zalva) 7.41 (Shall We Dance – They All Laughed – Slap That Bass – Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off – (I’ve Got) Beginner’s Luck – They Can’t Take That Away From Me – Shall We Dance)

Music by George Gershwin     Lyrics by Ira Gershwin

Bonus track (download only):

10 A Damsel In Distress (1938) (Arr. George L. Zalva) 6.57 (I Can’t Be Bothered Now – Things Are Looking Up – A Foggy Day – Stiff Upper Lip – The Jolly Tar and the Milk Maid – Nice Work If You Can Get It – A Foggy Day))

Music by George Gershwin     Lyrics by Ira Gershwin

Total time = 83.37

ALAN DURMAN – piano

 

GEORGE GERSHWIN (1898-1937) was a genius.

Beginning with popular songs inserted into musical revues, he went on to write scores for musicals, films and full-scale concert works. He had a natural gift for melody, combined with inspired countermelodies and shifting harmonies comparable to those of Chopin, with great enthusiasm for the ‘pep’ and vitality of the  jazz age. When coupled with the outstanding lyric writing talents of his brother Ira, they wrote some of the most enduring popular songs of the twentieth century.

In 1919 George wrote the music for his first ‘book’ show ‘La La Lucille’ and never looked back. He went on to write songs for a series of ‘George White’s “Scandals”’ revues, collaborated on the music for ‘Song Of The Flame’ with Herbert Stothart and ‘Rosalie’ with Sigmund Romberg, followed by three classic musicals: ‘Strike Up the Band’, ‘Girl Crazy’ and ‘Of Thee I Sing’, before moving to Hollywood to write two Fred Astaire movie scores.

In the course of researching for my book, ‘George Gershwin: An American in London’, I discovered a series of piano selections from these shows, written as  souvenirs for audience members, who were also talented pianists, to  play at home. Unfortunately, many of these shows had slender or non-existent plots, and it occurred to me that a piano selection was often the only way to obtain an idea of the music contained in these long forgotten shows. None of these selections has been recorded before.

Alan Durman c 2013

Recording Engineer: Josh Watkins for Cobnash Studio

 


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What people are saying

“Alan Durman is very proficient as a Gershwin exponent”

David Mellor, Classic FM (NEW RELEASES SHOW, 4th May 2013)

“Brilliant idea….beautiful performances that sound so deliciously authentic.’

Michael Feinstein, Singer, pianist and founder of the American Songbook Foundation (6th October 2015)