The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song honors living musical artists (composer and/or performer) whose lifetime contributions exemplify the standard of excellence associated with the work of George and Ira Gershwin (see above).
The Gershwin Brothers gave the world: Rhapsody in Blue, Porgy and Bess, An American in Paris, the music for the soundtrack for the film “Manhattan,” and many popular songs (eg, “Nice Work If You Can Get It,” “It Ain’t Necessarily So,” “They Can’t Take That Away From Me,” “Embraceable You,” Someone To Watch Over Me,” “They All Laughed,” etc.)
Once, Ira was challenged to write the lyrics for a love song –but without using the word “love.” What song did he write? (see below: ***)
George died at age 38 (a brain tumor) in 1937. (Ira died in 1983 at age 86.) On that date, July 11, 1937, a writer said: “George Gershwin died on July 11, 1937, but I don’t have to believe it if I don’t want to.”
I have no problem with the recipients of this award. But 9 of the 10 individuals are men. What woman would you want to receive it? For example, how about:
*** = They All Laughed.
They all laughed at Christopher Columbus
When he said the world was round
They all laughed when Edison recorded sound
They all laughed at Wilbur and his brother
When they said that man could fly
They told Marconi
Wireless was a phony
It’s the same old cry
They laughed at me wanting you
Said I was reaching for the moon
But oh, you came through
Now they’ll have to change their tune
They all said we never could be happy
They laughed at us and how!
But ho, ho, ho!
Who’s got the last laugh now?