George Jacob Gershwin (September 26, 1898 July 11, 1937) was an American composer of both jazz and classical music remembered mainly for creating Rhapsody in Blue, best known nowadays as the theme song of United Airlines. He's also known for the opera Porgy and Bess, source of such famous songs as "Summertime" and "It Ain't Necessarily So." He composed the music for Pulitzer Prize-winning play Of Thee I Sing.
Tropes present in Gershwin's life and work:
- Artistic License History: In "Who's Got the Last Laugh Now". People didn't laugh at Columbus for saying the world was round; they laughed because he'd grossly underestimated the size.
- Big Applesauce: Although Gershwin intended his jazz concerto "Rhapsody in Blue" to be reflective of America, the song is associated with New York City above all. See Woody Allen's Manhattan or Fantasia 2000.
- Blah Blah Blah: "Blah, Blah, Blah"
- Biopic: Rhapsody in Blue
- Crying Little Kid: The baby in "Summertime" is comforted not to cry.
- Dramatic Timpani: In the opening of the first movement of "Concerto in F".
- Everything Has Rhythm: "I Got Rhythm".
- Family Business: He worked with his brother Ira until he (George) tragically died from a brain tumor. Ira was the lyricist to George's composer.
- A Foggy Day in London Town: He was the Trope Namer because he wrote a song with that title.
- Jazz: His compositions were heavily influenced by jazz and Broadway musicals.
- Limited Lyrics Song: "A Foggy Day In London Town", again.
- Nobody Thinks It Will Work: "They All Laughed" is about a couple who goes through this, and is actually the Trope Namer.
- Political Correctness Gone Mad: Porgy and Bess has been a victim of this. Depending on who one talks to, it's either demeaning to African-Americans or Fair for Its Day. Of course, it's still one of the most important US operas of the 20th century.
- Revival by Commercialization: "Rhapsody in Blue" is best known today for its usage as United Airlines' official song.
- Self-Deprecation: In the beginning of the song "By Strauss": "...and Gershwin keeps pounding on tin."
- Silly Love Songs: "Blah, Blah, Blah"
- Song of Song Titles: "Bidin My Time" lists off several 1920s pop songs.
- Women Prefer Strong Men: "The Man I Love"