George Gershwin (September 26, 1898 – July 11, 1937) was an American composer. He was born Jacob Gershowitz in Brooklyn, New York to Russian Jewish immigrant parents, the second of four children. George wrote most of his vocal and theatrical works together with his elder brother lyricist Ira Gershwin. Gershwin composed both for Broadway and for the classical concert hall. He also wrote popular songs with success.
Many of his compositions have been used on television and in numerous films, and many are recognized jazz standards; the jazz singer Ella Fitzgerald recorded many of the Gershwins' songs on her 1959 Gershwin Songbook (arranged by Nelson Riddle), and the very greatest singers and musicians have recorded Gershwin songs, most notably John Coltrane, Frank Sinatra, Billie Holiday, Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Judy Garland, Nina Simone, John Fahey, and countless others.
In 1910, the Gershowitzes had acquired a piano for Ira's music lessons, but younger brother George took over, successfully playing by ear. He tried out various piano teachers for two years, then was introduced by Jack Miller, the pianist in the Beethoven Symphony Orc...