FONDLY INSCRIBED BY GEORGE GERSHWIN TO RENOWNED FOX PRODUCER WINFIELD "WINNIE" SHEEHAN, "WHO MADE MY FIRST VENTURE INTO MUSICAL TALKIES A GREAT PLEASURE"
(GERSHWIN, George) GOLDBERG, Isaac. George Gershwin: A Study in American Music. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1931. Octavo, original blue cloth. $6800.
First edition of this early biography of George Gershwin, inscribed by the composer on the verso of the frontispiece portrait in blue ink to an important Fox Film Corporation producer who helped persuade Gershwin to write scores for movies: "For Winnie Sheehan, who made my first venture into musical talkies a great pleasure. George Gershwin, Sept. 24, 1931."
Goldberg's biography traces the composer's career from his early life through Tin Pan Alley and Broadway, to Europe, and finally to New York. Though only 33 at the time of this book's publication, Gershwin died only six years later from a malignant brain tumor. Recipient Winfield "Winnie" Sheehan was a producer and film company executive responsible for much of Fox Film Corporation's output during the 1920s and 1930s. "On Gershwin’s return from Europe in August 1928, the press announced that he had signed with Winfield Sheehan of Fox Studios for $100,000 to write a Hollywood musical to be directed by Frank Borzage. 'At first skeptical about the possibilities of the talking movies,' stated the New York Evening Post, 'Gershwin then made a careful study of the new medium and finally decided that it constituted a good vehicle for jazz and other forms of modern music'… Two years later, on April 10, 1930, the Gershwins indeed signed with Fox" (Pollack, George Gershwin: His Life and Work, 482-98). Without scarce original dust jacket.
A bit of rubbing to spine. A near-fine inscribed copy.