As Thousands Cheer: The Life of Irving Berlin

As Thousands Cheer The Life of Irving Berlin Irving Berlin was unable to read or write music and could only play the piano in the key of F sharp major yet for the first half of the twentieth century he was America s most successful an

  • Title: As Thousands Cheer: The Life of Irving Berlin
  • Author: Laurence Bergreen
  • ISBN: 9780306806759
  • Page: 252
  • Format: Paperback
  • Irving Berlin 1888 1989 was unable to read or write music and could only play the piano in the key of F sharp major yet, for the first half of the twentieth century he was America s most successful and most representative songwriter, composing such hits as Alexander s Ragtime Band, Cheek to Cheek, Let s Face the Music and Dance, Puttin on the Ritz, White ChrisIrving Berlin 1888 1989 was unable to read or write music and could only play the piano in the key of F sharp major yet, for the first half of the twentieth century he was America s most successful and most representative songwriter, composing such hits as Alexander s Ragtime Band, Cheek to Cheek, Let s Face the Music and Dance, Puttin on the Ritz, White Christmas, Anything You Can Do, There s No Business Like Show Business, and God Bless America As Thousands Cheer, winner of the Ralph J Gleason Music Book Award, explores with precision and sensitivity Berlin s long, prolific career his self doubt and late blooming misanthropy and the tyrannical control he exerted over his legacy of song From his immigrant beginnings through Tin Pan Alley, Broadway, and Hollywood to his reclusive and bitter final years, this definitive biography reveals the man who wrote 1500 songs but could never quash the fear that, for all his success, he wasn t quite good enough.

    One thought on “As Thousands Cheer: The Life of Irving Berlin”

    1. Irving Berlin was really the start of what became known as the Golden Age of Songwriting that probably ended with Stephen Sondheim. The real McCoys who hated approximate or false rhyming, who really matched words perfectly to music, who had something to say, and who left us tunes that Ella and Frank delivered to make the hairs on your neck stand up. Irving Berlin kicked off the line that included the Gershwins, Kern, Rodgers, Hammerstein, Porter , Loesser, Warren, Van Heusen, Cahn, Arlen, Mercer [...]

    2. I was more than halfway through the biography of this American icon before I realized what was wrong with it. It wasn't the writing style, which in fact is terrific. It wasn't the depth of the research or the range of source materials, both of which are admirable. It wasn't even the hard-to-read typeface and horrible-quality photos of the Da Capo trade-paperback edition. What was wrong with As Thousands Cheer was that Laurence Bergreen had written for hundreds and hundreds of pages about Irving [...]

    3. Very detailed account of Irving Berlin's life. It was interesting and contained a lot of information about the theatre and the men and women who were on the stage and behind it. Very intense. There were inportant facts in each sentence. But I like the theatre and I like to read about the people who were artists and stars.

    4. Irving Berlin is my hero. I pick up this book every once-in-a-while. It is written with love and knowledge of Berlin.

    5. "Irving Berlin has no place in American music; he IS American music." That oft quoted statement by Jerome Kern captures how much of the world felt about this remarkable man who made such an incredible contribution to our musical landscape. If you decide to read a Berlin biography, this one is well worth your consideration. As I read, I kept thinking that an alternate title for this book might have been "Irving Berlin and his World." The composer lived for 101 years and so there is a lot of time [...]

    6. Good book, just very long. This is a very detailed account of Berlin's life and not much to question about the accuracy. The story runs along smoothly in chronological order without becoming tedious. There are a few sections that seemed to repeat, but overall a good read.

    7. Having sung a lot of Irving Berlin's songs, I was curious about his life. This book is VERY comprehensive, more comprehensive than I needed but I still enjoyed it. It was obviously very well researched.

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