In A Fine Romance, David Lehman looks at the formation of the American songbook—the timeless numbers that became jazz standards, iconic love songs, and sound tracks to famous movies—and explores the extraordinary fact that this songbook was written almost exclusively by Jews.
Read alsoThe Best American Poetry 2009
David Wagoner writes about regular lives with plain grace and transcendent humanity, and the seventy-five poems he has chosen for the 2009 edition of The Best American Poetry grapple with life, celebrate freedom, and teem with imaginative energy. With engaging notes from the poets, Wagoner's superb introductory essay, series editor David…
Lehman’s analytical skills, wit, and exuberance infuse this book with an energy and a tone like no other: at once sharply observant, personally searching, and attuned to the songs that all of us love. He helps us understand how natural it should be that Wizard of Oz composer Harold Arlen was the son of a cantor who incorporated “Over the Rainbow” into his Sabbath liturgy, and why Cole Porter—the rare non-Jew in this pantheon of musicians who wrote these classic songs shaped America even as America was shaping them.
From the Hardcover edition.