George Gershwin

Nice Work If You Can Get It, song (from A Damsel in Distress, film)

    Description by Adrian Corleonis

    For the last song to be heard in RKO's 1937 Damsel in Distress, Gershwin lifted nine bars of an unused song, There's No Stopping Me Now, from about 1930. Around this he and his lyricist-brother Ira confected their ultimate standard in the "looking for love" vein, Nice Work if You Can Get It. The verse is notable for its unforced vocal syncopation capturing the gestures of speech with a musing air --

    The man who lives for only making money

    Lives a life that isn't necessarily sunny.

    Likewise the man who works for fame,

    There's no guarantee that time won't erase his name.

    The fact is, the only work that really brings enjoyment

    Is the kind that is for girl and boy meant.

    Fall in love, you won't regret it,

    That's the very best work of all if you can get it....

    before the refrain's yearning anthem gives away the pretense of the detached observer --

    Loving one who loves you,

    And then taking that vow,

    Nice work if you can get it,

    And if you get it,

    Won't you tell me how?

    Appears On

    Year Title Label Catalog #
    2018 ABC Classics
    2017 Masterworks / Sony Classical 88985395202
    2016 ABC Classics
    2015 ABC Classics 4811872
    2014 Sony Classical 88843047122
    2014 Azica Records ACD 71290
    2014 Decca
    2013 ABC Classics 4810629
    2012 ABC Classics ABC 4810032
    2011 Decca 4782687
    2011 Decca
    2010 EMI Music Distribution / Warner Classics 5099960668
    2009 EMI Classics / EMI Music Distribution / Warner Classics 5099969853
    2009 Parade PAR 2033
    2009 Sony Classical Essential Classics / Sony Classics 50529
    2009 Koch Classics 7772
    2009 EMI Classics / Warner Classics 5099926413
    2008 Ondine 1105
    2007 Sony Classical 88697074162
    2006 Sony Music Distribution 77136
    2005 EMI Music Distribution 5850812
    2005 Centaur Records 2740
    2004 Avid AVC 537
    2003 Sony Classical S2K 89913
    2002 Elektra / Rhino 8122782542
    2001 Philips / Polygram 289468686
    1999 Avid MAK 107
    1999 BBC Music BBCW 10052
    1999 Madacy 4810
    1998 Materiali 90102
    1998 Sony Classical 60659
    1998 Avid 640
    1997 Empire 567
    1996 Sony Music Distribution 6839
    1996 Compose Records 9003
    1996 Showtunes 1929
    1995 Avid 520
    1994 Bainbridge 1051
    1994 Boston Skyline 122
    1993 Centaur Records 2178
    1992 Nonesuch 79151
    1991 Philips / PolyGram 434274
    1990 CBS Records 39700
    1990 RCA 5628
    1989 BMG / RCA 9613-2-R
    1989 CBS Records / Columbia 7927
    1987 Angel Records / Warner Classics 0777747454
    Memoir Classics 502
    Sony Classical Essential Classics 60648
    Musidisc 108252
    Amcam 10304
    Koch 7028
    Smithsonian Records 107
    Telarc Distribution 83337
    EMI Classics / EMI Music Distribution 7692182
    Saville 199
    Classic CD 101
    Pavane 7273
    GRP 2005
    Music Club Records 183
    RCA 60795