Since I already wrote about most of the works on this record, I would like to write about the only one that I didn’t cover yet: the second prelude for piano. When I first saw the title I was confused: I never heard of it. Chopin and Debussy are known to have copied Bach’s attempt to cover all keys with short pieces. I never heard of a series like that done by Gershwin. What’s the story here?
Gershwin wrote this when he was 28. They were first performed in the Roosevelt Hotel in New York in 1926. He intended this as part of a series of 24, but then limited it to seven, then six in performance, and finally only three were actually published. And I think it is a pity he didn’t finish the work: it would have been a fine jazzy addition to the prelude tradition. The second prelude was called a blues lullaby by Gershwin.