Song Author: George Gershwin, with lyrics by Ira Gershwin.


But Not for Me (song)

“But Not for Me” is a popular song, composed by George Gershwin, with lyrics by Ira Gershwin.

It was written for their musical Girl Crazy (1930) and introduced in the original production by Ginger Rogers. It is also in the 1992 musical based on Girl Crazy, Crazy for You. Judy Garland sang it in the 1943 film version of Girl Crazy.

Singer Ketty Lester remade “But Not For Me” in a similar arrangement and it reached #10 on the US Adult Contemporary chart, #41 the Billboard Top 40, and #45 in the UK in 1962.

It is also featured in the 1979 Woody Allen movie Manhattan, the 1989 Rob Reiner movie When Harry Met Sally… (performed by Harry Connick, Jr.), the 1994 Mike Newell film Four Weddings and a Funeral, and in the opening scene of the 1998 Bennett Miller documentary The Cruise.

Beginning in 2012, it is being performed by Kelli O’Hara (Billie Bendix) in Act 2, Scene 1 of Joe Pietro’s new Broadway musical, “Nice Work If You Can Get It,” featuring the music of George and Ira Gershwin.

Notable recordings

Billie Holiday
Chet Baker, on the album Chet Baker Sings
Helen Forrest
Joshua Bell, in concert in London, London Symphony Orchestra, John Williams conducting (March 2, 2009 at the Barbican Center, London, England)
Polly Bergen, on The Polly Bergen Show[2]
Carol Burnett, performed on “The Muppet Show
Chris Connor, on the album Masters of Jazz Vol. 5 Female Vocal Classics Rhino Records
Bobby Darin
Miles Davis, on the album Bags’ Groove (1954 – instrumental version)
Sammy Davis Jr.
Doris Day, on the album Day By Day (1956)
Ella Fitzgerald, on the albums Ella Sings Gershwin (1950), Ella Fitzgerald Sings the George and Ira Gershwin Songbook (1959) and Nice Work If You Can Get It (1983).
Judy Garland
Ahmad Jamal, on the album At the Pershing: But Not for Me (1958)
John Coltrane, on the album My Favorite Things (1961)
Georgia Brown, on the album Georgia Brown Sings Gershwin (1963)
Rosemary Clooney, on the album Rosemary Clooney Sings the Lyrics of Ira Gershwin (1979)
Linda Ronstadt, on the album For Sentimental Reasons (1986)
Elvis Costello, on the album The Glory of Gershwin (1994)
Elton John, on the Four Weddings and a Funeral soundtrack (1994)
Natalie Merchant, on the album Red Hot + Rhapsody (1998)
The Idea of North, on the album Here & Now (2003)
Ronnie Milsap, on the album Just for a Thrill (2004)
Chelsea Krombach, on the album Profile, her debut album (2004)
Modern Jazz Quartet
Paul Motian with Joe Lovano
Frank Sinatra
Rod Stewart, on the album Stardust: The Great American Songbook Volume III (2004)
Sarah Vaughan, on The George Gershwin Songbook, Vol. 2
Dinah Washington
Diana Krall on the TV-series Spectacle: Elvis Costello with… in 2009
Lisa Ekdahl, on the album Heaven, Earth And Beyond (2002)
Joni James, on the album, In the Still of the Night (1956)