Jay Gorney, composer of "Brother, Can You Spare A Dime?" - the unofficial anthem of the Great Depression - has died. He was 93.
The composer, born Daniel Jason Gorney, died June 14 of Parkinson's disease at the Jewish Home and Hospital for the Aged in Manhattan, a spokesman said.A native of Bialystok, Russia, Gorney emigrated to the United States, settling as a child in Detroit with his family.
He attended the University of Michigan, obtaining a law degree, but he gave up the law after one year of practice to concentrate on songwriting.
His career flourished in the 1920s and 1930s when he composed for such Broadway shows as "Merry-Go-Round," "Earl Carroll's Sketch Book," "Touch and Go" and "Meet the People."
Gorney's best known song was "Brother, Can You Spare A Dime?" with lyrics by E.Y. Harburg, for the 1932 show, "Americana." The song became the musical symbol of the Great Depression in the United States.
Other Gorney songs included: "You're My Thrill," "Kinda Cute," "Baby, Take A Bow," "You're At the Top of My List" and "Hogan's Alley."
The composer collaborated with such lyricists as Henry Myers, Edward Eliscu, Lew Brown, Sidney Clare, Howard Dietz, Walter and Jean Kerr, and Harburg.
Gorney also wrote screenplays and produced, directed and wrote for television, according to publicist Norman Winter.
Gorney received the ASCAP/Richard Rodgers Award, the Songwriters Hall of Fame Outstanding Song Award, the Yale Drama School Citation and the American Theater Wing Tony Award for Teaching.