MURRAY HILL, NJ, UNITED STATES, June 14, 2023/ — A book for those who love The Golden Age of American Film, which starred James Cagney, Bette Davis, Barbara Stanwyck and Humphrey Bogart!

Gary May’s The Tunesmith takes you from Tin Pan Alley early in the 20th century to Hollywood when Warner Brothers first brought sound to the movies in 1929. After spending fourteen years writing hits on Tin Pan Alley, M.K.”Moe” Jerome was hired by Warner Brothers to write songs for their movies. His grandson, famed historian Gary May, tells his story filled with anecdotes about your favorite films from Yankee Doodle Dandy to Casablanca.

Required to write popular songs at a moment’s notice, Jerome’s life shows us what it was like to labor in the boiler room of one of the great studios, stoking the engines which allowed the production of hundreds of films every year from the 1930s through World War 2, the Cold War and the 1950s. This account of one man’s life sheds light on this important, but overlooked, chapter in Hollywood history. It is available for purchase at

Moe’s life also illustrates the dark side of the Golden Age of American film. Warner Brothers was as much a factory as Ford and Armour, and treated their employees just as harshly. In 1937, during a single year, Jerome wrote songs or music for 32 films from comedies and dramas to westerns and romances. The stress produced by such daily activity led to frequent illnesses that often took him to the hospital.

About the Author
Gary May was born and reared in a family of composers and writers. His grandfather, M.K. Jerome was a songwriter at Warner Brothers and a two time Academy Award nominee for ‘’Some Sunday Morning’’(San Antonio) and ‘’Sweet Dreams Sweetheart’’ (Hollywood Canteen). His uncle, Stuart Jerome, was a veteran television writer from the 1950s until his death in 1983. He wrote for ‘’Alfred Hitchcock Presents’’ and ‘’The Fugitive.’’ Therefore, it seemed inevitable that he would become a writer. Among May’s earlier works are the Allan Nevins Prize winning China Scapegoat: The Diplomatic Ordeal of John Carter Vincent (New Republic Books); Un-American Activities: The Trials of William Remington (Oxford University Press), selected by Alan Dershowitz for inclusion in his ‘’Notable Trials’’ series.The Informant: The FBI, the Klu Klux Klan, and the Murder of Viola Liuzzo (Yale University Press), optioned for a television mini-series in 2023; John Tyler, The American Presidency series (Times Books); Bending Toward Justice: The Voting Rights Act and the Transformation of American Democracy (Basic Books), paperback edition, Duke University Press. (Reviewed by The New Yorker,The Washington Press,The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Nation, Reviews in American History,Publishers Weekly, Booklist, Library Journal, African American Review, Bill Moyers and Company.)

The Tunesmith:The Musical Journey of M.K.Jerome (BearManorMedia) Gary May, Newark, Delaware 19711; 302-598-9696; [email protected];

Ben Ohmart
BearManor Media
+1 7607099696
email us here
Visit us on social media:

Originally published at