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Rex Stewart

Rex William Stewart (February 22, 1907 – September 7, 1967) was an American jazz cornetist best remembered for his work with the Duke Ellington orchestra.

After stints with Elmer Snowden, Fletcher Henderson, Horace Henderson, McKinney's Cotton Pickers, and Luis Russell, Stewart joined the Ellington band in 1934, replacing Freddie Jenkins. Duke Ellington arranged many of his pieces to showcase Stewart's half-valve effects, muted sound, and forceful style.

Stewart co-wrote "Boy Meets Horn" and "Morning Glory" while with Ellington, and frequently supervised outside recording sessions by members of the Ellington band. After eleven years Stewart left to lead his own groups - " little swing bands, that were a perfect setting for his solo playing." He also toured Europe and Australia with Jazz at the Philharmonic from 1947 to 1951. He made a cameo appearance in Jacques Becker's 1949 film Rendezvous in July. From the early 1950s on he worked in radio and television and published highly regarded jazz criticism. The book Jazz Masters of the Thirties is a selection of his criticism. Stewart also wrote for Playboy, Down Beat and several other publications during his life. He lived in upstate New York after purchasing a 100+ year old farmhouse. He hosted a jazz radio program in Troy, New York and owned a small restaurant for a very short time near a drag racing stadium in Vermont. While living in France, he attended the Cordon Bleu school of cooking and dedicated his life to being a fine cook.

Stewart moved to Los Angeles, California to be near his three children – Rex Jr., Helena and Regina. His other son Paul Albert Hardy lived in New York City. While in Los Angeles he re-connected to many of the Ellington side-men who lived there and played a lot of "jam" sessions in clubs in the Los Angeles area. Rex was also one of the regular studio musicians seen on the Steve Allen TV show. He hosted and coproduced (with George Cole) two radio shows about jazz music from his era, Dixieland Doings and Things Aint What They Used To Be.

Birth and Death Data: Born February 22nd, 1907 (Philadelphia), Died Los Angeles

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1925 - 1958

Roles Represented in DAHR: cornet, leader, composer, trumpet, trombone

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 90 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor BVE-35762 10-in. 7/13/1926 Lazy drag Thomas Morris ; Morris' Hot Babies Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BVE-35763 10-in. 7/13/1926 Jackass blues Thomas Morris ; Morris' Hot Babies Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BVE-35764 10-in. 7/13/1926 Charleston stampede Thomas Morris ; Morris' Hot Babies Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BVE-63195 10-in. 11/5/1930 I want your love McKinney's Cotton Pickers ; Dave Wilborn Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BVE-63196 10-in. 11/5/1930 Hello McKinney's Cotton Pickers ; Dave Wilborn Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BVE-64605 10-in. 11/3/1930 Talk to me McKinney's Cotton Pickers ; Don Redman Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BVE-64606 10-in. 11/3/1930 Rocky road McKinney's Cotton Pickers ; Don Redman Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BVE-64607 10-in. 11/4/1930 Laughing at life McKinney's Cotton Pickers Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BVE-64608 10-in. 11/4/1930 Never swat a fly McKinney's Cotton Pickers Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BVE-64609 10-in. 11/5/1930 After all, you're all I'm after George Bias ; McKinney's Cotton Pickers Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BVE-64610 10-in. 11/5/1930 I miss a little miss George Bias ; McKinney's Cotton Pickers Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-037632 10-in. 6/13/1939 12th Street rag Lionel Hampton Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, trombone  
Victor BS-044887 10-in. 3/6/1940 You, you darlin' Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra ; Herb Jeffries Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-044888 10-in. 3/6/1940 Jack the Bear Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-044889 10-in. 3/6/1940 Ko-ko Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-044890 10-in. 3/7/1940 Morning glory Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-044891 10-in. 3/7/1940 So far, so good Ivie Anderson ; Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with female vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-049015 10-in. 3/15/1940 Conga brava Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-049016 10-in. 3/15/1940 Concerto for Cootie Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-049017 10-in. 3/15/1940 Me and you Ivie Anderson ; Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with female vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor PBS-049655 10-in. 5/4/1940 Cotton tail Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor PBS-049656 10-in. 5/4/1940 Don't get around much anymore Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053020 10-in. 5/28/1940 Dusk Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053021 10-in. 5/28/1940 Bojangles Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053022 10-in. 5/28/1940 A portrait of Bert Williams Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
(Results 1-25 of 90 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Stewart, Rex," accessed October 25, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103819.

Stewart, Rex. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved October 25, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103819.

"Stewart, Rex." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 25 October 2020.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103819

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