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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 26-50 of 90 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor BS-053023 10-in. 5/28/1940 Blue goose Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053427 10-in. 9/5/1940 There shall be no night Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra ; Herb Jeffries Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053428 10-in. 9/5/1940 In a mellotone Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053429 10-in. 9/5/1940 Five o'clock whistle Ivie Anderson ; Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with female vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053430 10-in. 9/5/1940 Warm valley Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053432 10-in. 9/6/1940 Blues for you, Johnny Sidney Bechet ; Herb Jeffries ; New Orleans Feetwarmers Jazz/dance quintet with male vocal solo (take 2: no vocal) instrumentalist, trumpet  
Victor BS-053433 10-in. 9/6/1940 Ain't misbehavin' Sidney Bechet ; New Orleans Feetwarmers Jazz/dance quintet instrumentalist, trumpet  
Victor BS-053434 10-in. 9/6/1940 Save it, pretty mama Sidney Bechet ; New Orleans Feetwarmers Jazz/dance quintet instrumentalist, trumpet  
Victor BS-053435 10-in. 9/6/1940 Stompy Jones Sidney Bechet ; New Orleans Feetwarmers Jazz/dance quintet instrumentalist, trumpet  
Victor BS-053552 10-in. 10/17/1940 The flaming sword Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053579 10-in. 10/28/1940 Across the track blues Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053580 10-in. 10/28/1940 Chlo-e Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053581 10-in. 10/28/1940 I never felt this way before Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra ; Herb Jeffries Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053780 10-in. 12/28/1940 The sidewalks of New York Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053781 10-in. 12/28/1940 Flamingo Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra ; Herb Jeffries Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-053782 10-in. 12/28/1940 The girl in my dreams tries to look like you Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra ; Herb Jeffries Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-054606 10-in. 7/22/1940 Harlem air-shaft Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-054607 10-in. 7/22/1940 At a Dixie roadside diner Ivie Anderson ; Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with female vocal solo instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-054608 10-in. 7/22/1940 All too soon Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-054609 10-in. 7/22/1940 Rumpus in Richmond Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-054624 10-in. 7/24/1940 My greatest mistake Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor BS-054625 10-in. 7/24/1940 Sepia panorama Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor PBS-055283 10-in. 2/15/1941 Take the "A" train Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor PBS-055284 10-in. 2/15/1941 Jumpin' punkins Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
Victor PBS-055285 10-in. 2/15/1941 John Hardy's wife Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, cornet  
(Results 26-50 of 90 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Stewart, Rex," accessed August 11, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103819.

Stewart, Rex. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved August 11, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103819.

"Stewart, Rex." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 11 August 2020.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

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

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