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Rex Koury

Rex Koury

Также известно как: Koury

Дискография Rex Koury:

# Название релиза Информация об aльбоме Купить альбом в iTunes Год издания Лейбл
1 Rex Koury At The Forum 18 audio iTunes 1981 HMR Productions
2 Rex Koury At San Sylmar 12 audio iTunes National Custom Recording
3 Rex Koury Plays The Giant Wurlitzer Pipe Organ At Old Town Music Hall 12 audio iTunes National Custom Recording
4 San Sylmar Presents Rex Koury At The Mighty Wurlitzer 17 audio iTunes 1986 Klavier Records
5 Rex Koury Plays The Famous Scotty's Castle Theater Organ 12 audio iTunes
6 Golden Melodies Starring Rex Koury At The Biggest Little Wurlitzer 13 audio iTunes 1979 HMR Productions
7 Rex Koury Meets The Rodgers 260 Special Theatre Organ 11 audio iTunes Concert Recordings
8 But Beautiful 17 audio iTunes 1984 Klavier Records
9 When The Band Plays In The Park / I'm Going Around And Around 2 audio iTunes Castle Records (17)
10 Stairway To Heaven 11 audio iTunes Imperial
11 Rex In Center City 10 audio iTunes 1976 Advent Records

Rex Koury was born in England in 1912 but his parents came to America the following year moving to Cranford, New Jersey. After going to school with studies in piano, beginning at age 8, he sang for two years at Old Trinity Church in NYC. In 1924 he went to the movies to see the production of Abraham Lincoln in the Regent Theater in Elizabeth, NJ and he was so fascinated with the pipe organ that was used to accompany the movie that he forgot to watch the movie and instead watched the organist. He decided he was going to be an organist and convinced his parents to let him take lessons. He persuaded organist Charles Vanderhoven, organist for the newly opened Cranford Theater, to let him play the trailers for no pay and he did that for seven nights a week. He did so well that he was playing the newsreel, comedy, and hour or two each evening, still for free, but his father told him to get a paying gig. He landed a job at the 1200 seat Elmora Theater in Elmora, New Jersey and was paid $30 a week. He took on various playing jobs until the summer of 1929. The former manager of the Mayfair Theater in Hillside, Harry Black, was named manager of the RKO Proctor’s Fourth Street Theater in Troy and offered him job as solo organist. His father opposed it since Rex had received a small sports scholarship to go to Princeton, but after discussion agreed for Rex to try it for a couple of years. He went to Troy for a one year contract with a one year option with the RKO circuit. Koury was giving the billing of "The Youngest Professional Organist in America" and known as "The Boy with Miles of Smiles." He played the 2/10 Wurlitzer (Opus 1464) which Proctor’s received in 1926 for over two years at Proctors and was a hit with the college crowd making them all sing along. Acts like Bob Hope and George Burns remarked to the stage manager “How do you follow this guy.” While he was playing in Troy he watched the Palace Theater in Albany get built and Harry Black was named manager, so in 1931 Rex was installed as the solo organist playing on a 4/29 Wurlitzer (Opus 1538), originally from the New York Hippodrome. He played it for about a year and half. Rex was so good at the organ that he toured the whole RKO circuit. By 1933 the theater organ was losing popularity and organists were being fired left and right. He left the organ business and went to Hollywood and became a pianist and conductor for the major studios, although he did take a job here and there playing organ in some local theaters. In 1934 he put together a big band the Rex Koury Orchestra and played at the Cocanut Grove winning several Golden Cocanut Awards. Rex also played piano for a 15 piece orchestra led by Ted Mack, the person who later originated the Major Bowes and Original Amateur Hour. He continued to take jobs here and there for radio, as solo organist on NBC, the red and blue networks in 1941, until 1942, when he joined the military service. After the war he returned to NBC as their staff organist in 1946, playing on several shows such as Mayor of the Town with Lionel Barrymore, and Point Sublime with Cliff Arquette. He joined ABC when NBC was forced to separate from the Blue Network and he began working for ABC. In 1952 he was appointed musical director for the entire west coast of ABC. It was here that in 1952 he was asked to do the score for Gunsmoke, a show that ran for 20 years. In 1954 he won the Downbeat Magazine Award for best scoring of a TV Series. He stayed with ABC until 1958 and then returned to NBC in 1963 as musical director for the show You Don’t Say! He worked on other shows until 1970. He began recording records in 1971 after feeling bored at the TV gig and this led to many personal appearances after that. He died in Casper, Wyoming in 2006 at age 95.

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