Born and raised in New York City, Stew Cutler developed a keen interest in the guitar at an early age. Cutler hit the road at age 19, getting his first gig with blues legend Z.Z. Hill. He began working with instrumental pioneers Bobby Previte and Elliot Sharp. He later moved to Woodstock, NY and worked with bassist Harvey Brooks and many others.
Cutler's sideman work includes musical greats such as: Percy Sledge, Eddie Floyd, Wilson Pickett, Fontella Bass, Jimmy Castor, and more. Recently, Cutler was invited to perform the last European tour of Queen Esther Marrow and the Harlem Gospel Singers.
Cutler has also worked with jazz greats David Sanborn, Bill Frisell, Lester Bowie, Charlie Hunter, Wayne Horvitz to name a few as well as artists as diverse as Meatloaf, Jeb Loy Nichols, David Fanshawe, Sweet Georgia Brown, and Jimmy Dale Gilmore among others.
Cutlers first cd titled “Trio Music” was on Fountainbleu records and 2nd release “Insignia” on the Naim label. His following release, “So Many Streams” was on Fountainbleu "Trio Live" highlights Cutler's powerfully driven live performances. His following cd titled "After Hours", brings it all the way back to his late-night jazz and soul roots.
Stew's latest release is titled "Every Sunday Night" has his live band into the studio and the result is an incredible musical journey. Stellar cast including Bobby Harden vocals, Nick Semrad organ, Julian Pollack organ, Chulo Gatewood bass and JT Bowen vocal.
Cutler is working on an early 2021 blues driven recording.
2) What is your musical background and influences?
I'm a self-taught jazz and Blues player. My father was a classical violinist and my son and daughter are both musicians. Their mom is a singer, so there is a family connection with music. I have played plenty of rock, gospel, and county too. I can read - self-taught there too. Not sure if I'll ever be a great sight reader cause there will always be a bit of a disconnect there. That's a whole other conversation.
My influences are Muddy Waters, Bach, Miles, Coltrane. Guitarists I've played along side such as Matt Murphy and James Clark. Other guitarists in New York... almost too many to mention.
3) What is the role of education in music?
For me it was keeping my mouth closed and playing with people who were better than me. It's always a good position to be the worst one in the band.
4) How do you feel about the current ‘state of the music industry’?
It's not great unfortunately. There is a great hip hop group called the Lessons that is all live playing but there needs to be more of that. Still there are people that break thru so there is always hope/opportunity.
5) Why do you play Mooer pedals?
I love my Mooer pedals! The fact that they are so light weight, sturdy, which is really important, not to mention great sounding. I have few different pedal set ups and there are Mooer pedals in ALL of them.