Stu Davis

Stu Davis (b Stewart, David). Singer-songwriter, guitarist, b Boggy Creek, near Regina, of Scottish parents, 1 Jul 1921, d Edmonton 25 Mar 2007.

Davis, Stu

Stu Davis (b Stewart, David). Singer-songwriter, guitarist, b Boggy Creek, near Regina, of Scottish parents, 1 Jul 1921, d Edmonton 25 Mar 2007. In his youth a collector of cowboy songs and ballads, Stu Davis began his radio career at 18, when he and his brother Fred sang as the Harmony Boys on CKCK, Regina. He took the name Stu Davis and in time became known as 'Canada's Cowboy Troubador.' After service in the RCAF he sang in Regina then moved in 1945 to Calgary, where he performed on CFCN radio, at the Calgary Stampede, and at the Buckhorn Guest Ranch. His recordings in 1946 for the US Sonara label, made on the recommendation of Wilf Carter, included the Davis composition 'What A Fool I Was' (a major hit in 1948 as re-recorded by Eddy Arnold). Davis also recorded for RCA Victor in New York in 1948, and appeared on US radio's 'National Barn Dance' (Chicago) and 'Grand Ole Opry' (Nashville).

He sang on CBC radio from Edmonton, then starred on CBC TV shows from Winnipeg (eg, 'Swing Your Partner' 1957-8, the children's show 'Rope Around the Sun' 1958-9, and 'Red River Jamboree' 1960-1) and Edmonton (including some under his own name in the early 1960s and the 13-part CBC TV documentary history of western Canada, 'Trail-Riding Troubadour,' in 1968).

Some of Stu Davis' songs appear in folios published by Gordon V. Thompson (1946, 1956), Empire Music (1949), and Canadian Music Sales (1952). Wilf Carter, Ray Price, and Hank Snow have recorded his songs, and Davis himself made 78s for Apex and Aragon in the early 1950s and some 15 LPs for London 1955-67 (among them two volumes of Stu Davis Salutes the Western Stars, London EB-6, London EB-33). Albums followed for Quality (as Johnny Canuck) and Dominion before Davis turned in the 1970s from music to ranching and real estate. In 1993, Davis was inducted into the Canadian Country Music Association's Hall of Fame.


Further Reading

  • Wills, Brian. '... meanwhile, back at the Lazy SD... ' Canadian Composer, 42, Sep 1969

    Foster, Don. 'The Stu Davis story... pioneer of Canadian country radio & TV,' Country Music News, vol 10, Jan 1990