Written by: Alex Green
Matthew Stewart of the beloved ska/punk outfit Streetlight Manifesto has died.
The trumpet-playing Stewart was 41.
On Instagram, Streetlight Manifesto revealed that Stewart died of natural causes, surrounded by his family and friends.
They also wrote: “Some of you know Matt strictly from our records or live shows, as a trumpet player whose talent was undeniable; raw, powerful and alive. His playing cut through when it needed to cut through, sang when it was necessary to sing and sat perfectly in the mix when that was what was asked of it. Today you lost a musical powerhouse. Others of you know Matt a little better, as many of you have interacted with him directly, be it online or after … a show. He was always roaming around, outside of clubs, backstage…Whether it was a fan, excited to meet him, a local crew member shooting the shit with a friendly musician or a random homeless dude, sharing a smoke. He was never rude to anyone he met and was quick to make new acquaintances…Today you lost a friendly, wandering spirit, as likely to talk your ear off about jazz as he was to put your name on the guest list.”
Stewart self-described himself on his Facebook page as being, “lethal with the brass” and he couldn’t have been more on point. Stewart’s phrasing was original and innovative and he was a player of tremendous power and finesse.
Stewart joined the New Jersey band in 2007, taking over for Delano Bonner. Stewart played on the band’s sophomore album Somewhere In The Between as well as 99 Songs Of Revolution: Volume 1 and The Hands That Thieve.
Stewart will also appear on the band’s untitled forthcoming new album.