Pony Poindexter

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Pony Poindexter
Birth nameNorwood Poindexter
Born(1926-02-08)February 8, 1926
New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.
Died(1988-04-14)April 14, 1988
Oakland, California
Years active1940s–1980s
LabelsEpic Records, Prestige, Inner City
Associated actsLambert, Hendricks & Ross

Norwood "Pony" Poindexter (February 8, 1926, New Orleans, Louisiana – April 14, 1988, Oakland, California) was an American jazz saxophonist.

Poindexter began on clarinet and switched to playing alto and tenor sax. In 1940 he studied under Sidney Desvigne, and following World War II attended the newly founded Candell Conservatory of Music in Oakland, California. From 1947 to 1950 he played with Billy Eckstine. In 1950 he played in a quartet with Vernon Alley. From 1951 to 1952, he was with Lionel Hampton and in 1952 he played with Stan Kenton. Neal Hefti wrote the tune "Little Pony", named after Poindexter, for the Count Basie Orchestra.[1] Through the end of the 1950s Poindexter played extensively both as a leader and as a sideman, recording with Charlie Parker, Nat King Cole, T-Bone Walker, and Jimmy Witherspoon. In the early 1960s he began playing the soprano sax as well.[1]

He recorded with Eric Dolphy and Dexter Gordon on a session for Epic Records around 1962. From 1961 to 1964, he accompanied Lambert, Hendricks & Ross. In 1963 he moved to Paris and recorded with Annie Ross. For eight years he lived in Spain and then moved to Mannheim, Germany before returning to the U.S.[1]

In 1980 he took jazz singer Laurie Antonioli on his final tour.[citation needed] During their eight-month sojourn performing in Germany, Austria, Belgium, and Switzerland, Antonioli and Poindexter were a few days away from going to Paris to record with Kenny Drew when Poindexter suffered a stroke. Antonioli returned him to San Francisco. Having lost the ability to play saxophone, he could sing and Antonioli performed with him in 1986, his final performance at Bajone's nightclub in San Francisco. He published an autobiography, Pony Express, in 1985.


With Dexter Gordon

With Jon Hendricks

With Lambert, Hendricks & Ross

  • The Hottest Group in Jazz (Columbia, 1959–62)

With Wes Montgomery


  1. ^ a b c Yanow, Scott. "Pony Poindexter | Biography & History | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 23 January 2017.