Ted Nash (saxophonist, born 1922)

Theodore Malcolm "Ted" Nash (October 31, 1922 – May 12, 2011[1]) was a jazz musician who played saxophone, flute, and clarinet. He was a session musician in Hollywood studios.[2] His brother was trombonist Dick Nash and his nephew is saxophonist Ted Nash,[3] who is a member of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra led by Wynton Marsalis.

Ted Nash
Birth nameTheodore Malcolm Nash
Born(1922-10-31)October 31, 1922
Somerville, Massachusetts, U.S.
DiedMay 12, 2011(2011-05-12) (aged 88)
GenresJazz, swing
Years active1940s–1980s
Associated actsLes Brown, Jazz Composers Collective

Early life and career

Nash was born in the Boston suburb of Somerville, Massachusetts. His goal was to become a classical flutist until he began playing saxophone in his early teens. His professional career began when he went on the road with a succession of dance bands. In 1944 he became tenor saxophonist for the Les Brown big band.[4] With Brown he played on the number one hits "Sentimental Journey" and "My Dreams Are Getting Better All the Time", both sung by Doris Day.[3]

Hollywood studios

In the late 1940s, after getting married, Nash settled in the Los Angeles and became part of the thriving Hollywood movie and television recording industry.[4] In 1956 he recorded with Paul Weston's orchestra the hit album Day by Day, with vocals by his former colleague and close friend, Doris Day.[2]

He was the featured soloist on The Music from Peter Gunn soundtrack, performing the alto saxophone solo on the theme and on the second bridge of "Dreamsville".[5] He was known for his mastery of the extreme altissimo register of the saxophone. He wrote Ted Nash's Studies in High Harmonics for Tenor and Alto Saxophone published in 1946.[6]

Through the 1950s and 1960s he worked as a sideman for June Christy, Nat King Cole, Bing Crosby, Billy Eckstine, Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, and Nancy Wilson. During the 1970s he worked with Judy Collins and Quincy Jones. He retired in the 1980s.[3]


As leader

  • The Brothers Nash (Liberty, 1955)
  • Star Eyes, The Artistry of Ted Nash (Columbia, 1956)
  • Peter Gunn (Crown, 1959)

As sideman

With Georgie Auld

With Elmer Bernstein

With Henry Mancini

  • The Music from Peter Gunn (RCA Victor, 1959)
  • More Music from Peter Gunn (RCA Victor, 1959)
  • The Mancini Touch (RCA Victor, 1960)
  • The Blues and the Beat (RCA Victor, 1960)
  • Music from Mr. Lucky (RCA Victor, 1960)
  • Combo! (RCA Victor, 1961)
  • Breakfast at Tiffany's (RCA Victor, 1961)
  • Hatari! (RCA Victor, 1962)
  • Our Man in Hollywood (RCA Victor, 1963)
  • Uniquely Mancini (RCA Victor, 1963)
  • Mancini '67 (RCA Victor, 1967)

With Pete Rugolo

With Lalo Schifrin

  • Che! (Tetragrammaton, 1969)


  1. Nash, Ted. "Ted Nash". tributes.com. Retrieved 20 November 2013.
  2. Star Eyes, The Artistry of Ted Nash (Media notes). Ted Nash. Columbia Records.CS1 maint: others (link)
  3. Henderson, Alex. "Ted Nash". AllMusic. Retrieved 4 November 2018.
  4. The Brothers Nash (Media notes). Liberty Records.
  5. The Music from Peter Gunn (Media notes). RCA.
  6. Foreword to Ted Nash's Studies in High Harmonics, Leeds Music Corporation, 1946
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