Ted Jensen

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Ted Jensen
Ted Jensen 2013.jpg
Ted Jensen, 2013
Background information
Born (1954-09-19) September 19, 1954 (age 60)
New Haven, Connecticut
Occupation(s) Mastering Engineer
Associated acts Billy Joel, Green Day, Talking Heads, Norah Jones, Mastodon, Bring Me The Horizon, Pat Metheny, Behemoth
Website http://sterling-sound.com/engineers/ted-jensen/

Ted Jensen (born September 19, 1954, New Haven, Connecticut) is an American mastering engineer.


Ted Jensen was born into a musical family in New Haven, Connecticut on Sept. 19, 1954 to Carl and Margaret (Anning) Jensen, both of whom were musicians and teachers.[1] Carl did not finish high school, however was accepted into Yale University[2] "on merit" and in 1922 received a degree in Music Theory from the Yale School of Music. Margaret went to Oberlin College & Conservatory and Skidmore College and was also a pilot.[3] Carl and Margaret met on a train while going to a music conference and were married a short time later. Ted has one brother, Rick, and two daughters, Kristen and Kim. While attending Hamden High School in Hamden, Connecticut, Jensen played the trumpet in the high school band. By the time he was 16, Jensen was building his own stereo and recording equipment and began recording local bands both in the studio and at live events. During this time, he recorded several performances for the Yale Symphony Orchestra at Woolsey Hall in New Haven and also met Mark Levinson, who was starting an audio equipment company. Jensen joined up with Levinson and aided in the design and manufacture some of the early products of Mark Levinson Audio Systems.[4] Jensen left Levinson to begin his mastering career in New York City with Sterling Sound in 1976.

Ted Jensen

Professional career[edit]

There were three mastering engineers at Sterling Sound when Jensen was hired to work in the tape copy room, George Marino,[5] Lee Hulko[6] and Greg Calbi.[7] Calbi started at Sterling the month before Jensen was hired. One of Jensen's earliest mastering jobs was the first single by the Talking Heads, "Love → Building on Fire" and later that year, Jensen mastered The Eagles' Hotel California. The following year, he mastered Billy Joel's The Stranger, which began a working relationship with Phil Ramone. Jensen was promoted to Chief Mastering Engineer at Sterling in 1984, and since then has overseen several proprietary developments in mastering technology. This included working closely with Graham Boswell of Neve Electronics in the mid-1980s in developing the first all-digital mastering console, the DTC-1,[8] and as one of the consultants to Apple for Mastering for iTunes. Jensen also designed some of the studio monitors at Sterling, including the ones used by Tom Coyne.[9] In 1998, Jensen, Greg Calbi and Tom Coyne, along with Murat Aktar (Absolute Audio co-founder) and UK based Metropolis, purchased Sterling Sound[10] from previous owner, Lee Hulko.[11]


Sterling Sound[13] is located in New York City, occupying the top floor of the Chelsea Market in the Meatpacking District. Jensen's studio is one of the three surround sound studios at Sterling Sound. It was designed by Fran Manzella, FM Design.[14]

Awards and Recognition[edit]

Since 1976, Jensen has mastered 16 Grammy Award winners in the categories of Record of the Year, Album of the Year and Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical. In 2002, Mastering Engineers became eligible to win Grammys.[15]

• 2003 - Jensen received a Grammy Award for Norah Jones, for Come Away with Me, which won Album of the Year for 2002.[16]

Ted Jensen's Grammy for mastering Norah Jones' 2002 Album of the Year, Come Away with Me

Jensen has garnered 20 Mix Foundation TEC award nominations, winning 5 of them.[17]

• 1999 – Outstanding Creative Achievement

• 2005 - Outstanding Creative Achievement for Record Production/Single or Track for Green DayAmerican Idiot,” American Idiot[18]

• 2008 - Outstanding Creative Achievement for Surround Sound Recording for James Taylor - One Man Band[19]

• 2010 - Outstanding Creative Achievement for Record Production/Single or Track for Green Day “21 Guns” 21st Century Breakdown[20]

• 2010 - Outstanding Creative Achievement for Record Production/Album for Green Day 21st Century Breakdown

Selected Works[edit]

The leadout of Hotel California

In total, Ted Jensen has mastered more than 2500 albums for more than 1100 pop and rock artists.[21]

Ted Jensen & Pat Metheny 2014

Catalog remastering includes: The Beatles (The Capitol Albums),[22] Billy Joel, Eagles, Joe Walsh, AC/DC, Bob Marley, James Brown, Cat Stevens

Television and Video Documentaries[edit]

Green Day (minus Tre) with Ted Jensen and Rob Cavallo
  • 2005 A Supernatural Evening with Carlos Santana (TV Special)
  • 2003 Pearl Jam: Live at the Garden (Video documentary)
  • 2002 Nickelback: Live at Home (Video documentary) (surround)
  • 2001 AC/DC: Stiff Upper Lip Live (Video documentary) (surround mixing)
  • 2001 Pearl Jam: Touring Band 2000 (Video documentary)
  • 1999 Madonna: The Video Collection 93:99
  • 1999 SNL: 25 Years of Music (TV Movie) (mastering)


  1. ^ Jensen, Margaret. "Obituary Notice for Margaret Jensen". http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/nhregister/obituary.aspx?pid=165917127. New Haven Register. Retrieved 13 March 2015. 
  2. ^ Catalogue of the officers and graduates of Yale University. 1921. p. 654. 
  3. ^ Jensen, Margaret. "Obituary". http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/nhregister/obituary.aspx?pid=165917127. 
  4. ^ "Interview with Mark Levinson" (PDF). Retrieved 2014-06-25. 
  5. ^ "George Marino". allmusic.com. Retrieved 2014-06-27. 
  6. ^ "Lee Hulko". allmusic.com. Retrieved 2014-06-27. 
  7. ^ "Greg Calbi". allmusic.com. Retrieved 2014-06-27. 
  8. ^ Boswell. "Prism Sound: A brief history". audio-times.com. Retrieved 2014-06-29. 
  9. ^ "Tom Coyne". allmusic.com. Retrieved 2014-06-25. 
  10. ^ "Mix Magazine". Retrieved 2014-06-27. 
  11. ^ Billboard Sept 26, 1998, p. 148, at Google Books
  12. ^ "Billboard December 21, 2002". Google Books. Retrieved 25 April 2015. 
  13. ^ "The World's Top 13 Mastering Studios". http://blog.landr.com/the-worlds-top-13-mastering-studios/#.U9vsN4BdURa. Retrieved 13 March 2015. 
  14. ^ Manzella, Fran. "FM Design". http://www.fmdesign.com/2013/mastering/. Retrieved 13 March 2015. 
  15. ^ Jensen, Ted. Billboard Magazine. http://books.google.com/books?id=jQ0EAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA46&dq=%22Ted+Jensen%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=_0DNU4_mF46KyATf9oHgCw&ved=0CEwQ6AEwCDgK#v=onepage&q=%22Ted%20Jensen%22&f=false. 
  16. ^ "45th Annual Grammy Awards Winners". 
  17. ^ "Tec Awards Past Winners". http://legacy.tecawards.org/tec/past_winners.html. Retrieved 13 March 2015. 
  18. ^ "TEC Awards 2005 winners". Retrieved 2014-06-25. 
  19. ^ "TEC Awards 2008 Winners". 
  20. ^ "2010 TEC Awards Winners". Retrieved 2014-06-25. 
  21. ^ "Ted Jensen". allmusic.com. Retrieved 2014-06-26. 
  22. ^ Beatles, The – Capitol Albums Vol. 1 at Discogs Retrieved 2014-06-27.