Ricky Ford

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Ford and Mercer Ellington (right) in 1975

Ricky Ford (born March 4, 1954)[1] is an American jazz tenor saxophonist.


Ford was born in Boston, Massachusetts, United States,)[1] and studied at the New England Conservatory.[2] In 1974, he recorded with Gunther Schuller and then played in the Duke Ellington Orchestra under Mercer Ellington from 1974 to 1976.[1] After this he played with Charles Mingus (1976–77), Dannie Richmond (1978–81), Lionel Hampton (1980–82), and then in the Mingus Dynasty (1982).[1] He also played with Abdullah Ibrahim (1983–90)[1] and Mal Waldron (1989–94), and has recorded with many other notable musicians including Yusef Lateef, Sonny Stitt, McCoy Tyner, Freddie Hubbard, Amina Claudine Myers, Sathima Bea Benjamin, Steve Lacy, and others.[3]

Ford has recorded extensively as a leader for Muse and Candid.[1]

He settled in Paris, France, in the 1990s.[3] He taught at Istanbul Bilgi University from 2001 to 2006.

In 2009 he founded the Toucy Jazz Festival[4] in Yonne, (France), and invited musicians including Rhoda Scott (2009) and Ravi Coltrane (2011).


As leader[edit]

New World Records
Muse Records
Candid Records
Other labels

As sideman[edit]

With Ran Blake

With Jaki Byard

With Abdullah Ibrahim

With Steve Lacy

With Ronnie Mathews

With Dannie Richmond

With Red Rodney

With Mal Waldron

With Jack Walrath


  1. ^ a b c d e f Colin Larkin, ed. (1992). The Guinness Who's Who of Jazz (First ed.). Guinness Publishing. p. 149. ISBN 0-85112-580-8.
  2. ^ Ricky Ford, AllMusic
  3. ^ a b Mathieu Perez, "Ricky Ford: Five or Six Shades of Jazz" (interview), Jazz Hot #668, Summer 2014.
  4. ^ Toucy Jazz Festival, Toucyjazzfestival.com.
  5. ^ a b "Ze big band". Archived from the original on 2013-07-19. Retrieved 2013-02-08.

External links[edit]