Samuel "Sam" Most (December 16, 1930 – June 13, 2013) was an American jazz flautist, clarinetist and tenor saxophonist, based in Los Angeles. He was "probably the first great jazz flutist," according to jazz historian Leonard Feather.
He was born in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and began his career in music at the age of 18 with the bands of Tommy Dorsey, Shep Fields, Boyd Raeburn and Don Redman. He also performed many times with his older brother, clarinetist Abe Most.
His first recording was at age 23, a single called "Undercurrent Blues". The next year he was awarded Down Beat magazine's "Critic's New Star Award". Between 1953 and 1958 Most led and recorded sessions for the Prestige, Debut, Vanguard and Bethlehem labels. He also did session work for Chris Connor, Paul Quinichette and Teddy Wilson. He was a member of the Buddy Rich band from 1959 to 1961.
Most resurfaced in the late 1970s recording six albums on the Xanadu label.
One night, after playing at a Las Vegas night club, he was asked by Frank Sinatra to have breakfast with him at the singer's home. After a session, which included Sinatra singing as Most played the piano, Sinatra left the room and came back with a flute case. Most opened it and saw a beautiful, expensively hand carved flute. Sinatra told Most that he had used this flute to practice breath control with and then gave the flute to him as a gift saying, "I know you'd appreciate this Sam - it's yours." Most retained the gift to the end of his life.[undue weight? ]
From 1987 Most, with producer Fernando Gelbard of Liquidjazz.com, recorded four albums, including Solo Flute.
With Louis Bellson
With Clare Fischer
With Stan Kenton
With Paul Quinichette
With Lalo Schifrin