This is NOT pianist Peter Nero. This Nero plays neither neither piano nor fiddle -- in fact that's not even his real name.
Paul Nero is the name adopted by German jazz saxophonist and composer Klaus Doldinger for a series of instrumental pop albums in the 1960s. Some, like Golden Western Hits (1969), were released on Liberty in North America as well as in his native country. Others, including a few in the non-stop dancing mode popularized by James Last, were confined to a European release.
Since 1971 Doldinger has led a jazz group called Passport whose music has been likened to that of Weather Report. He's also well respected as a composer of music for films and is responsible for the scores of Das Boot (1981), The Never-Ending Story (1984) and Palmetto (1998).
The Paul Nero recordings began in 1965 with The Big Beat, credited to Paul Nero's Blue Sounds, and ended in 1970 with Tops for Dancing. Somewhere along the way the "Blue" was dropped from the group's name.
On Golden Western Hits most of the tracks are familiar themes from western films and TV shows, including of course Bonanza. Jay Livingston and Ray Evans wrote the theme for the long-running series and it was orchestrated by David Rose and arranged by Billy May for the soundtrack. But it was guitarist Al Caiola who had the hit recording, in 1961.
The Nero version has a Caiola-style guitar, but it's surrounded by a very inventive string and brass arrangement.
None of Klaus Doldinger's Paul Nero recordings have made it onto CD or have been made available as downloads. But Doldinger doesn't appear to want to hide them. They're listed in the discography on his official website.
To close, here's the rather offbeat rendering of The Good, the Bad and the Ugly off the Golden Western Hits LP.