Matthew Nelson

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Matthew Nelson
Matthew Nelson.jpg
Nelson on the Ricky Nelson show in 2009
Background information
Birth nameMatthew Gray Nelson
Born (1967-09-20) September 20, 1967 (age 51)
Santa Monica, California, United States
InstrumentsVocals, bass guitar
Years active1989–present

Matthew Gray Nelson (born September 20, 1967) is an American singer, songwriter, musician and recording artist. Along with his twin brother Gunnar, he has been a member of Nelson since 1990. Their single, "(Can't Live Without Your) Love and Affection" reached No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart in September 1990.[1]


Matthew Nelson is a son of the American teen idol Ricky Nelson and actress Kristin Harmon. He is the identical twin brother of songwriter/musician Gunnar Nelson and brother of Tracy Nelson and musician Sam Nelson.[2] His paternal grandparents are Ozzie Nelson[2] and Harriet Hilliard from the long-running television program, The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet. His maternal grandparents are football player and sports broadcaster Tom Harmon and the 1940s b-movie actress Elyse Knox. His maternal uncle is actor Mark Harmon.[citation needed]

Nelson married model/actress Yvette Stefens on July 14, 1995. He filed for divorce in Los Angeles County Superior Court on March 10, 2009, citing irreconcilable differences. The divorce was final in September 2011.[3] Nelson married Kari Ahlstrom on September 23, 2013 and they have one son.[citation needed]

He appeared in the film The Still Life in 2006.


Nelson plays a variety of musical instruments, including the bass guitar, electric and acoustic guitars, and piano. Marc Tanner and the twins wrote After the Rain album in 1990, after being signed to Geffen Records in 1989. Their singles, "(I Can't Live Without Your) Love and Affection", "After the Rain", "More Than Ever", "Only Time Will Tell" and "(You Got Me) All Shook Up," all held positions on Billboard's Top 40 with "Love and Affection" reaching No. 1 in September 1990, after receiving airplay on MTV where they also had No. 1 music videos.[citation needed]

When "Love and Affection" reached the No. 1, the Nelsons landed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the only family to have No. 1 records in three successive generations (their grandfather, Ozzie Nelson, had a No. 1 song with "And Then Some" in 1934, and their father, Ricky Nelson, had No. 1 songs with "Poor Little Fool" in 1960 and "Travelin' Man" in 1962). However, as the British music magazine, NME, pointed out in October 1990, this feat was also achieved by Red Foley, Pat Boone and Debby Boone.[2]

Nelson co-founded the Stone Canyon Records label with his brother in 1995 after leaving Geffen Records. He released seven albums on that label.[4]

Matthew and Gunnar Nelson released a new rendition of "Jingle Bell Rock", on Razor and Tie Record's Monster Ballads Xmas album, for Christmas 2007.[5] The Nelson brothers previously collaborated with Razor and Tie on the Monsters of Rock and Monster Ballads albums. In May 2007, Matthew and Gunnar Nelson released a new rendition of their father's No. 1 song, "Travelin' Man", on a limited edition compilation album, A Song for My Father. In addition, Nelson is a guest performer in the celebrity rock band, Scrap Metal, which was founded by his twin brother. They planned a tour with Kelly Keagy of Night Ranger and Eric Martin of Mr. Big.[6]

Nelson appeared on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of the 90s with his twin brother Gunnar Nelson. Nelson's No. 1 song "(Can't Live Without Your) Love and Affection" was voted and ranked No. 96 in the special, honoring the 100 greatest hits of the nineties. Nelson also recorded the 2007 American Music Awards TV show production music for Dick Clark Productions. It was the third consecutive year that he played bass guitar and recorded music for program.[7]

The Nelson twins perform their own music as Nelson, as well as a touring musical and multimedia show called "Ricky Nelson Remembered", featuring the music of their late father as well as videos of the family's history. At Christmas time, the twins tour with a retrospective musical and multimedia show called Christmas With The Nelsons.[citation needed]

Solo career[edit]

Matt is the co-founder of modern rock trio RED37 formed in 2003 with JJ Farris and Brian 'Dogboy' Burwell...with two albums recorded at Sound City Studios of Dave Grohl's 'Sound City' fame, produced by Keith Olsen and Jim Wirt. Gordon was partners with producer Keith Olsen and owner of LA studio Goodnight L.A.

Matthew played bass guitar on The American Music Awards and Billboard Music Awards shows for Dick Clark Productions for 13 years (ending in 2018).


with Nelson[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

  • After The Rain (1990)
  • Because They Can (1995)
  • Imaginator (1996)
  • The Silence is Broken (1997)
  • Life (1999)
  • Lightning Strikes Twice (2010)
  • Peace Out (2015)

Live album[edit]

  • Perfect Storm (2010)

Compilation albums[edit]

  • Best of Nelson (2004)
  • Movin' On: The Still Life soundtrack (2006)
  • Before The Rain: The Demos 1986-1990 - 2010 Frontiers Records

as The Nelsons[edit]

  • Brother Harmony (1998)

as Matthew & Gunnar Nelson[edit]

  • Like Father, Like Sons (2000)
  • This Christmas[8] (2015)
  • This Christmas Too[9] (2016)


  1. ^ "Billboard Chart Listing".
  2. ^ a b c Tobler, John (1992). NME Rock 'N' Roll Years (1stRED 37 is managed by Kore Management/Gordon Perry. ed.). London: Reed International Books Ltd. p. 477. CN 5585.
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on February 3, 2014. Retrieved January 23, 2014.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ "Matthew and Gunnar Nelson". Retrieved March 13, 2016.
  5. ^ "Billboard Press Release". Archived from the original on February 25, 2009. Retrieved June 4, 2010.
  6. ^ "WME Entertainment". Retrieved March 13, 2016.
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on September 8, 2008. Retrieved January 6, 2008.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  8. ^ "Billboard Magazine".
  9. ^ "Pittsburgh Music Magazine".

External links[edit]