Published on December 20th, 2018 | by Darren Paltrowitz


Nelson’s Gunnar Nelson On Family, Productivity, DIY Work Ethic, Upcoming Projects & More

It has been over 25 years since After The Rain, the debut studio album from brothers Matthew and Gunnar Nelson — as released under the “Nelson” moniker — hit stores in 1990. After The Rain would quickly sell more than three million copies, while its first of four hit singles went to #1.

However, not everyone realizes that After The Rain was far from the first musical success experienced within the Nelson family. As the sons of teen idol Ricky Nelson and actress Kristin Harmon — and the grandsons of actor and bandleader Ozzie Nelson and actress Harriet Hilliard — Matthew and Gunnar Nelson are part of the third generation of famous Nelsons. And that is without factoring in that Matthew and Gunnar Nelson’s uncle is actor Mark Harmon of the long-standing CBS hit NCIS.

Following the success of After The Rain, the Nelsons released another album through Geffen Records — 1995’s Because They Can — before going independent. And simply put, Matthew and Gunnar have never stopped touring or recording. 2015 delivered Peace Out and the holiday-themed This Christmas. 2016 brought a followup to the latter, This Christmas Too; over the last three years, the brothers have scored two Top 10 Billboard Christmas singles. The Nelson brothers currently have multiple touring configurations including a rock band-oriented show, a holiday show, a live show with an orchestra, a touring concert tribute to their father, and the Scrap Metal hair-metal tribute show.

Speaking of Christmas, the Christmas With The Nelsons live show — starring brothers Matthew and Gunnar Nelson — tells the story of three family Christmases in the lives of what many people call “America’s First Family of Entertainment.” A series of heart-warming multimedia live concerts, the tour wrapped earlier this month with a December 16th show in Arizona. For those looking to see The Nelsons in holiday form next year, know to expect Christmas classics the Nelson family way, as interwoven with fast-paced humor, soaring sibling vocals, and state-of-the-art big screen video.

I spoke to Gunnar Nelson by phone in the midst of the 2018 holiday season and had the chance to talk music, sports, family, productivity and more with the Nashville-based musician. The full interview recording is embedded below for your listening pleasure. More information on all Nelson-related projects can be found online at, while the brothers themselves can be followed via @MatthewAndGun on Twitter.

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About the Author

Darren Paltrowitz is a New York resident with over 20 years of entertainment industry experience. He began working around the music business as a teenager, interning for the manager of his then-favorite band Superdrag. Since then, he has worked with a wide array of artists including OK Go, They Might Be Giants, Mike Viola, Tracy Bonham, Loudness, Rachael Yamagata, and Amanda Palmer. Darren's writing has appeared in dozens of outlets including the New York Daily News, Inquisitr, The Daily Meal, The Hype Magazine, All Music Guide, Guitar World,, Businessweek, Chicago Tribune, L.A. Times, and the Jewish Journal. Beyond being "Editor At Large" for The Hype Magazine, Darren is also the host of weekly "Paltrocast With Darren Paltrowitz" series, which airs on dozens on television and digital networks. He has also co-authored 2 published books, 2018's "Pocket Change: Your Happy Money" (Book Web Publishing) and 2019's "Good Advice From Professional Wrestling" (6623 Press), and co-hosts the world's only known podcast about David Lee Roth, "The DLR Cast."

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