Their grandpa's name is Ozzie, but not the one who bites bats. Ozzie Nelson had a No. 1 hit song in 1935 and became a television star with the Nelson family. His son Ricky Nelson made a generation of teens swoon in the early '60s with hits like "Hello Mary Lou."
Now Gunnar and Matthew Nelson are trekking up the charts these days following Dad and Grandpa but definitely doing it their own way.The identical twin sons of the late Rick Nelson have carved out a niche of melodic hard rock like "(Can't Live Without Your) Love and Affection" and "After the Rain." Known simply as "Nelson" (with a four-member band behind them) the duo are known for their fine guitar work and long, flowing manes of blond hair.
Did they stroll to stardom on the family name and their Nordic good looks? It's interesting to read that at one point they were living in their '65 Mustang and surviving on the handouts of their actress sister Tracy, co-star of "Father Dowling." Having survived their parents' bitter divorce and the trauma of press reports that their father's plane crashed in 1985 because of cocaine free-basing (government investigators ruled that a faulty heater caused the crash) the twins are now on a 40-city "After the Rain" tour.
With two top 10 hits from their platinum album, the Nelsons will appear in Salt Lake City Wednesday, April 4, at Kingsbury Hall with House of the Lords opening for them. But don't bother calling for ticket prices - the concert sold out a week ago.
If you're curious to see what this latest generation of Nelson stars is like, tune into MTV. The Nelson video is rotated so often it it has developed a gravitational field. My 14-year-old daughter is pulled to the screen every time they appear!