Jazz Bridge in Old City Philadelphia! presents drummer Alan Nelson
at Arch Street Friends Meeting House — 4th and Arch Street in Philadelphia — on Thursday, March 21st. Tickets are $10, $5 for students, and are available only at the door. Show time is 7:30. Information: 215-517-8337.
It’s for good reason that Alan Nelson is often referred to as a master drummer. As a child, he began as a tap dancer, progressed to African dance, graduated to hand drums, and thanks to another percussion great, Norman Connors
, switched to the traps, falling under the spell of greats like Art Blakey
, Philly Joe Jones
, and a man Nelson considers his main influence, Max Roach
. Since those auspicious beginnings, Nelson has played with just about everyone and just about everywhere. I probably know every pot hole and bump on the Jersey Turnpike
, he’s fond of saying. His journey has included stints with John Coltrane
, the Heath Brothers
, Shirley Scott
, James Moody
, and Jimmy Garrison
. In the mid-1970s, he became a part of the New York scene, playing with Hilton Ruiz
, George Adams
, and what was the beginning of a 12-year association with trumpeter Hannibal Marvin Peterson
. As far as he’s come and gone musically and otherwise, he’s true to his Philadelphia roots and his Philadelphia sound. They call it a Philly Tip
, he says of his sound and drumming style. It’s a certain kind of swing. A certain sound that Philadelphia players just seem to have.
For information, call 610-745-3011 or log on to Jazz Bridge
Jazz Bridge is a Philadelphia-based non-profit organization dedicated to assisting area jazz and blues musicians in need. Their Jazz Bridge in Old City Philadelphia program is one in a series at this venue, along with four other area locales.