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Pianist to perform at Historic USO on August 26

Historic USO of the Upper Mojave Desert Nick Rogers– In its tradition of showcasing exciting musical talent, the Historical Society of the Upper Mojave Desert is proud to present, in concert, pianist Josh Nelson at the Historic USO Building in Ridgecrest for a one-time performance, MUSIC IN THE DESERT NIGHT on Saturday, August 26 at 8 pm, with doors opening at 7:30.

Pianist Josh Nelson

Native Californian pianist-composer-bandleader Josh Nelson has performed with some of Jazz-dom’s most respected names, including two-time Grammy Award®-wining jazz vocalist Kurt Elling, American bebop jazz saxophonist and arranger Benny Golson, composer, record producer and radio personality, Dave Koz, and Grammy Award®-winning drummer and member of the jazz fusion group, “Weather Report,” Peter Erskine.  About Josh Nelson, Erskine says, “Josh possesses those rarest of musical attributes: a touch, a tone, and ‘sound’ that are all identifiably his own.” Nelson performed with a legendary vocalist, Natalie Cole, for six years and continues to tour with such famed vocalists as singer-songwriter Gaby Moreno, American singer, actress and television talk show host Freda Payne, mezzo-soprano Alicia Olatuja, and Grammy®-nominated jazz vocalist, Sara Gazarek, among other music notables. He has taught jazz at Soka University in Aliso Viejo, CA and most recently at Cal State University, Northridge. In 2006, Nelson was a semi-finalist in the prestigious Thelonious Monk International Jazz Piano Competition.

Nelson’s albums are numerous. Following its 2004’s debut, “Anticipation,” the 2007 follow-up, “Let it Go,” was critically acclaimed by Jazz Times and Jazz Review. 2009’s “I Hear a Rhapsody” had him re-imagining Jerry Goldsmith’s haunting “Theme from Chinatown,” while contributing seven stand-out originals. With 2011’s sci-fi-influenced “Discoveries,” Nelson introduced his Discovery Project, an immersive multi-media presentation combining video, performance art, light and art installations with his original music. This was followed by his project’s 2015 “Exploring Mars,” which melded evocative musical themes to spectacular NASA/JPL video footage of the Red Planet. Nelson’s latest, “The Sky Remains,” is his personal love letter to his hometown, Los Angeles: its lurid tales, hidden gems, its icons and lost history. The work blends narrative and music in a persuasive fashion. Says Nelson, “I’m hoping that people who hear these stories might be interested in learning more about the fascinating history of Los Angeles.

Light refreshments will be available.  Tickets, priced at $20 each, may be purchased online at ., or from the HSUMD Book Shop—concert presented by Deus Ex Machina.