Chris Nelson has been playing music for over 25 years and has written a large volume of songs, mostly under the name of his former band, Fishkill, although on most of the recordings, he played all the instruments. Some of the songs have even reached high chart positions on a variety of Internet radio stations. He released a total of four discs under this name.
In 2004, he turned the recording project into a live band and began playing music throughout the central Pennsylvania area. The band even participated in the 2005 Bodog Battle of the Bands in Philadelphia, where they made an impression on the crowd as something a little out of the ordinary. This is a common reaction to Nelson's music. The band, however, only recorded six songs, three of which are live performances. Poor audience turnout and the loss of their first drummer altered the creative chemistry of the band and ultimately, they parted ways.
After the band broke up in 2006, Nelson began compiling songs that would be used to re-launch himself as a solo musician. This time, he started leaning toward a more folk-like sound, while keeping the spirit of rock and roll intact. What followed was a new sound known as "Dark Folk". The music leaps from style to style, often creating something
new in the process. He’s not afraid of experimentation, either and some of the tracks contain odd match-ups of style that seem to work together.
In 2009, he released his first solo CD, "Nightfall" which features all new songs which range from hard rock to acoustic folk. He currently performs songs live as an acoustic performer, but still plays with a full band on record -- made up of himself playing all the instruments, unless there is a guest musician.
In 2011, he released the follow up to this disc, “The Invisible Man” as a digital only release. The album has gotten regional attention around central Pennsylvania with tracks being played on both terrestrial and Internet radio stations.
His song “In Praise Of Failure” was featured as one of Discover the Areas Music and Entertainment Scene (DAMES) of PA’s top five songs of 2011.
This latest collection of songs is no different as the music leaps from style to style, often creating something new in the process. He’s not afraid of experimentation, either and some of the tracks contain odd match-ups of style that seem to
work together. This album celebrates almost 20 years of music, revisitng his earliest recordings and containing some previously unreleased material. The disc features selections from the four Fishkill albums albums plus three previously unreleased tracks.
Many of these songs have been staples in his live shows, especially his all-original sets at the Porch, a restaurant in Myerstown, Pennsylvania that highlights local music. The audience may be familiar with the songs, but may have never heard the studio versions. Some feature guest appearances from other indie musicians, including the members of his old band, Fishkill. Nelson thinks this will give them a chance to hear them all in one place for the first time.
There were also things that he was unhappy with on the original recordings that he finally had a chance to fix. Some instruments were added to mixes, others were taken away. Not a single recording was left unfiltered or electronically altered in one way or another.
The recordings have all been carefully remixed and remastered in order to bring the quality as close to today’s industry standards as possible. In some cases, parts of songs had to be re-recorded due to tonal issues or an upgraded sound. One song was re-recorded in its entirety.
His music has been featured on WRVV 97.3 FM’s Local Music Program “Open Mic Night with Michael Anthony Smith” broadcasting in the Central Pennsylvania region.
He has also worked with Michael Ellenbogen, author of “The Insider’s Guide to Saving Money” on a song about his life with Alzheimer’s disease. He also helped establish the Michael Ellenbogen Movement, a group focusing on younger victims of Alzheimer's.
He has also been active in fundraising efforts for veterans, organizing the annual “Sound Off For Vets” fundraiser on Harrisburg’s City Island featuring local musicians and bands. The concert raises money and awareness for the Wounded Warrior Project, an organization assisting wounded combat veterans from the wars in Iraq and Afghnaistan come to terms with their injuries and rebuild their lives.