Derek Nelson Is Kinda Dreamy.

So I’ll be honest. I don’t make it to as many shows as I used to. When I worked for Radio 1190 in Boulder, CO there was a month where I literally was at 24 shows in 29 nights. Outside of when I’ve toured or worked at a venue, I haven’t come close to matching that since. Quite often, I’ll get myself psyched to go to a show but end up staying at home crying alone in a corner with a bottle of wine listening to my mom’s old Carole King records doing other important things…cause I’m important… There is, however, a local Chicago artist that I do my absolute best to make it out to see as frequently as possible. His name is Derek Nelson. And he’s kinda dreamy.

I met Derek Nelson through a mutual friend named Pete Falknor (this guy). I met them at the studio where they were hard at work recording Derek’s debut EP “Something Obscure”. I listened and watched with intrigue as the pieces of a song that would eventually become “Ballad of Big Shoulders” came together.

Knowing little about Derek before this, I was impressed to find this batch of songs were really his first effort.

I made it out to his EP Release show at The Double Door mostly to see why he had chosen that venue. I thought the place was a little big to house an EP release for a singer songwriter. I arrived to a packed house as the picture shows above. Derek and his band blew myself and the crowd away. I should mention, this was on a Wednesday night!

There was something magical about Derek Nelson.

Since that point, I’ve watched Derek perform quite a few times. I observe him probably more intensely than any local act. He has a stage presence that is at the same time shy as it is domineering. He has the ability to seem at first a humble servant of the crowd, and then in an instant is their lord and master, filling the room with energy and passion you would not expect. Even in the softer more subtle moments of his live show, Derek has the ability to draw your attention inward yet keep you at a distance. It’s a fascinating, often frustrating mystique. I’m still unsure if he even knows he’s doing any of this which leads to even more interest on my part.

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Derek’s next show is tonight at The Hideout. Come see for yourself what I’m talking about. In case you’d rather cry in a corner to Carole King songs, I’ll be writing a review of the show and hopefully posting some clips from it as well this weekend. The details are below. Enjoy.