Jon D. Nelson

Composer - Designer - Multimedia Producer

Jon D. Nelson, 26 year old artist from Madison, WI, composes music that has been selected for performances by various ensembles throughout the United States, including performances by the Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestras, Muncie Symphony Orchestra, and several collegiate ensembles. Nelson attended Ball State University, where he received his bachelor's in music composition studying closely with Dr. Michael Pounds, and Dr. Jody Nagel. Active in a program with about 450 music majors, Nelson was asked to compose music for the university’s annual fine arts video newsletters; he also wrote for some of the school’s flagship ensembles including the jazz lab ensemble and the chamber choir, as well as for numerous student projects spanning diverse forms of media: short films, mobile applications, commercial advertisements and documentaries. As an experienced keyboardist, Nelson has participated in more than more than 200 studio recording sessions, many of which were tied to five years of experience as a founding member of rock-band, Trackless. Trackless gained success through a loyal fan base in the Midwest, as well as throughout the Los Angeles area, where the band was able to develop a relationship with legendary recording engineer, Bob Clearmountain and other artists associated with Apogee Studios in Santa Monica. In 2016, Nelson founded Resonance, a program dedicated to mentoring music students with passion for creating new music and guiding the premiers of new student works. Going into the program’s third year, Resonance has facilitated dozens of world premiere performances, received support from local organizations, the Sun Prairie Education Foundation, The Sun Prairie Arts Alliance, and gained recognition from central Wisconsin’s most prominent newspaper, the Wisconsin State Journal, among other press. Nelson remains an active collaborator and teacher in the Madison area, working as a piano instructor at Prairie Music & Arts a respected community arts school with 20 years of history in the Madison area.


“I feel that through music and art, expression at the most human level, we artists may have a chance at sharing statements of great importance with the world, and with people who need to hear them most. My creativity as a composer has always been driven by connections to nature, and the innate beauty our world holds, of which we humans only hold a very small share. As our world’s climate crisis becomes more imminent by the day, I feel a sense of artistic responsibility to dedicate my creative efforts toward exposing passion for this urgent issue. As such, the most current and ongoing projects of mine are fervently tied to this duty. The scientific consensus is clear and I want to do my part in spreading the word.“

Jon Lakeside Portrait 1.jpg
Nelson leads students in Sun Prairie, WI through a rehearsal of a students composition in preparation for Resonance 2018 capstone concert.

Nelson leads students in Sun Prairie, WI through a rehearsal of a students composition in preparation for Resonance 2018 capstone concert.

Prélude N˚ 3 - Croquis de Wolf River

"Wolf River Sketches" - Original work for solo piano, composed 2014

“Common Mind” World Premiere

“Common Mind” - Three Movement Commissioned work for Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestras

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