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Perfect Pedigree

Lukas Nelson and Promise of the Real
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Left to right: Anthony LoGerfo, Lukas Nelson, Tato Melgar and Corey McCormick are Promise of the Real.Photo courtesy of Jim Eckenrode
 Posted: 8:45 AM October 25, 2012

Guitarist Lukas Nelson — son of Willie Nelson — is following in his father's footsteps and making a place for himself in the music industry. With Promise of the Real, featuring drummer Anthony LoGerfo, percussionist Tato Melgar and bassist Corey McCormick, Lukas Nelson and the band are making their way into the hearts of fans on their own down-home, gritty, rock 'n' roll merits.

"Dad and I play together when we can, and we write together a lot," says the 23-year-old Nelson during a telephone interview. "Touring is really the only time we get to spend with each other. We're similar as artists, except that Dad's acoustic, and we (the band) play rock."

Lukas Nelson and Promise of the Real will present shows at 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 27-28, at Jackson Wellsprings, 2253 Highway 99 N., Ashland. Tickets cost $15 in advance and are available at Music Coop and Jackson Wellsprings in Ashland or Tickets will cost $18 at the door.

If you go

Who: Lukas Nelson and Promise of the Real

When: 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 27-28

Where: Jackson Wellsprings, 2253 Highway 99 N., Ashland

Tickets: $15 in advance and available at Music Coop and Jackson Wellsprings in Ashland or; $18 at the door

Call: 541-482-3776 or see

Nelson found himself on an intense writing jag while touring for 15 weeks during the summer of 2011.

"I was inspired by what was happening," he says. "I was up every night until the wee hours of the morning just writing in the back of the bus."

The result was the band's second, full-length album, "Wasted," released in April. The record is about wasting time, life and creativity and being reminded to stay true to values and ideals. For Nelson and Promise of the Real, that's always been about family and loved ones.

Nelson made acoustic recordings of his songs, and the band took them into a studio, turning the 14 tracks into true Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real arrangements.

"He's improved as a songwriter," LoGerfo says. "His writing is a little harder, more rockin' and more danceable."

Nelson and the band's eponymous debut album was released in late 2010.

In August, "Wasted" was rereleased with three new tracks: "Colorado," "Hard to Love Me" and "Wanted to Try." The new songs join a collection already called "the first great album of the band's career" on and praised for a sound that "defies classification" by Yahoo! Music.

Nelson grew up in Austin, Texas, the north shore of Maui, Hawaii, and on the road.

"I think of music as primary colors," he says. "Back to the drum, rhythmic communication between tribes and the first recorded music. Like the complexity of the universe, the colors blend, and new ones are created exponentially, building a complex system of overlapping influences and new genres."

Last year, Nelson and Promise of the Real made live appearances on "The Late Show with David Letterman," "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" and "Jimmy Kimmel Live!"

Nelson plays on nine of the songs on his father's 2012 "Heroes," along with Merle Haggard, Kris Kristofferson and others.


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