Nelson Patton


Nelson Patton is a NYC and Atlanta-based instrumental duo of Dave Nelson and Marlon Patton. Inspired by ambient minimalism, polyrhythmic composition, and orchestral sonorities, the duo layers trombone, drums, and electronics to create a rich palette of improvised textures that evolve over time, creating a transportive experience that often swells to dramatic crescendos of orchestral fanfare. The pair met at the University of Georgia where they played in jazz groups together in the Athens music scene. Dave went on to study classical music, leading him to New York City where he developed a dynamic career in its contemporary classical and indy rock scenes. Marlon moved to Atlanta, becoming one of the top jazz drummers in the southeast. Both accomplished sidemen, session players, producers and engineers, Dave and Marlon bring a wide range of experience to their music, creating a sound full of heart and maturity.

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Founded in 2013, Nelson Patton has released an EP as well as a full length album featuring Lonnie Holley on vocals. This collaboration led to a meaningful and fruitful relationship that continues to this day. The duo’s contribution to Lonnie’s latest LP “Mith” was in integral part of that album’s success, resulting in critical acclaim and its inclusion on multiple year end lists for 2018. Lonnie’s short film made to accompany their track “I Snuck Off The Slave Ship” was premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival. In addition, the duo often serves as Lonnie’s touring band, performing across the U.S. and abroad. Notable performances include “Le Guess Who” festival in Utrecht, LA Broad Museum’s Summer Happenings Festival, and an opening run with Animal Collective.

In addition to their busy touring schedule, Nelson Patton is currently working on a second LP, the basis of which are a series of improvisations recorded at their respective studios when they could find the time. In 2018, the duo was selected as artists in residency for the Transient Project at Air Serenbe, Atlanta, Ga. Given two weeks in secluded cabins in the Ga countryside, they used the time to develop their album project, drawing inspiration from classical symphonic forms, modern production techniques, and Lonnie Holley’s concept of the “flip flip” (using digital tools to transform analog ideas) to elevate their original inspirations into fully formed works.

Dave Nelson

Dave Nelson

Marlon Patton

<Marlon Patton

Lonnie Holley (guest artist)

Lonnie Holley


Profile in ArtsATL

GPB Ga Playlist

"Beautiful and deep. This is for the most part a jazz tone poem filled with Lonnie Holley's prayerful intonations for a better world. Highly recommended if you like your music full of prescient space and left of center."
~ Jim White

"I went in to do vocals for one track, but loved what they were doing so much we ended up doing four, including the title track."
~ Lonnie Holley

"...the sound is so accessible: catchy, fun and sugary"

"So is it jazz? A very good question. Perhaps the best response is that it feels like jazz, rolling and reacting; and so it is: the buoyant jazz of the early hours, when everyone is happy and nobody is drunk."
~ Richard Allen, A Closer Listen





Management & Booking:

Dave Nelson


Julie Shama Stephens, Think Music