RICKY NELSON BIOGRAPHY & FILMOGRAPHY:
Ricky Nelson was born on May 8th, 1940 in Teaneck, New Jersey to parents Ozzie Nelson, a big band leader and of Swedish decent and his mother was Harriet Hilliard Nelson a big band vocalist. His birth name was Eric Hilliard Nelson, but he became better known to most as Ricky Nelson. As a child, Ricky suffered from asthma and he was very insecure as a child.
Ricky attended Garder Street Public School and Bancroft Junior High. He then went on to High School at Hollywood High between 1954 and 1958. He was involved in Football in school as well as tennis. Ricky was also into music laying the clarinet and drums as a teenager. His parents moved to Los Angeles briefly for work and he was raised by his grandmother, but he soon joined them in Hollywood in 1942.
He began getting involved in the entertainment industry first working a radio series called, "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet" (1949) which his father was the head writer for. Both Nelson boys, David age twelve and Ricky age eight at the time first appeared on February 20th, 1949 in the episode, "Invitation to Dinner" and this followed with his first screen appearance in 1952 on, "Here Come The Nelsons". It was this hit film that Ricky's father Ozzie decided it would be easy for the radio show to transfer to television small screen. In 1952, "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet" made it's television debut and became one of the longest running television sitcoms in history.
Ricky was a talented actor, but an even more talented musical artist. He recorded his first single which debuted on a television version of his sitcom and became a number one album titled, "Ricky". In 1958, he followed with having a number one single, "Poor Little Fool" and then in 1959 he was honored with a Golden Globe Award for Most Promising Male Newcomer nomination following his starring role in the film, "Rio Bravo" alongside greats John Wayne and Dean Martin.
Ricky was signed to a five year record contract with Imperial Records where he was given the ability to approve the song selection, sleeve artwork and other various production deals.
Ozzie was very keen on having Ricky attend college, however, he was making so much money that he really saw no need to go that route in his life. Between 1957 and 1973, Ricky had placed fifty three songs on the Billboard Hot 100 and he also had nineteen top-ten hits.
In 1966, the popular television series was cancelled and Ricky continued to work making various television guest appearances.
He had a very successful career in the entertainment industry. He was also married one time. His wife was Sharon Kristin Harmon on April 20th, 1963. The couple had four children, Tracy, twin sons; Gunnar and Mathew and one more son named Sam. They divorced in 1982. Nelson had one more son with Georgeann Crew, Eric Jude Crewe. He was engaged to be married one more time to Helen Blair, a part time model and exotic animal trainer, but sadly both Blair and Nelson passed away on December 31st, 1985 in an airplane crash in De Kalb, Texas.
Nelsons remains were lost when being transmitted from Texas to California which delayed his funeral proceedings. He is now interred at Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills in Los Angeles, California.
Ricky Nelson did battle with drug use during his lifetime. He expereimented heavily with marijuana and also tried mescaline as well as having an addiction to cocain use. Neslon was also very popular with women throughout his lifetime and seemed to gravitate towards women with troubled backgrounds.
Nelson was inducted into the Hall of Fame on January 21st, 1987 and was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Neslon was also voted the 91st Greatest Rock 'n' Roll Artist of all time by Rolling Stone.
1984 High School U.S.A.
1981 CBS Library
1978 Three on a Date
1978 The Love Boat
1977 The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries
1977 Tales of the Unexpected
1972-1974 Owen Marshall: Counselor at Law
1974 Sonic Boom
1973 The Streets of San Francisco
1970 Swing Out, Sweet Land
1970 The Resurrection of Broncho Billy
1969 The Over-the-Hill Gang
1966 ABC Stage 67
1952-1966 The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet
1965 Love and Kisses
1961 G.E. True Theater
1960 The Wackiest Ship in the Army
1959 Rio Bravo
1953 The Story of Three Loves
1952 Here Come the Nelsons