The Wandering Sons keep Nielsen brothers busy

By Jim Hagerty

Staff Writer

Life is good for Rockford natives Daxx Nielsen and Miles Nielsen. Both have played a number of musical roles in the last few years. One of the most prominent is their respective places in the The Wandering Sons, the band led by Appleton, Wis., singer/songwriter Cory Chisel.

Besides a fast-moving solo record and touring schedule, Miles is the band’s bass player, while Daxx plays dates on drums when he’s not busy working in Nashville, Tenn.

Currently touring the Eastern United States with Chisel, the Nielsens have played a string of notable shows, including Carnegie Hall and an Oct. 9 slot on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon—both in New York City. In between shows, the band recorded a five-song set for NPR’s World Café, which aired Wednesday, Dec. 2.

Monday, Dec. 7, Cory Chisel and The Wandering Sons joined Brendan Benson (The Raconteurs) on Philadelphia’s World Café Live stage.

Daxx is also a part of the all-star Miles Nielsen band, which also includes Daniel McMahon, Andy Scarpaci and a host of others, when not touring with other acts.

Since Harmony Riley, the band partially composed of Daxx and Miles, disbanded, Daxx has kept time for a handful of notables including Dick Dale, A Fine Frenzy and Cheap Trick, filling in for Bun E. Carlos.

Cory Chisel and The Wandering Sons are touring to support their first full-length album, Death Won’t Send a Letter (RCA/Black Seal), released this fall. The 12-song project was produced by Joe Chiccarelli (The Shins, The White Stripes). Benson co-wrote the first single, “Born Again,” and his Raconteurs bandmates Jack Lawrence and Patrick Keeler guest on the album, along with My Morning Jacket’s Carl Broemel.

From Philadelphia, The Wandering Sons make their way back to the Midwest including a Nielsen-charged Harmony Riley reunion show Saturday, Dec. 26, at Giovanni’s in Rockford. The Wandering Sons will play Cranky Pat’s—Chisel’s Neenah, Wis., stomping grounds—Thursday, Dec. 31, for a New Year’s Eve show.

More about Cory Chisel and The Wandering Sons, including sample tracks and tour schedules, can be found at the band’s Web site at and Myspace page at Miles and Daxx Nielsen can be found at and, respectively.

From the Dec. 9-15, 2009 issue

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