The second son of bandleader Ozzie Nelson and singer Harriet Hilliard, Ricky and his brother were children when they appeared on their father's radio series The Adventures Of Ozzie and Harriet, which developed into a film (Here Come The Nelsons) and a long-running and very popular TV series. By his early teens, Ricky was playing clarinet, drums and guitar and adopted the rockabilly style he heard on Sun Records releases. His first single was a cover of Fats Domino's I'm Walkin' in 1957, leading to live appearances at various state fairs with the Four Preps. Signed to Imperial, he sold a million and had a Number 1 hit with Be-Bop Baby and his music gained further popularity when he sang on the ongoing family TV series. He topped the US charts in 1958, selling over two million copies of Sharon Sheeley's song Poor Little Fool, triggering a string of hits like Lonesome Town, It's Late, Travelin' Man, Hello Mary Lou, Young World, Teenage Idol and For You. Ricky also appeared in movies and gradually his style mellowed from rock'n'roll as he became a pioneer of country-rock. His popularity waned but he had a re-birth in 1972 with his own song Garden Party and continued to tour, with a more mature sound. On December 26, 1985, he died in a plane crash while on tour in the south of USA.