Jason Nelson Highlights 2024 Realizing the Dream Concert

by Dr. Elisabetta Zengaro
Communications Specialist, Division of Community Affairs

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Gospel artist Jason Nelson delivered a performance filled with inspiration and hope during the 2024 Realizing the Dream Concert in the Concert Hall of the Moody Music Building at The University of Alabama on Sunday, Jan. 14.

“We are here to celebrate one of the fathers of the civil rights movement, one whose influential legacy has spread throughout this country … and we are so grateful to be here,” said Nelson after he took the stage, referring to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

In keeping with this year’s theme of “Realizing the Dream Through Vision and Leadership,” student representatives from the three institutions that sponsor the Realizing the Dream series (Stillman College, Shelton State Community College, and UA) recognized this year’s Legacy Banquet Award recipients. Prior to the start of the concert, they also acknowledged the legacy of three former Mountaintop Award recipients who died in 2023. Those three individuals were Dr. Arthur L. Bacon, Rev. Frank Dukes and Mary Allen Jolley.

A gospel singer and songwriter, Nelson began his musical career with the debut album “I Shall Live” in 2005, followed by “Place of Worship” in 2008. He rose to fame in 2012 with “Shifting the Atmosphere,” which placed No. 79 on Billboard 200 and No. 3 on the Top Gospel Albums chart. With the 2015 album “Jesus Revealed,” he topped the Top Gospel Albums chart, which also charted No. 141 on Billboard 200. His most recent release was “Close” in 2021.

Throughout the evening, Nelson delivered an upbeat performance of songs embodying messages of hope and faith, opening with “Residue” off his latest album, “Close,” which instantly brought the crowd to its feet. He performed many of his popular songs, such as “I’m Nothing Without You” from the top album “Shifting the Atmosphere,” reminding audience members of the power of faith.

While the crowd danced along to familiar hits that blended Nelson’s signature sound with hints of jazz, R&B and pop, attendees were also treated to two of Nelson’s new songs.

Embracing a new concert tradition, Siambria Cabbil, Imani Collier, Kearis Cook, Kennedy Lairy and Lorella Moore, students representing Stillman, Shelton State and UA, led the audience in singing “We Shall Overcome” to conclude the program.