Nelson first began working with Henson in 1965, when Frank Oz was drafted, and he needed a new right-hand performer for Rowlf the Dog on 'The Jimmy Dean Show.' When Oz failed his physical, Nelson stayed on board performing various characters for Henson's TV specials, including the full-bodied Thog the Monster and developing Kermit's nephew Robin. He joined 'Sesame Street' in its second season developing the characters of Count von Count and Mr. Sunffleupagus, among others. A fruitful relationship with Richard Hunt, inspired the creation of the Two-Headed Monster. On 'The Muppet Show,' Nelson performed a variety of one-off characters, with some proving so popular that they became recurring sketches, including Lew Zealand and Crazy Harry. He also had the distinction of supplying the announcer voice for every Muppet and 'Sesame Street' production.
Nelson remained a pivotal member of the Muppet team throughout the 80s and 90s. Unfortunately, Nelson had to begin limiting his Muppet work starting in the 2000s due to health issues with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and prostate cancer. He still performs Count for 'Sesame Street' however and provided his notable announcer voice to 'The Muppets.'
'The Muppet Show': The Announcer, Floyd Pepper, Crazy Harry, Robin the Frog, Lew Zealand, Camilla the Chicken, Thog, Various Characters
'The Muppet Movie': Floyd Pepper, Crazy Harry, Robin the Frog, Lew Zealand, Camilla the Chicken
'The Great Muppet Caper': Floyd Pepper, Pops, and Lew Zealand
'The Dark Crystal': Dying Skeksis Emperor, Skeksis High Priest
'Fraggle Rock': Gobo Fraggle, Marjory the Trash Heap, Pa Gorg, Various Fraggles and Doozers
'Muppets Take Manhattan': Camilla the Chicken, Floyd Pepper, Lew Zealand, Crazy Harry and Pops
'The Muppet Christmas Carol': Robin the Frog as Tiny Tim Cratchit, Statler as Jacob Marley, Ma Bear, Floyd Pepper, Lew Zealand, Voice of Ghost of Christmas Present, Mr. Applegate
'Muppet Treasure Island': Blind Pew, Mad Monty, Singing Food, Various Characters
'Muppets from Space': Robin the Frog, Floyd, Statler, Ubergonzo
'The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland': Pestie, Grouch Mayor, Grouch Cop
'The Muppets': Announcer