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Peter Himmelman is a terrific singer-songwriter. Earnest and passionate, he has a sturdy melodic sense and deeply reflective lyrical bent adept at rooting out the toughest contradictions of everyday life and values.
Lyrically, he’s at the top of his game and, creatively, he shows no signs of flagging anytime soon.
Peter Himmelman is a Grammy- and Emmy-nominated songwriter, composer, stage performer, visual artist, and lecturer from Minnesota who formerly played in the Minneapolis indie rock band Sussman Lawrence.
Himmelman has been playing in and with bands since sixth grade in the Minneapolis suburb of St. Louis Park. He has released a dozen rock albums since 1986, the first half dozen on major corporate record labels, others on smaller indies, others self-released, all of which have received love from critics. He is married to Maria Dylan, a lawyer and adopted daughter of Bob Dylan.
Himmelman attracts some of the best musicians in the world to play with him. The rhythm section on his 2010 album, The Boat That Carries Us, features Leland Sklar, who played with Carole King, James Taylor, and dozens of others on bass, and Jim Keltner, the go-to drummer for John Lennon, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr on their solo albums and tours and frequent percussionist for Dylan, Eric Clapton, Randy Newman, Steely Dan, and a hundred others.
Time magazine has said Himmelman “writes songs with the same urgency that compelled the Lost Generation to write novels. ” In “Sacrificial,” a central song on his recent album There Is No Calamity, Himmelman ponders questions like “How angry is too angry? How sweet is just too sweet? / How do you call out for love when love feels like defeat?” Later, he defines his song title “Ropes or Wings” as being among “the deepest choices of the human mind. . . . With ropes we stay tied up, and with wings we can make this troubled world aligned.” His all-too-prescient “245th Peace Song” states, “the anger in people’s hearts needs to be cooled” before noting: “but you’ve got to be careful what you cool it with.” Himmelman teamed with producer Steve Berlin of Los Lobos for the album, released in 2017.