12 powerful new songs recorded with musical greats: Jim Keltner, Lee Sklar, & guitarist David Steele. Help us float it into the world. Read more
This project was successfully funded on November 20, 2013.
About this project
“Peter Himmelman's gift lies in refracting 21st-century confusion and bewilderment through ephemeral swirls of imagery.” - Uncut Magazine
A Message From Peter
May - 2013. There's a new record bubbling up in my head. I've already written about thirty songs, several of which I love and consider true contenders. What I usually do is write way more then I'll need. I'll probably get to about thirty of 'em before my mind and body says, 'no more!' Then I'll go back (and with the help of friends - and sometimes just a dartboard) pick the ones that feel right together. No science, just a sense.
(The music cues are all very rough mixes at this point.)
I feel like this record is not going to be another one of my "dark" works. I've been exploring themes of unease and the portent of chaos for a while now and I've had it. My forcing frame, the structure I've put on myself this go round, is to do something that reflects the way I typically feel, which is quite hopeful. I'm not saying this is going to be a Disney record, but instead of the songs being focused on life's struggles, I'm going to try and depict a sense of wonder about life's joys and possibilities. That's what I'm thinking today at any rate.
“Himmelman probes the depths of all the passions, from anguish to lust, to depths few rockers can even imagine.” - San Francisco Chronicle
Early August - 2013. It's been exactly one week since I found myself in the studio with some of popular music's most legendary players. My friend Sheldon Gomberg, the great bass player and masterful producer called me a couple weeks ago and suggested I come by his place and record. "I think I can get Lee Sklar and I know you're friendly with Jim (Keltner) why don't you call him and see what he thinks?"
When Jim and Lee get into a room, it's always pure magic and for those who don't know who either of those guys are, I suggest you do some homework and Google them. Between the two of them they've played with: Lightning Hopkins, James Taylor, Bob Dylan, Jackson Brown, Keith Richards, Carol King, George Harrison, John Lennon... truly, the list goes on endlessly.
What makes them great isn't just their chops. Technical facility like they have is somewhat ubiquitous in LA. What makes them special is their abundant and generous humanity. For them playing music is like prayer. It's the way they express their incredulity and delight about being a spirit in a physical world; the irony of that, the pain of that. Consequently, they are listeners, attuned to every nuance of what's happening in the room. In order to evince the right musical parts (which are merely a manifestation of pure spirit after all) one must first be able to hear. Then, and only then do these men dip into their deep and I mean deep, musical wellsprings. That, in my opinion is where the greatness lies.
As it turned out, I called JIm, Sheldon called Lee and an insanely good guitarist named David Steele who's played with Steve Earle, Lucinda Williams and John Prine and on Monday we got in the studio and wound up with this beautiful collection of songs. Twelve of them in two and a half days! We tracked live, old school. A few days later, the wonderful keyboardist, Will Gramling came in and bathed several of the tunes in a sweep of honey-dripped Hammond organ. What you'll hear on The Boat That Carries Us is what went down in that short, potent period.
“Himmelman writes songs with the same emphatic edge and aesthetic urgency that impelled the Lost Generation to write novels.” – Time Magazine
The confidence I got from being in the room with these guys really shines on this recording. There's a relaxedness to the grooves, to my singing, and on the playing that feels warm and intensely old school. I feel like the songs on this album will be a regular part of my repertoire for years. Songs I can sink my teeth into in a live setting. And yes, I did stick to my original forcing frame, I made a record that abounds in hope. Expect some soul, some low-down funkiness and some things that sound like they'd fit right in a Baptist church or a Saturday night juke joint.
"Himmelman is one of rock's most wildly imaginative performers" - USA TODAY.
"the boat that carries us needs no sail
the boat that carries us needs no sail
an unseen hand moves us on
the darkest sky gives way to dawn
the boat that carries us needs no sail..."
The present moment is a mixed blessing for music-makers. There's never been a better time to create, record and disseminate our work. The miracle of pressing a button and sending master quality recordings to almost anyone on Earth is overwhelming.
On the other hand, no one's buying recorded music because nobody has to anymore, it's literally streaming everywhere. I want to continue making records (and I hope you want to continue listening to them) but I simply can't keep doing it when no one's paying for them. That's why after some deliberating, I've chosen to reach out to you on Kickstarter.
We've made this music for the sheer love of doing so. It's what gives us life and vitality and we hope that we can spread a little of that to you as well. So please join us on this journey. Your financial support is needed but so is your support of the songs themselves. If you have any feedback or suggestions let me know. I'm always reachable at email@example.com
Thanks in advance and be well,
SAMPLES OF PETER'S ARTWORK FOR PLEDGE #5
Risks and challenges
Making a record is like building a house. You have a plan and you follow it.
Never have I made a record that went exactly according to plan and never have I made one that veered totally off course. It's a process of knowing where you're headed and being open to navigational nudges along the way. Sometimes the process takes longer (or shorter) then planned.
Just letting you know.
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
Pledge $2 or more
Get a high resolution (wav or AIFF file) of the title track The Boat That Carries Us and the artwork on jpeg.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $10 or more
Receive a high resolution (aiff or wav) download of the EP edition (five songs) from the full record plus jpeg of the original album artwork. Also included is the Lee Sklar postcard with Lee's signature!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $10 or more
1 backer Limited (49 left of 50)
Hiimmelvaults 9 available exclusively here! Rarities, unreleased material, all sorts of cool stuff.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $20 or more
Receive a high resolution (aiff or wav and jpeg of the original album artwork) download of the full finished album. Also includes the Lee Sklar postcard!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $25 or more
33 backers Limited (17 left of 50)
For Sussman Lawrence Fans Only!
A signed, limited release of Peter's never before heard demo recordings of known and unknown Sussman Lawrence tracks from the early 80's on CD.
Early versions of: House On Fire, Cigarette, Fireman and more.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $30 or more
68 backers Limited (182 left of 250)
Special limited edition signed CD (for those of you still enamored of the technology) with lyrics and original artwork by Jim Hershleder and the Lee Sklar post card.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $40 or more
Receive a PDF of the Himmelman Family Cookbook for IPad (or to print out yourself.)
This limited edition cookbook is replete with amazing recipies from Peter and his wife, cooking anecdotes and photos of the dishes that have had guests raving for years. Included are such favorites as:
Spicy Moroccan Fish with preserved lemon-
Iraqi Tabyt (slow cooked chicken and rice) -
Shakshukah (traditional spicy Israeli egg dish)-
Traditional Chicken Soup-
Halibut with brown mushrooms, soy and cilantro-
Trinidadian Curried Chicken-
Simple amazing Homemade Pizza-
Soba Noodles and Shitake Mushrooms-
and many more.
Also included in this package is the full album on aiif or wav files plus jpeg of the original album artwork and the Lee Sklar postcard!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $45 or more
12 backers Limited (88 left of 100)
Your choice of one several original t-shirt designs:
M or L sizes only. See designs in STORE section of www.peterhimmelman.com plus full album and Lee Sklar postcard!Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $60 or more
45 backers Limited (5 left of 50)
Receive a beautiful, signed, hard-bound book of Peter's hand written lyrics. It'll include twenty or more of his timeless songs, chosen from recordings from This Father's Day, Skin, From Strength to Strength, Flown This Acid World etc - all the way to the present. The book also features original artwork and annotations on his songwriting process and the recording sessions. Includes all the previously mentioned rewards.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $80 or more
15 backers Limited (35 left of 50)
Receive a signed original artwork print from Peter on durable, framable canvas. Examples of Peter's work at: www.himmelmanart.com and here on this KS page.
Also included in this package is the full album on aiff or wav files plus jpeg of the original album artwork and the Lee Sklar postcard!Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $125 or more
31 backers Limited (219 left of 250)
Receive a signed, limited vinyl edition of the record plus everything listed in the categories above - including the signed artwork, post card, cookbook and full album on wav or aiff file!Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $150 or more
Complete Access to Peter's Catalogue!
Peter has over 30 recordings of original music, including rarities albums, unreleased material, and children's music. With this reward you have one month to select as many as these as you like and we will send you the digital files and jpegs of the covers. Select this and simply write to us at: firstname.lastname@example.org to receive the music
With this package you also receive everything listed in the above rewards!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $275 or more
3 backers Limited (12 left of 15)
An original sketch by Peter based on your favorite PH song. Imagine, Raina, Flown This Acid World, Impermanent Things or ...? In pen and ink! Includes all rewards in the categories below!Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $350 or more
6 backers All gone!
New Reward: (For Tortoise Lovers!)
Come spend a couple hours one afternoon in Peter's Southern California recording studio. Play some guitars, watch some work in progress. Maybe even see his famous turtle eating kale. Caveat: that's terrifically entertaining (for two minutes tops.) Basically hang out and shoot the breeze as creative projects take shape. Includes WAV or AIFF flies of The Boat That Carries Us and the Lee Sklar post card! Can take place in 2014 at a mutually convenient time.
Estimated delivery: Mar 2014Estimated delivery:
Pledge $500 or more
0 backers Limited (5 left of 5)
Half hour mini-concert via Skype of your favorite Peter Himmelman songs (TBD in advance) beamed directly into your bedroom - or kitchen - or living room. Make some popcorn, pour some beverages, and invite your Mom and your neighbors, then kickback and enjoy your private show.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $750 or more
0 backers Limited (4 left of 4)
Customize your Instrument!
Peter will draw on your guitar, tambourine, bass or drum head. Go to www.peterhimmelman.com STORE and scroll to the bottom for two gorgeous examples. Reward includes full recording on WAV or AIFF files, Himmelman Family cookbook, and the Lee Sklar post card!Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $1,000 or more
1 backer Limited (3 left of 4)
An hour and a half songwriting seminar with Peter (in person in the LA area) or via Skype - also includes everything listed above!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $1,000 or more
5 backers All gone!
Peter will write, perform and produce an original song for the person or organization of your choice. A great gift idea for weddings, birthdays, anniversaries! Also includes all the rewards listed above.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $2,500 or more
2 backers Limited (3 left of 5)
Two hour Big Muse www.bigmuse.com consultation with Peter in LA (in his studio) or via Skype.
Also includes everything listed above!Estimated delivery:
0 backers Limited (4 left of 4)
Peter will come to your home, office, or organization (in the continental US) and perform a solo concert for your friends and family - Spring 2014
Also includes everything listed above!Estimated delivery:
- (47 days)