A "gifted acoustic finger-style guitar player" (Dirty Linen), Peter Janson brings world-class acoustic guitar music to records and the concert stage with fresh contemporary arrangements of new and traditional tunes from England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Brittany, and North America, as well as Celtic inspired compositions. Reminiscent of American folk guitar, Celtic guitar, and American roots music, his original and compelling contemporary style is filled with artistry, superb technical mastery, and heartfelt passion: weaving songs about Celtic kings, lost love and sad dogs, memory, life, and the heart.
Born in Cambridge Massachusetts, USA, Peter Janson began playing guitar at age 7 and started composing as a young teen. His early influences were eclectic - from Django Reinhardt, Andres’ Segovia, Chet Atkins, Doc Watson, Les Paul, and Grant Green, to Steve Reich, Arvo Part, Brian Eno, and more – and remain so to this day. While attaining his Master of Guitar Performance degree at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston he focused on early music for stringed instruments, jazz, Indian classical and contemporary classical composition. It was at this time that becoming his own artist, through intense study of a variety of music from his interests as well as his heritages, ignited in his soul and his style of guitar music that "falls in the space between the personal and the universal" began to reveal itself: his passion for folk, world, and traditional music, especially Celtic, was formed and since that time his performances have mostly been as a soloist playing steel-string guitar and, more recently, singing.
As an experienced independent performer having played across the US and Canada, from the legendary Freight & Salvage in Berkley CA, to the guitar shows at the Montreal International Jazz Festival, to the iconic Club Passim in Boston MA, he’s had the privilege of performing with a variety of acoustic artists including American Guitar Masters tours with Larry Pattis and Steve Davison, Artistry of the Guitar tours with Ken Bonfield, String Songs concerts with luminaries Tim Farrell and Michael Manring, Friends concerts with Steve Hunt, Henrik Bridger and Bertram Lehmann, and has shared stages and co-bills with Ed Gerhard, Alex DeGrassi, Dakota Dave Hull, Chris Proctor, Jamie Bonk, singer-songwriters Brooks Williams, Shane Jackman, Greg Greenway, and Tim Harrison, Ugandan artist Kinobe and Celtic artists Aine Minogue, Aoife Clancy, Robbie O'Connell, and others.
His blending of technical virtuosity with heartfelt spirit has earned him critical acclaim such as “perfection ... highly creative,” “a true artist’s soul,” and “absolutely one of the best heartfelt acoustic players today” from reviewers and industry peers alike, and there’s no doubt he has bridged a gap bringing together the every-day music fan with die-hard guitar fans. Peter won an NAR Lifestyle Music Award for Best Contemporary Instrumental Album for his Beautiful Day CD, and Album of the Year and Best Instrumental Album Acoustic awards for his co-writing and performing on Jamie Bonk’s My World CD. He has composed and recorded music on 14 national and international CDs including six CDs under his name, music for video games, and music that has been featured on a variety of regional and national documentaries including CBS News' "Living in the Shadows: Religion's response to human trafficking." All of his CDs have been featured on PBS, commercial and college radio, syndicated radio, Sirius/XM, Music Choice TV, Pandora, Spotify, and in-flight programming resulting in over 1/2 million BMI verified broadcasts.
His solo recordings include Firelight Moonlight, Winter Gifts, Across the Bridge, Sometimes From Here, Compass Rose, and his newly released CD titled A Long Road: Tunes From Celtic Lands.
"Acoustic Guitarists Astonish!" ~ The Orion, Chico CA.
* NAR Lifestyle Music Award winner for Best Contemporary Instrumental Album 2006, BEAUTIFUL DAY
* NAR Lifestyle Music Award nominee for Best Instrumental Album - Acoustic 2006, BEAUTIFUL DAY
* NAR Reviewer Pick Award winner for Best CD of 2006, BEAUTIFUL DAY
* NAR Lifestyle Music Award winner for Album of the Year 2004, JAMIE BONK - MY WORLD
* NAR Lifestyle Music Award winner for Best Instrumental Album - Acoustic 2004, JAMIE BONK - MY WORLD
* KTEP-FM (El Paso TX) Top 20 of the Year 2004, FIRELIGHT MOONLIGHT
* KTEP-FM (El Paso TX) Essential Audiosyncracy Collection Award winner 2003, SOMETIMES FROM HERE
* NAV Music Award finalist for Best New Age Album 2002, SOMETIMES FROM HERE
* KTEP-FM (El Paso TX) Top 20 of the Year 2001, SOMETIMES FROM HERE
* KSRC-FM (Tulsa OK) Top 20 of the Year 2001, SOMETIMES FROM HERE
* NAV Music Award nominee for Best Acoustic Instrumental Album 2000, ACROSS THE BRIDGE
* KGOU-FM (Norman OK) Best of 2000 Award winner, ACROSS THE BRIDGE [+]