Born in Cambridge, England on 21st November 1971, Steve grew up in the nearby market town of St Neots. From a very early age, one constant in his life has been music; a love for it, a need to express himself through it and - in more recent years - the opportunity to share his own songs with a growing, wider audience.
His musical influences are many, varied and not always obvious. They include - in no particular order - Graham Parker, Cat Stevens/Yusuf Islam, Rush, Sam Cooke, Martyn Joseph, Van Morrison, Don McLean, Elvis (both of them) and Bruce Springsteen. Add to this a liking for most musical styles - when executed well - and it would be fair to say that he has a wide spectrum of influences informing his own distinct style and approach.
Steve’s debut album, ‘14 Good Intentions’, was released on 9th July 2012 and is available to order from the shop. Featuring 16 songs, (there are 2 bonus tracks!) the album shifts between fragile reflections on love & loss to blistering protest & social commentary… & more besides. The emphasis is very much on the spirit of the performance of the songs and as such, the album goes a long way towards capturing the impact of a live gig.
The follow up to ‘14 Good Intentions’ was released on 2nd April 2015. ‘Striking Matches In The Wind’ features 12 songs, a performance of the title track was captured on video at Downend Folk Club and can be viewed here. The album features a handful of other fantastic musicians who compliment the songs beautifully and it was launched at a special concert in Dunster, Somerset on 14th March 2015. In the run-up to its release - as well as afterwards - the album received a great deal of airplay from local and national radio stations, and some incredible reviews, a selection of which can be read here by FATEA, She Dances in the Mind and FolkWords. ‘Striking Matches…’ is available to order from the shop now.
As well as performing his own highly regarded solo shows, Steve has also had many opportunities of late to work with and open for artists such as Phillip Henry & Hannah Martin, Martyn Joseph, Luke Jackson, Willy Porter and others, and particularly with award-winning, rising Folk star, Ange Hardy. Steve took part in the hugely successful launch concert for Ange’s 2014 release ‘The Lament of the Black Sheep’ in September 2014 (available to view in full here) and their collaboration continued in October and November when they took to the road on their joint ‘Just Passing Through’ tour of the South West of England. The response to the shows was extraordinary and the artistic relationship continued with Steve appearing on Ange's following two albums and a vocal appearance by Ange on ‘Striking Matches…’ on Steve’s song ‘There We Are’.
On the 4th November 2016 Steve launched his third album, 'Somewhere Between', at a very special sold-out event in the stunning Main Hall at Dunster Castle in Somerset. Along with much airplay, the album has received a remarkable response with many reviewers and listeners alike calling it Steve's finest work to date. Neil King of FATEA Magazine called it "Steve's tour-de-force. An album that casts Steve as a protest singer, up there with the likes of Billy Bragg, Phil Ochs and Ewan MacColl." and fRoots Magazine called it "An object lesson in the craft of contemporary songwriting.". It went on to win both the coveted FATEA Album Of The Year Award (see all winners/nominees here) and Folkwords' Album Of The Year by a Male Artist. (View award winners here.) It has also received other nominations and appeared on a number of radio shows' Best of 2016 lists. You can listen to a sampler of the album here and purchase the CD or download here. Reviews of the launch concert can be read online at Folking.com and FATEA.
More recently he opened for the legendary Billy Bragg to great acclaim at a special event in Durham in July 2018. His recent (as yet, unrecorded) material has been widely considered as being amongst his best yet and his solo shows continue to receive much praise. On his 2018 tour of Scotland, The Nettle declared that "Steve Pledger's much could make a rock cry. And make it vote probably.". He returns for his fourth tour of Scotland in as many years in September 2019. (See the latest listings on the Events page.)
In February 2019, Steve launched On Trust Events, his lve music initiative to make help make gigs more affordable and accessible to people who may otherwise be prevented from attending gigs due to financial difficulty. You can find out more about this on the OT website. (OT is also on Facebook and Twitter.)
The news page on this site - and particularly Steve’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram feeds - offer the ideal way to keep up to date with the latest news and developments with Steve so do look out for those. You can also sign up to Steve’s mailing list by dropping him a line via the contact page with your email address.
If you get the chance to pop along to a gig, he would love to meet you and sincerely hopes that whether at a gig, on the web or via a CD/download you will find something in these songs to take away and use for the good.