Event Details

Jack Blackman + Steve Pledger
with Steve Pledge
Sun March 20, 2022 6:00 pm GMT (Doors: 5:00 pm )
The Engine Room , The Old Maltings Building, North Shields
Ages 18 and Up

Jack Blackman has been making waves in the UK blues scene for quite some time now, and he is fast developing into one of the country’s finest exports of acoustic roots. Jack fuses a folk sensibility to summon the ghosts of blues long gone and if there is one guy qualified to give an opinion on contemporary roots music it's the BBC's Bob Harris who describes the guitar playing of Jack Blackman as 'exceptional'. Another respected voice worth paying attention to is acclaimed folk musician Martin Simpson - nominated 23 times for a BBC Radio 2 Folk Award, including nine times consecutively as Artist of The Year, Martin said of Jack ‘At last! A brilliant young guitarist coming through'. Jack has not only toured the length and breadth of the UK, he has also been to the home of the blues - the Mississippi Delta where he jammed with the late-great Tony Joe White. Perhaps the TJW influence rubbed off on him - Acoustic Magazine described Jack as sounding 'older and more careworn than his tender years should allow.'

Steve Pledger's musical influences are many, varied and not always obvious. They include - in no particular order - Graham Parker, Cat Stevens, Rush, Sam Cooke, Van Morrison, Don McLean, Elvis (both of them) and Bruce Springsteen. In 2016 Steve released his third album, 'Somewhere Between' which several reviewers described as his finest work to date. 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 song writing.' It was FATEA's Album Of The Year and Folkwords Album Of The Year by a Male Artist. In 2019 Steve released a live album, 'Alone In The Dark', which Roots & Fusion included in their 25 Essential Albums of the Year. Steve released three home-recorded tracks in 2020 - 'Prayer Of The Self-Employed', 'Reseda' and 'The Baptist's Father'. The latter,  a piano-backed, spoken-word version of a previously unreleased song which he had been playing live for around 18 months. In January 2021, this recording was awarded the FATEA Track of the Year.

Jack Blackman
Steve Pledge