"Amazing song!" Jennifer Simpson, CBS Radio
"A song that opened my mind and my heart bigger for the world." D Price, Billboard Magazine
"Steve Kercher's voice skips through with ease and finesse. Even more impressive are his actual songs." Performer Magazine
"If the demand for autographs was any indication, Steve Kercher and his band made a lot of friends that night." Gloucester Daily Times
John Lennon Songwriting Contest Finalist.
“I’ve always wanted my music to have a positive effect on people and be a part of the greater good.” That sentiment is clearly reflected in Steve Kercher’s music, from upbeat progressive Pop-Rock anthems to Pop ballads, to high energy Jazz-Rock instrumentals.
Kercher's most recent single song release, I Need Ammunition Not a Ride (A Song for Ukraine), continues the tradition. Inspired by the words of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy following the invasion of Ukraine by Russian forces, Kercher wrote the song in a day, starting while driving to pick up his daughter from school. “I couldn't get the phrase out of my mind. It was courageous and poetic at the same time.” On the drive home, the main idea and a few lyrical lines and melody developed. “When I got home I wrote down what I had so far in a journal.”
Tired from the day, Kercher laid down to take a 15-minute nap. Forty-five minutes later he woke up and finished the song using his acoustic guitar to work out the chord progressions. “That night I started laying down the basic recorded tracks. The next day I connected with Andres Mayo, a producer who I worked with the year before on a demo. We worked on the mix and master over the course of about five days.”
Andres Mayo is a two-time Grammy Award-winning producer and engineer. He also served as the President of the AES (Audio Engineering Society), and, according to his bio on a blog by the audio company Sennheiser, pioneered the art of mastering since 1992.
I Need Ammunition Not a Ride (A Song for Ukraine) is scheduled for release on April 20, 2022, on Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, and other streaming services. Proceeds from the song will benefit humanitarian efforts in Ukraine.
Kercher began studying piano and drums in elementary school, and from as far back as he can remember, always enjoyed singing. He played guitar and bass early on as well, and then semi-professionally in his band, Pegasus, that he formed in middle school with friends from his neighborhood in Clifton Park, NY. The band played mostly cover songs at school events and parties.
Kercher moved with his family to the North Shore Boston area, and while in college - including four years at the Berklee College of Music where he studied voice performance and songwriting, and later Classical guitar - he performed professionally as a solo artist, and formed the Steve Kercher Group (now Steve Kercher Band) with other professional musicians in the area. The band performed at local fairs, schools, and coffee houses, and opened for the still touring, legendary Rock band, KANSAS, at the Fall River Celebrates America festival. Around that same time, the Steve Kercher Group recorded a full-length album of Kercher's original songs and toured the country of Turkey twice.
It was in Turkey during the summer of 2006, while Israeli forces occupied Lebanon, that the tour brought the band to Antakya, just 20 miles north of the Syrian border. “It was a tense time in that area.” Kercher recalls. “The Turks were very sympathetic to the people of Lebanon and very critical of Israel and America.” But the band experienced a different sentiment from their audiences. “They really embraced us. I think the fact that we were musicians performing concerts in their country softened their hearts toward us.”
Many of the songs and anecdotes were about peace and reconciliation. One moment that stands out for Kercher is when he introduced his song, “Kill Them With Kindness”, at a show in Selcuk, Turkey. “I told the story behind the song of a time when I was bullied in high school. Instead of lashing out and seeking revenge I gave the kid two boxes of M&Ms as a gift. He never bothered me again and actually began to defend me. After telling that story the audience erupted into cheers and applause and we hadn’t even played a note of the song yet.”
In 2007 Kercher recorded the single, The Friend of Africa, produced by Marty Walsh, former guitarist for Supertramp. The recording features The African Children's Choir, legendary bassist, Abraham Laboriel, and drummer JR Robinson (Micheal Jackson, Quincy Jones). The song, with music written by Kercher and lyrics by the biographer, Kevin Belmonte, celebrates the life of William Wilberforce, a British Member of Parliament who, along with his colleagues, successfully ended the slave trade in Great Britain in 1807. The CD version includes the radio mix, and two long-play mixes featuring extended jams by Laboriel and Robinson.
In April of 2017, Kercher released the album, Maiden Voyage. The album is a rearrangement and remastering of earlier works; familiar to some, but very new to most. The recording features performances by critically acclaimed fiddle and mandolin player, Jake Armerding.