West Country folk star Steve Knightley admits he will be stepping out of his comfort zone when he brings his 2018 solo tour Songs and Stories to this year’s St Ives September Festival.

As one half of multi-award-winning Show of Hands, Steve has shared in five sell-out nights at London’s Royal Albert Hall but says he has been “more nervous” about his 2018 project than anything he has done before.

Steve has adopted a very different format, forsaking the stage for a more intimate in-the-round show as he invites his audience on a musical journey, charting the winding roads of his career as he showcases a set list peppered with gems like Cousin Jack, AIG and Country Life.

He said: “Over the last five years people have come up requesting the stories as much as the songs, so I thought why not do a tour which alters the balance - less music and more stories?

“When you’re telling stories you have no way of knowing in advance how people will react. You are out of your comfort zone more than on any tour I have ever done. I have been more nervous yet more excited about the reaction.

“But this is me - there is no artifice about the person on stage. It’s an insight into my world really.”

In a rare glimpse into his personal playlist, Steve pays tribute to some of his influences, from Bob Dylan to Radiohead, Martin Carthy to David Bowie and Bruce Springsteen to Jethro Tull.

Along with Show of Hands partner Phil Beer, he became a patron of the festival a few years ago.

This year he is to appear at the St Ives Guildhall on Wednesday September 19.