On 2 September 2020 Steve Mac received the Ivor Novello Award for Songwriter of the Year 2019.
Presented since 1974 this Ivor Novello Award recognises a writer whose creativity has made an identifiable impact on the award year.
The following is an extract from The Ivors 2020 official Awards brochure.
The best songwriters go on hot streaks; those periods where everything they produce turns into composition gold. The very best songwriters will enjoy several of those during their careers.
But very few have been on the sort of run that Steve Mac has been on lately. The genial writer and producer has been making hits for 30 years, of course, but even his already stellar career has gone into overdrive in the last couple of years.
In 2019, the year for which he’s being honoured with this year’s Ivor Novello Award for Songwriter of the Year, he co-wrote many of the year’s defining hits.
Mabel’s rise to superstardom was powered by Don’t Call Me Up, the irresistible anthem penned by Mac with Mabel and Camille Purcell.
And then there was South Of The Border by Mac’s long-term collaborator Ed Sheeran, featuring Camila Cabello and Cardi B. For many the standout cut from Sheeran’s No.6 Collaborations Project No.1 album, it became the 62nd Top 5 UK single that Mac has worked on as either writer, producer or both. That’s 62 solid gold (and platinum and multi-platinum) smashes.
Add in hits for Marshmello, Westlife and Jax Jones; key album tracks with Tom Walker, James Morrison and Liam Payne; and wonderful soundtrack songs from Kelly Clarkson and Sigrid, and Mac’s 2019 starts to look even more remarkable. And that’s before you assess the continuing global impact of co-writes such as Anne-Marie’s 2002, Little Mix’s Woman Like Me, Jess Glynne’s Thursday and Marshmello/Bastille’s Happier. Or consider that, in 2017, he co-wrote Ed Sheeran’s Shape Of You; Spotify’s most-streamed song in history and a tune with global sales now over 43 million.
No wonder the awards have been flowing almost as steadily as his stream of hits, although you suspect this year’s Ivor Novello Award will take pride of place on his shelf.
But you can bet there will be no resting on his laurels. Because, as well as his unique talent for writing the right song for the right time, Steve Mac also has a phenomenal work ethic and the ambition to better even his incredible achievements.
Long may the hot streak continue.
words by Mark Sutherland
A host of artists who have worked with Steve offer their congratulations on his Ivor Novello Award
Shane Filan, Kian Egan, and Nicky Byrne from Westlife:
Mabel, Tom Walker and Simon Neil from Biffy Clyro: