Media Release: Scottish Album of the Year Award returns for a second year

FOLLOWING  last year’s successful inauguration of The Scottish Album of the Year [SAY] Award, the Scottish Music Industry Association [SMIA] is delighted to announce that the prestigious arts prize is returning for a second year. The SAY Award will celebrate, promote and reward the most outstanding albums – of any genre – released by Scottish artists in 2012.

The winner will be chosen from a shortlist of ten albums at an award ceremony held in Glasgow’s Barrowland Ballroom on Thursday, 20th June. The winning album will once again receive a first prize of £20,000 with the nine other shortlisted titles picking up £1,000 each. All ten shortlisted albums will also receive an exclusive artwork created by the winner of this year’s SAY Art Commission: a prize fund of £20,000 courtesy of Creative Scotland and contested by eight outstanding graduates from Scotland’s four principal art schools.

Drawing upon the nominations of 100 individuals and organisations from across the arts and Scotland’s music industry, the 20 highest scoring albums will form The SAY Award longlist to be announced on Thursday 25th April. This year’s nominators included journalists, bloggers, radio presenters and producers, promoters, retailers, venues, club DJs, festival organisers, academics and music fans from elsewhere in the arts. Over 270 albums were considered eligible with more than 135 albums picking up at least one vote from a nominator.

Following a four-week promotion when the public will have the chance to stream every one of the 20 longlisted titles, there will be a 24-hour voting window on Monday 27th May when the public can choose their favourite from the list. The album with the most public votes will secure an automatic place on The SAY Award shortlist of ten, with the other nine titles being chosen by an independent panel of judges.

Chaired once again by Glasgow University academic, John Williamson, the SAY judging panel this year includes Douglas Anderson (author/broadcaster/writer), Christopher Brookmyre (author), Stewart Cruickshank (radio producer), Tom Doyle (author/journalist), Douglas Gordon (Turner Prize Winner 1996), Kate Molleson (journalist), Joe Muggs (journalist/A&R), Jude Rogers (journalist), Tjinder Singh (singer/songwriter/producer for Cornershop and founder of Ample Play Records), Rebecca Vasmant (DJ/producer) and Sue Wilson (journalist).

The SMIA is enormously grateful for the continued support of Creative Scotland and welcomes Dewar’s, music licensing organisation PPL and Clyde Gateway as valued creative partners in the award’s development. The SMIA is also delighted to announce a joint media partnership with the Sunday Herald and The Scotsman to promote the award.

Stewart Henderson, chair, SMIA: “In celebrating the album, The SAY Award recognises a format that continues to affect, inspire and excite us like no other. We should all feel justifiably proud of Scotland’s capacity to produce extraordinary albums and, with The SAY Award, we can bring exceptional albums to the public’s attention, value the importance of music and, best of all, bask in the warm glow of our own magnificence for six weeks: never a bad thing.”

Caroline Parkinson, director of Creative Development: “The SAY Award is a fantastic way of supporting and raising the profile of Scotland’s talented musicians, of which there are many. We are delighted to support the awards and congratulate all the nominees!”

Stephen Marshall, global marketing manager, Dewar’s: “I collect records and I love working in whisky. Why not combine them? The SAY Award is playing a pivotal role in recognising a real surge of new talent in Scotland and it’s important for us at Dewar’s that we support the things we love.”

Christine Geissmar, operations director, PPL: “PPL is thrilled to be a partner of The SAY Award. Scotland has a very vibrant music culture that throws up a huge array of albums from many different types of performer, across many different musical genres. The SAY Award helps to promote this wonderful diversity and we’re proud to play a part on behalf of PPL’s many Scottish members. In addition, we also want to support many of our Scottish customers who use music as part of their business and encourage everyone to vote for their favourite Scottish album.”

Ian Manson, chief executive, Clyde Gateway: “The East End of Glasgow is an area long associated with great music and has of course been home to one of Scotland’s most internationally renowned record labels for many years. It is entirely fitting that the East End is now the new home for The SAY Award and I’m delighted such an important and eagerly-awaited event will help to highlight the very positive and dynamic ways that the area is changing.”

The SAY Art Commission celebrates the enduring links between music and the visual arts. Eight graduates, two from each of Scotland’s four principal art schools (Duncan of Jordanstone in Dundee; Edinburgh College of Art; Glasgow School of Art and Gray’s in Aberdeen), receive £1,000 each and contribute two pieces of work to a group show held in the Intermedia Gallery of Glasgow’s Centre for Contemporary Arts (CCA). The winning artist, chosen by an independent panel of judges, will receive £12,000 and a commission to create ten exclusive artworks as prizes for this year’s SAY Award shortlisted finalists. The winner of The SAY Art Commission will be announced live, in tandem with The SAY Award Shortlist, at an invitation-event in the CCA on Thursday 30th May.


For further information, interviews and photographs:

PRINT | BROADCAST MEDIA: contact Wendy Niblock | 07961 814834 |

ONLINE | SOCIAL MEDIA: contact Stacey Walton | 07855 181780 |


1. Key dates for your diary

Thursday 25th April:

The SAY Award longlist announcement.

Monday 29th April – Sunday 26th May:

Longlist promotion via SAY Award app and website.

Monday 27th May: 

24-hour public vote.

Thursday 30th May (Drinks reception at the CCA):

The SAY Award shortlist announcement

The SAY art commission winner announcement

Opening of art commission group show

Thursday 20th June:

Scottish Album of the Year award ceremony – Barrowland Ballroom.

2. Award format and eligibility guidelines:

3. Judges biographies:

4. To see the list of 100 mnominators visit:

5. Producer and partner information, visit:

Scottish Music Industry Association:

Creative Scotland:

Dewar’s Scotch Whisky:


Clyde Gateway:

Sunday Herald:

The Scotsman: 

Follow us on Twitter: #sayaward

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