Scotland's National Music Prize Opens Album Submissions for £20k Prize

  • The SAY Award will return to Stirling this October
  • Submit eligible albums & tickets on sale via 
  • #SAYaward

Scottish Album of the Year Award 2024

​​​​​​​Scotland’s national music prize, The Scottish Album of the Year (SAY) Award, has launched for 2024, inviting artists, music fans and labels to submit eligible albums and be in the running for the prestigious prize. Returning to Stirling’s Albert Halls for the third year running, The SAY Award will celebrate the cultural impact and contribution of outstanding Scottish albums, with the winning record awarded a £20,000 prize and the coveted title of Scottish Album of the Year. 

Submit eligible albums for free via - submissions close midnight Wednesday 31 July 2024. 

The SAY Award Ceremony will return to Stirling’s iconic Albert Halls for the third year in a row, taking place on Thursday 24th October. 2023’s Ceremony saw history made as Young Fathers became the first artist to win The SAY Award for the third time, with the band recently returning to the city to headline their own festival in Stirling City Park at the end of July. Early-bird tickets for 2024’s SAY Award Ceremony are on sale now via 

In The SAY Award’s thirteenth year, artists, music fans, labels and more will be encouraged to submit eligible albums for free, to be in with the chance of winning. To be considered for 2024’s award, eligible albums must have been released between 1st June 2023 and 31st May 2024. To submit albums, plus view eligibility criteria and guidelines for 2024’s award, visit

Previous SAY Award winners include Young Fathers, Kathryn Joseph, Mogwai, Anna Meredith and more, with the past twelve months seeing releases from the likes of The Snuts, Teenage Fanclub, Becky Sikasa, Erland Cooper, Rachel Sermanni and The Jesus and Mary Chain, all of which could be submitted for consideration. Since its inception in 2012, The SAY Award has distributed over £350,000 in prize money to Scottish artists, recognising outstanding albums  across multiple genres. 

The SAY Award winner will receive a £20,000 prize and the prestigious title of Scottish Album of the Year, whilst nine runners up will each receive £1,000, as well as bespoke prizes created by a Stirling-based artist through The SAY Award Design Commission. Accompanying the main album of the year prize, the Modern Scottish Classic Award will recognise an iconic album that still inspires Scottish musicians today, and the Sound of Young Scotland Award – supported by Help Musicians, the Scottish Government’s Youth Music Initiative through Creative Scotland and Youth Music – will recognise a young and emerging artist, providing them with a funding package to support the creation of their debut album. 2023’s Modern Scottish Classic winner was Paolo Nutini’s ‘These Streets’, with Edinburgh-based duo No Windows collecting The Sound of Young Scotland Award. 

On Thursday 24 October, Scotland’s national music prize will once again see the country’s music industry unite at Stirling’s Albert Halls to celebrate the strength and diversity of Scotland’s musical talent. The SAY Award will form part of a year-long celebration of Stirling’s 900th anniversary, as the city becomes a hub of live events including the recent Stirling Summer Sessions, a special Twin Atlantic show, the inaugural Interesting Things music festival, performances from former SAY nominee Becky Sikasa, as well as performances by artists such as Horse, Turin Brakes, Hue and Cry, Huey Morgan from the Fun Lovin’ Criminals and much much more. For more info, visit  

The 900th anniversary celebrations also include a series of SAY Award Fringe events at The Tolbooth in the heart of Stirling. The shows will feature special live performances from previous SAY Award nominees who will play the records that saw them nominated for Scotland’s national music prize in full. Stay tuned for the line-up and visit for more information on Stirling 900. 

Robert Kilpatrick, CEO and Creative Director of the Scottish Music Industry Association (SMIA) said, “Scottish music is the soundtrack and stories of our lives. As we commence our thirteenth year delivering Scotland’s national music prize, the SMIA remains firmly committed to celebrating and championing music as an invaluable expression of our cultural identity; amplifying its diverse narratives to enrich society and drive audience development.

“The last few years have been difficult for the cultural sector, with soaring costs, strains on public funding and economic pressures across the board. Thanks to the support of our partners, today marks the start of a 4-month celebration of Scotland’s word-class recorded output. We look forward to immersing ourselves in this year’s eligible albums, and to returning to Stirling’s Albert Halls on Thursday 24 October for 2024’s SAY Award Ceremony. It will undoubtedly be another incredible night to remember, and I hope many of you can join us.”
Stirling Council Leader, Cllr Chris Kane said, “We’re incredibly proud to be welcoming The Scottish Album of the Year Award ceremony back to Stirling for the third consecutive year as the city marks its 900th anniversary.

“Following the success of the events held in 2022 and 2023 at our beautiful Albert Halls venue, we can’t wait to welcome back artists and visitors to celebrate the very best in new Scottish music and showcase everything Stirling has to offer. 

“Fresh from the success of Stirling Summer Sessions festival and Twin Atlantic selling out the Tolbooth Stirling in a matter of minutes last week, Stirling continues to show it’s a top-class events location with a vibrant music and creative scene in its 900th year.”

The SAY Award Design Commission has also opened expressions of interest - meaning artists and makers based in the Stirling Council area can register interest to create bespoke prizes for this year’s award winners and nominees; highlighting the enduring links between music, art and design in Scotland. The commissioned artist will be tasked with designing awards with sustainability at the forefront. 

Once all eligible albums have been collated for The SAY Award, 100 impartial ‘Nominators’, chosen from sectors including journalism, music retail and music venues across Scotland, nominate and rank their five favourite albums in order of preference. The SMIA assigns a score to each title in a Nominator’s Top 5, before announcing the 20 highest scoring albums as The SAY Award Longlist.

The Longlist will then be whittled down to a Shortlist of 10 albums, one of which will be chosen by music fans via a 72-hour online public vote. The remaining nine albums will be chosen by The SAY Award judging panel, before judges then choose the winning album, exclusively announced at 2024’s ceremony. 

The SAY Award is a Scottish Music Industry Association (SMIA) production. The SAY Award 2024 is delivered in partnership with Creative Scotland, Stirling Council, Stirling Alive with Culture, Seabass Vinyl, Ticketmaster, Help Musicians, HMV, FOPP, PPL, the Scottish Government’s Youth Music Initiative, Youth Music and Music Declares Emergency. 
The SAY Award’s charity partner is once again Scotland’s national children’s and young people’s mental health charity, Tiny Changes, set up in memory of Frightened Rabbit frontman Scott Hutchison to help young minds feel better. 

Now in its thirteenth year, previous winners of The SAY Award include; Young Fathers ‘Heavy Heavy’ (2023), Fergus McCreadie ‘Forest Floor’ (2022), Mogwai ‘As The Love Continues' (2021), Nova ‘Re-Up’ (2020), Auntie Flo ‘Radio Highlife’ (2019), Young Fathers ‘Cocoa Sugar’ (2018), Sacred Paws ‘Strike A Match’ (2017), Anna Meredith ‘Varmints’ (2016), Kathryn Joseph ‘Bones You Have Thrown Me And Blood I’ve Spilled’ (2015), Young Fathers ‘Tape Two’ (2014), RM Hubbert ‘Thirteen Lost & Found’ (2013) and the inaugural winner Bill Wells and Aidan Moffat ‘Everything’s Getting Older’ (2012).

Early-bird SAY Award Ceremony tickets on sale now via £18 + booking fee.

Don’t miss The SAY Award 2024 news - follow the award on social media across Twitter @SAYaward, Instagram @sayaward, Facebook @SAYaward and TikTok @thesayaward.


Scottish Music Industry Association

The Scottish Music Industry Association (SMIA) is a not-for-profit trade body and membership organisation which exists to strengthen, empower and unite Scotland’s music industry.

As a Creative Scotland Regularly Funded Organisation (RFO), we work to create and nurture an inclusive membership community which reflects the full spectrum of Scotland’s music industry. We give voice to our membership when speaking to Government, Parliament and development organisations, and we both produce and support projects and programmes that stimulate sustainability, domestic and international growth, development and innovation in Scotland’s music sector. Our services, projects and events are designed to strengthen and increase the value of Scotland’s music industry on the world stage: economically, socially and culturally.

For further information on the SMIA and its services, projects and events please visit

Keep up to date with the SMIA across our social media channels:

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Creative Scotland

Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland, distributing funding provided by the Scottish Government and The National Lottery. Further information at Follow us on XFacebook and Instagram. Learn more about the value of art and creativity in Scotland and join in at

Youth Music Initiative

The Scottish Government’s Youth Music Initiative (YMI), administered by Creative Scotland, creates access to high quality music making opportunities, enables young people to achieve their potential in or through music and supports the development of the sector for the benefit of young people. In 2021/22, more than 362,483 children and young people from Scotland’s 32 local authority areas were given free access to music-making experiences. To find out more about the YMI programme please visit

Stirling Council

Stirling Council serves more than 94,000 residents and a thriving business community in an  area that stretches from the scenic Campsie Fells to the vibrant city of Stirling and the outstanding natural landscape of the Trossachs. Stirling is steeped in history and will celebrate its 900th anniversary as a Royal Burgh in 2024. The nation’s most cherished landmarks are found here, including the National Wallace Monument and Stirling Castle, making Stirling alive with history and culture while a growing modern artistic scene nurtures new creative talent.

Equidistant to both Glasgow and Edinburgh, Stirling is ideally situated for business as well as a place to live, work, study and visit. Stirling has a strong reputation as a business and investment location and hosts some of the UK and Europe’s most innovative science and technology businesses, including Codebase, the UK’s largest Technology Incubator.

Stirling Council’s vision is to be a responsive local authority that works positively with employees, partners and communities to deliver on key priorities and ensure the best possible outcomes for everyone who lives in the Stirling area.

Seabss Vinyl

Seabass Vinyl is Scotland’s first vinyl pressing plant. We are an independent, family-owned business, manufacturing records from our factory in East Lothian, with an emphasis on quality and sustainability. We offer fair prices, short production runs and optimised production lead times. Our ambition is to become a valuable partner to the Scottish music industry and our local community.


Ticketmaster is the world’s largest ticket marketplace and the global market leader in live event ticketing products and services. Through official partnerships with thousands of venues, artists, sports teams, festivals, performing arts centres and theatres, Ticketmaster processes 550 million tickets per year across 35+ different countries. 

Help Musicians

Help Musicians is a charity that loves music and for over 100 years has been working hard to make a meaningful difference to the lives of musicians across the UK. It offers a broad range of help to support music creators in times of crisis and opportunity - ensuring musicians across the UK can achieve their creative potential and sustain a career in music.


HMV, for the fans since 1921. A leading specialist retailer of music, film, pop culture and technology products, with over 100 stores around the UK & Ireland offering a wide selection of new release and catalogue titles



Founded in 1934,  PPL is the UK music industry’s collective management organisation (CMO) for performers and recording rightsholders. We license recorded music in the UK when it is played in public (shops, bars, nightclubs, offices etc.) or broadcast (BBC, commercial radio, commercial TV etc.) and ensure that revenue flows back to our members. These include both independent and major record companies, together with performers ranging from emerging grassroots artists through to established session musicians and globally renowned artists. PPL’s public performance licensing is carried out on PPL’s behalf by PPL PRS Ltd, the joint venture between PPL and PRS for Music. 

We also collect performance rights internationally when music is played overseas in public and used on TV, radio and some online streaming services, as well as for private copying. International royalties are an increasingly important revenue stream for performers and recording rightsholders. In 2022, in total, we collected  £272.6 million across all of our revenue streams, while also distributing money to more than 165,000 performers and recording rightsholders. 

Youth Music

Youth Music is the UK’s leading young people’s music charity.

We believe that every young person should have the chance to make, learn and earn in music.

Yet our research shows that many can’t because of who they are, where they’re from or what they’re going through.

We leverage our insights, investment, and influence to build a national grassroots infrastructure that ensures the future of music is more inclusive, diverse, equitable and accessible.

Youth Music is funded thanks to the National Lottery via Arts Council England, players of People's Postcode Lottery and support from partners, fundraisers and donors.

Music Declares Emergency

Formed by a group of UK based artists and music industry professionals in London in 2019, Music Declares Emergency has now expanded to four continents and works with over 8000 declarers from all sectors and areas of the global music industry, placing music at the heart of conversation and action in relation to the climate emergency.

Our work engages fans with the facts, develops messaging that cuts through the noise, works with artists to use their platforms, and encourages new business practice. 

Our ‘No Music On A Dead Planet’ message has been seen by millions and frames a community of music lovers dedicated to working with us and the movement to campaign for systemic change to deliver real action on climate. 

Tiny Changes

Tiny Changes is Scotland’s first national young people’s mental health charity. We run projects with young leaders that help young minds feel better. The charity was set up in memory of artist and Frightened Rabbit frontman Scott Hutchison. Through his music and art Scott made tiny changes that had a big impact on people from all walks of life.

We believe that Scotland’s young people deserve great mental health, and we believe in their insight and innovation to make this possible. We exist to nurture the talent of young people to find solutions that work for them. 

In four years, we’ve funded 69 innovative mental health ideas -  from bubble therapy with refugees to peer-led crisis prevention cafe and d/Deaf youth wellbeing resources - supporting over 4,000 children and young people, with many of them leading change in their communities.

Over the next three years we'll support young people to co-design and lead Tiny Changes projects, while learning as much as we can about our impact. Our two goals are to invest £1 million in young people’s mental health and to support 10,000 children and young people by the end of 2026.

Media contact


Colette Baptie | [email protected] | 07807 887 527