The Scottish Album of the Year award has been opened up for nominations for 2024 with artists, music fans and labels invited to submit contenders for the prestigious prize.

The SAY Award ceremony will take place at Stirling’s Albert Halls for the third year in a row and celebrates the cultural impact and contribution of Scottish albums.

The winner receives a £20,000 prize and has been won by the likes of Young Fathers, Mogwai and others over recent years. The distinguished award involves everyone involved in music from fans, to artists to record labels as well as music journalists.

Young Fathers became the first artist to win the award on three occasions in 2023 when their ‘Heavy Heavy’ album was selected as Album of the Year, while Paolo Nutini was also celebrated at last year’s event with ‘These Streets’ being named a Modern Scottish Classic winner.

READ MORE: Scottish Album of the Year 2023: The 10 artists nominated

It’s the thirteenth year of the awards and to be considered for it, the album has to have been released between June 1 2023 and May 31 2024, with anyone able to submit eligible records via the SAY Awards website. Submissions for the award close on July 31.

As well as Young Fathers and Mogwai, Kathryn Joseph, Anna Meredith and Fergus McCreadie are among those who have claimed the top prize.

There’s plenty of options from Scottish artists over the last year that can be nominated too, including the likes of The Snuts, Teenage Fanclub, The Jesus and Mary Chain and Rachel Sermanni if they submit their albums for consideration.

As well as the main award, there’s also a Modern Scottish Classic prize as well as The Sound of Young Scotland Award, which was claimed by No Windows, an Edinburgh-based duo, last year. Others such as Frightened Rabbit and the Cocteau Twins have also picked up awards over the years in the various categories.

The winners of the Album of the Year award will receive £20,000 but there is also prizes for the runners up with nine getting £1,000 each.

The award winners will be announced on Thursday, October 24 and will form part of Stirling’s 900th anniversary celebrations, which also included the recent Summer Sessions events in the city.

Young Fathers won last year's prizeYoung Fathers won last year's prize (Image: Cameron Brisbane)

It’s something that Stirling Council Leader, councillor Chris Kane, is delighted about as he 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.”

Once the eligible albums have been submitted, 100 impartial ‘nominators’ will rank their five favourite albums with the 20 highest scoring going into a longlist. That will then be whittled down to a shortlist of 10 albums, with one of those being decided by the public in a 72-hour public vote online.

The remaining nine albums for the shortlist will be decided by the SAY Award judging panel, with judges then choosing the winning album which will be announced at the ceremony.

Among those nominated last year were eventual winners Young Fathers as well as Joesef, Brooke Combe and Bemz. 

Robert Kilpatrick, the CEO and creative director of the Scottish Music Industry Association and believes the award is something that celebrates an important part of the culture and identity in this country.

He 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.”