THE Weekender Awards are returning for a fourth year, with new categories confirmed for 2023.

As always, there will be recognition for albums, EPs, singles and songs, with our Live Act and Breakthrough Artist categories also back this year.

However, new categories have been established to highlight the work of both acoustic and electronic artists. 

It is hoped the new awards will help shine a light on talent that often goes unnoticed in the Scottish music scene.

This year's awards are generously sponsored by Forth Valley College, Electric Shores, B12 Entertainment, Room 2 and

Iain Smith, editor of The Weekender, said: "On more than one occasion, throughout the course of 2023, I have found myself completely and utterly blown away by the output of artists across the Scottish music scene.

"Considering all this talent, and all the effort put in, it is only right that we continue our annual awards in the hope of shining some light on this incredibly gifted cohort.

"In recent years, we have felt that acoustic and electronic artists - especially those who write and perform solo - have perhaps found it a little harder to reach wider audiences. We hope all those writing in their spare rooms, those performing across the country by themselves, those busking in the cold every weekend, and, really, all those who feel like they are out there on their own will start to feel the recognition they are due for their craft.

"Finally, it is always worth highlighting the support from our sponsors - some of whom have supported the awards from the beginning. They continue to give their backing to the scene and we thank them."

Entry for the 2023 Weekender Awards is completely free and open to managers, PR reps, fans, bloggers, journalists and other interested parties to submit on behalf of others. However, most entries come from bands and artists themselves and they are encouraged to reach out directly.

Artists can enter as many of the categories as they are eligible for. Those entering more than one award are asked to submit separate emails for each. Details on how to enter are below.

The deadline for all entries is Thursday, December 21, 2023, at 12noon.


The Awards - Introducing our sponsors

Alloa and Hillfoots Advertiser:

Forth Valley College is once again sponsoring both the Song of the Year Award and Single of the Year Award categories, while the folks at Electric Shores PR are sponsoring the Breakthrough Artist of the Year Award.

For a second year, B12 Entertainment is sponsoring the Live Act of the Year Award, while Album of the Year Award is backed by Room 2 in Glasgow.

The ever-popular EP of the Year Award will be sponsored by


How to enter - Introducing yourself

Email submissions to containing the following information:

  • Name of the band/artist
  • Contact details for the band/artist (email address or phone number)
  • Category entered – please send separate emails for different categories
  • Link to entry material (Spotify, Bandcamp, YouTube, etc.)


The Criteria - Introducing the rules

Alloa and Hillfoots Advertiser:

For any and ALL material to be considered, it must:-

Have been released between November 23, 2022, and December 1, 2023.

Have been created by a Scottish artist, a band with at least half of its members considering themselves Scottish, or bands/artists that have chosen the Scottish music scene as their base of operations and have been located in Scotland for the past two years.


For an Album of the Year Award entry to be considered, it must satisfy the initial entry criteria and:-

  • Be at least eight tracks long at any duration, or at least 30 minutes long with any number of full-length tracks (intros, outros and bridging tracks will not count toward the minimum)
  • Must not have been released in some format previously
  • Must not be a compilation album or a live album



For EP of the Year Award entries to be considered, it must satisfy the initial entry criteria and:- 

  • Feature at least three full-length tracks. Intros/outros, track commentary and songs of less than one minute will not count toward the three-track minimum
  • Can be an EP consisting of previously released singles, so long as no track appears on another EP or album from the same artist previously



For a release to be considered for the Song of the Year Award or the Single of the Year Award, it must satisfy the initial entry criteria and:-

  • Must not be a cover of another artist's track
  • May have been released in the past, so long as there is a material difference between the two releases – including a change from acoustic to full band or vice versa; a re-recording of the original track with significant alterations (both versions must be submitted). A remix of a track from another artist will not be considered.
  • Note:  Some tracks will be eligible for both awards and can be entered in both categories. For reference, the Single of the Year is for more radio-friendly, algorithm-informed, playlist-ready songs, whereas Song of the Year will highlight more complex tracks and more skillful songwriting. 



For Breakthrough Artist of the Year entries to be considered, they must satisfy the initial entry criteria and:-

  • Have released a debut single, EP or album between November 23, 2022, and December 1, 2023.



Entries for the Acoustic Artist of the Year Award or the Electronic Artist of the Year Award, must satisfy the initial entry criteria and:-

  • Be from artists writing and performing as an acoustic act, or electronic act. For reference, the entries may not need be from solo artists, there is no instrumentation requirement, and The Weekender reserves the right to judge eligibility based on information provided and material highlighted.
  • Have released material between November 23, 2022, and December 1, 2023.



The Live Act of the Year Award shortlist will be compiled by The Weekender based on live performances between November 23, 2022, and December 1, 2023.


Further information

All entries are FREE - no payment will be accepted.

A supporting statement is not necessary; however, The Weekender is ALWAYS keen to hear stories from bands and artists.

NOTE: The Weekender reserves the right to move entries to different categories. 

Entries can be submitted by anyone: PR reps, bands, other bands, venue owners and even fans, bloggers, journalists and other interested parties – so long as the entry details are completed.

The deadline for all entries is Thursday, December 21, 2023, at 12noon.

Shortlists will be compiled and announced between Christmas and the new year. Winners of all eight awards will be announced early in 2024.