Auntie Flo's Radio Highlife wins the 2019 Scottish Album of the Year award
- Megan Forsyth
- 7 September 2019
credit: Euan Robertson
SAY Award judges select Auntie Flo's album as the winner out of ten outstanding shortlisted Scottish albums
Auntie Flo's Radio Highlife is the winner of this year's prestigious SAY Award, with the DJ and producer collecting £20,000 as part of Scotland's national music prize. The announcement was made in front of artists, music industry figureheads and fans from across the UK at the final exclusive ceremony at Edinburgh's grand Assembly Rooms last night (Fri 6 Sep).
The Scottish Music Industry Association (SMIA) ceremony was hosted by Vic Galloway and Nicola Meighan and also included live performances by up-and-coming Scottish artists LYLO, Heir of the Cursed, Cucina Povera and Man of Moon. The final award for Scottish Album of the Year was announced at the end of the evening and presented to Auntie Flo by Kayus Bankole of Young Fathers, last year's SAY Award winners.
Auntie Flo, also known as Brian d'Souza, is originally from Glasgow and has travelled the world forming his unique 'Afro-futurist' sound which combines electronic and world music influences. He was unable to accept the award in person as he was in Portree performing to thousands of fans at the Skye Live Festival, but Auntie Flo's tour manager and driver, Phil Connor, accepted the award on his behalf. He read out a personal note from d'Souza: 'It's been a privilege to document seven years of adventuring around the globe in this record. It has taken me everywhere from Cuba to South Africa to East Asia. Thank you to everyone who made that happen over the years.'
Prior to the announcement, the SAY Awards judges deliberated backstage to determine Auntie Flo's Radio Highlife as the winner from the Shortlist. Comprised of ten outstanding albums, the Shortlist had been narrowed down from the Longlist of 20 albums, and originally a total of 293 submissions. Nine of the albums included on the Shortlist were chosen by the SAY Award Judging Panel, while one was selected by music fans in an online public vote.
Each Shortlisted album won a £1,000 prize and received a special commemorative art prize at the ceremony, curated by Local Heroes as part of The SAY Award Design Commission. The special awards were crafted by Edinburgh artist Emma McDowall and inspired by the Salisbury Crags in Edinburgh.
'A huge congratulations to Auntie Flo for winning 2019's Scottish Album of the Year (SAY) Award for the incredible Radio Highlife,' said Robert Kilpatrick, General Manager of the Scottish Music Industry Association. 'Albums remain the best delivery mechanism for artists to truly showcase their creative output and artistic identity. I'm incredibly proud that year-on-year, The SAY Award continues to go from strength to strength, showcasing the undeniable talent and diversity of Scottish artists and illuminating our music scene with the ambition, credibility and commitment it so richly deserves.'
The panel of SAY Award judges was comprised of 11 tastemakers from across creative industries and featured a 50:50 gender split. Judges included Arusa Qureshi (Editor, The List), David Mogendorff (Head of Artist Relations (EMEA) – YouTube Music), Jonathan West (Marketing Director – Ticketmaster Artist Services), Lori Duncan (Producer – TUNE, BBC Scotland), Maxie Gedge (Keychange Project Manager at PRS Foundation), Michael Hines (Television and Film Director (Chewin' The Fat, Still Game) and BAFTA Scotland Committee Member), Peggy Hughes (Chair, Literature Alliance Scotland / Programme Director, National Centre for Writing (Norwich), Robin Murray (Online Editor, CLASH Magazine), Ross Sinclair (Artist, Writer, Musician and Professor of Contemporary Art Practice at GSA, Sarah Wall (Senior Events and Outreach Manager – PPL) and Patrycja Kupiec (Director, YWCA Scotland – The Young Women's Movement). The SAY Award places artistic merit above all else and is well-respected amongst artists and within the Scottish music industry.
Scottish Album of the Year (SAY) Award winner 2019:
Auntie Flo - Radio Highlife
Scottish Album of the Year (SAY) Award shortlist 2019:
Aidan Moffat and RM Hubbert - Here Lies The Body
Andrew Wasylyk - The Paralian
Auntie Flo - Radio Highlife
C Duncan - Health
Carla J. Easton - Impossible Stuff
Fergus McCreadie Trio - Turas
Free Love - Luxury Hits
Karine Polwart with Steven Polwart & Inge Thomson - Laws of Motion
Kathryn Joseph - From When I Wake The Want Is
Mastersystem - Dance Music (winner of the public vote)
Past winners of the SAY Award include Young Fathers' Cocoa Sugar (2018), Sacred Paws' Strike A Match (2017), Anna Meredith's Varmints (2016), Kathryn Joseph's Bones You Have Thrown Me And Blood I've Spilled (2015), Young Fathers' Tape Two (2014), RM Hubbert's Thirteen Lost & Found (2013) and the inaugural winner Bill Wells and Aidan Moffat's Everything's Getting Older (2012).