Funding Live Music Shows

Showcase Scotland 2024: Wide Days event opportunity

12th June 2024
Awesome Fabulous Music

Global Music Match – open for applications


Global Music Match is now open for applications.  Global Music Match (GMM) launched in 2020 as a pilot initiative.  Recognising the many COVID-19 challenges, GMM aims to raise the profile of artists across international markets using social media and peer-to-peer collaboration. It supports opportunities and networks for export-ready artists internationally and encourages cross border artist collaboration by connecting musicians from around the world, creating new audiences for artists in a range of international locations and providing a groundwork for future international touring development.

The initiative is a collaboration between founding partners Sounds Australia, Showcase Scotland Expo and East Coast Music Association (ECMA), along with export organisations and showcase events from around the world. The 16- week programme is designed to establish real life connections between export-ready artists. Artists will be selected from around 18 countries and placed into groups or “Teams” made up of teams from different countries or regions from around the world. Each team will be led by a team “Coach” who will guide the artists in weekly group meetings and provide support to ensure project activities and timelines are met.

For more information including specific application criteria please visit: Showcase Scotland Expo

The deadline for applications is Friday 16th April.

Awesome Fabulous Music

The Gordon Duncan Experience looking for talented young musicians


The Gordon Duncan Experience is looking for talented young musicians and budding composers from all over Scotland to take part in a brand new composition project. Young Musicians are invited to audition for the Gordon Duncan Experience Composition Project by Sunday 14th March.

Scotland’s Celtic Big Band is inviting musicians aged 14-21 of intermediate level and above, on any instrument and from any musical background who want to develop their composition skills, to audition to join its free Online Composition Masterclasses.

Led by Musical Director Patsy Reid, the 20 successful applicants will work alongside some of Scotland’s top musicians and composers, attending five masterclasses and five one-to-one mentoring sessions online, with the aim of creating a finished piece of music.

Launched by Perth Concert Hall and Perth Theatre in 2010 in honour of late, great Pitlochry piper Gordon Duncan, The Gordon Duncan Experience plays and creates music rooted in Scottish traditions with influences from jazz, rock, pop, blues and classical. The young musicians who have come through its ranks have performed at high-profile events and shared the stage with some of Scotland’s top artists, with many of them going on to study and make a career in music and performance.

For more information please visit:

To find out more about the project and how to audition contact Emma Neck, Creative Learning Co-ordinator (Music)  before the closing date of Sunday 14 March 2021.


Feis Rois Youth Small Grants Scheme


The Feis Rois Youth Small Grants Scheme: Folk and Traditional Music fund opens for applications on Friday 29th January. The Youth Small Grants Scheme is part of a Scottish Government Covid-19 Funding Package aimed at supporting the arts. Feis Rois, one of several organisations awarded funding through the Small Grants Scheme, has a fund budget of £40,000 and is inviting applications from freelance musicians living anywhere in Scotland and working in folk and traditional music.

Applicants can apply for between £500 – £5,000. The grants aim to create work opportunities for freelance musicians and at the same time provide arts activities for children and young people, especially those most affected by Covid-19.

The closing date for applications is midnight on Sunday 14th March.

For more information please visit:


Festive Funding

Christmas and New Year


Christmas and New Year – Our office is open until Wednesday the 23rd but we won’t be processing any new work from Friday 18th through to Monday January 4th.

A big thank you to all the artists we have worked with throughout the year – we look forward to working with you all in 2021.

A wee update on our previous post about the Hardship Fund – the online application portal will close to applicants at midday on 18th December and will reopen at midday on 5th January 2021.

The Hardship Funds for Creative Freelancers aims to support creative freelancers working in Scotland who are experiencing immediate financial hardship due to the loss of income as a result of the COVID – 19 pandemic.

For more information please visit: Hardship Fund for Creative Freelancers

We hope everyone stays safe and well in these difficult times.

Very best Christmas wishes to you all

from the Birnam Team.


Hardship Fund for Creative Freelancers


The Hardship Fund for Creative Freelancers reopened on Tuesday 10 November. The fund aims to support freelance creative professionals working in the arts and creative sector in Scotland who are experiencing immediate financial difficulty due to the loss of income as a result of COVID-19.

It offers a one-off monetary contribution to those who are most deeply impacted and disadvantaged by the cancellation of work as a result of the emergency situation.

All applicants must be based in Scotland and must be able to demonstrate they were working and making income as a freelance creative professional before lockdown began (in March 2020).

The Hardship Fund for Creative Freelancers is open to:

Freelance professionals whose work has direct creative outcomes. This can include (but is not limited to) a visual artist, a writer or maker of poetry, prose or fiction, a playwright, actor or theatre- maker, a comedian, dancer, musician, craft maker or designer.

Freelance professionals whose work directly supports the making and presentation of creative work including events. This can include (but is not limited to) a theatre producer, a lighting designer, a gig promoter, an independent curator or creative producer.

For more information please visit: Creative Scotland: hardship-fund-for-creative-freelancers

Awards Awesome Fabulous

Nominations open for MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards


Public Nominations open for MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards 2020. Nominations are invited for the following awards:

  1. Music Tutor of the Year, sponsored by Creative Scotland
  2. Gaelic Singer of the Year, sponsored by The Highland Society of London
  3. Album of The Year, sponsored by Birnam CD
  4. Up & Coming artist of the Year, sponsored by Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
  5. Event of the Year
  6. Community Music Project of the Year, sponsored by Greentrax Recordings
  7. Citty Finlayson Scots Singer of the Year, sponsored by Traditional Music and Song Association (TMSA)
  8. Trad Video of the Year, sponsored by Threads of Sound
  9. Online Performance of 2020, sponsored by Gordon Duncan Memorial Trust
  10. Services to Gaelic Award, sponsored by Bòrd na Gàidhlig
  11. Original Work of the Year, sponsored by PRS for Music
  12. Trad Music in the Media, sponsored by Sabhal Mòr Ostaig
  13. Musician of the Year, sponsored by the University of the Highlands and Islands

The nomination stage closes on Sunday 18th October.

For more information and to nominate please visit: MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards 2020



New Music Support Fund for Folk In Crisis


New Music Support Fund for Folk In Crisis Launches In Scotland To Help Musicians and Music Production Professionals. Stonehaven Folk Club has teamed up with Hands Up For Trad to start up a fund to help support Folk musicians and music production staff living in Scotland during the crisis.

The Folk Club is providing 20 grants of £250 to help towards living expenses during this period when people are unable to work. It’s hoped that further donations from other organisations and the public will help the fund grow.

Stonehaven Folk Club celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2017 and has twice been voted Club of the Year at the Trad Awards. Through this initiative, the club hopes to be able to help some of the fantastic Folk talent in Scotland get through the next few months and hopefully stay as performing artists.

For more information, to support the project and/or to apply for a grant please visit: Hands Up For Trad.


PRS Open Fund for Music Creators


The PRS Open Fund for Music Creators supports the development of songwriters and composers of all genres and backgrounds who are at different stages of their career. The deadline for applications is 6pm on 5th October 2020.

The fund, which offers grants of up to £5,000, can support projects by songwriters, composers, or artists, bands, producers and performers who are writing their own music or commissioning others.

The project must fulfil three funding priorities:

  • To support the creation, performance and promotion of outstanding new music in any genre.
  • To enable the UK’s most talented music creators to realise their potential
  • To inspire audiences.

For more information please visit:


Funding Music

Help Musicians – Do It Differently Fund now open


Help Musicians – Do It Differently Fund now open for applications. The third round of the Covid-adapted Do It Differently Fund offers musicians a vital package of support to further their creative output, build their business skills and explore ways to maintain their wellbeing during this challenging time.

Fund awardees receive a grant of £3,000 to fulfil their chosen project and bespoke 1-on-1 business guidance with some of the UK music industry’s leading experts. Working with the British Association For Performing Arts Medicine (BAPAM), the package also provides health consultations and online tools for creating healthy practises. In addition, each awardee will receive fully subsidised Pro Membership to the Featured Artists Coalition.

The deadline for submitting applications is 14th September.

For more information please visit:



SAY Award 2020 – open for submissions


SAY Award 2020 – open for submission. The Scottish Album of the Year Award 2020 is open for submissions for Scottish Albums released between 1st April 2019 and 31st May 2020.

Since its inauguration in 2012, The SAY Award has grown to become Scotland’s most popular and prestigious music prize. The award covers all genres of music with previous longlist titles covering rock, alternative, traditional, hip-hop, folk, classical, dubstep, reggae, jazz and pop.

Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, The SAY Award campaign will go digital this year for the first time ever. In line with Government guidelines and with audience and artists’ safety at the forefront, The SAY Award’s live events will move online this year, meaning music fans across the country will have the chance to be part of the traditionally exclusive final award ceremony. All over the world, the music industry is striving to ascertain how to operate in this new normal, as the ramifications of the massive economic and cultural impacts continue to be felt. The SAY Award is committed to providing Scottish artists and music fans with an inspiring campaign which embodies the passion and resolute nature of Scotland’s ever evolving music scene.

The SAY Award ceremony will be broadcast on Thursday 29 October 2020, with more details to be announced. The winning artist will pick up a £20,000 cash prize, with the 9 runners up each being awarded £1,000. Each Shortlisted artist will also receive an exclusively designed piece of artwork from The SAY Award Design Commission.

The deadline for submitting an album is 31st July 2020.

For more information please visit: