There’s a distinct Irvine feel about this year’s Scottish Alternative Music Awards.
Maybe it’s the two Irvine bands that have been nominated for awards. Or maybe it’s the awards’ host, who was born and bredin the town.
Whatever it is, organiser and founder Richy Muirhead says it’s going to be the biggest year yet.
Richy, 24, set up the music awards four years ago as part of a university project. But he has carriedon the venture due to its huge success.
For the first time, not one but two Irvine bands have been nominated in separate categories.
On the night, the awards will be hosted by Irvine comic Billy Kirkwood.
Culann have been nominated for Best Rock and What the Blood Revealed are up forthe Best Metal award. With the first appearance of Irvine bands on the nomination list, Richy believes the music scene in the town is heading in the right direction.
He said: “It’s definitely got a bit of an appetite for music from producing artists like this.
“Both acts (Culann and What the Blood Revealed) are set to be touringthe UK/Europe in the next few months, so hopefully the SAMAscan tie in as a nice platform to introduce them to a wider audience.”
The Best Rock category is the most hotly contested of all of the awards.
Richy said: “This category has always been a big part of the SAMAs and many industries take it into account – promoters, radio DJs, festival agents and new music fans.
“So for it to hit over 3000 votes is not a surprise to me, especially with such a strong list of acts.”
The Herald asked Richy if he thought the high number of votes was down to the fact that people in bands have lots of friends, or just that Scottish people love music.
He added: “Its a nice combination of both.
“When big music blogs write about the SAMAs, it can go out to a much larger global audience, so we notice lots of users from the US, Canada, Japan and Europe on our website, along with the Scottish audience also participating.
“It’s a great feeling to know so many people are supporting Scottish artists.”
Winners are set to be announced at a ceremony in Glasgow’s The Garage on Friday, March 8.
For more information on the SAMAs and to buy tickets to the awards ceremony, seewww.officialsama.co.uk.