The Upstate Music Awards were created to honor musicians and bands making original music, as well as the producers, studio engineers, videographers, and artists who work with them. All contestants must live and work within the 864 area code. This means nominees will only be eligible if they live in the following counties: Abbeville, Anderson, Cherokee, Greenville, Greenwood, Laurens, McCormick, Newberry, Oconee, Pickens, Saluda, Spartanburg, Union, and York.
NOTE: Musical artists must perform 75% or more original material to participate in the Upstate Music Awards; cover/variety bands are not eligible.
Nominations Open – Thursday, November 12th, 2020
Nominations Close – Monday, December 21st, 2020
Voting Begins – Monday, January 4th, 2021
Voting Ends – Monday, January 25th, 2021
Finalists Announced – Early February 2021
Categories and Rules:
Artist of the Year — The committee will select the Artist of the Year based on both fan response and the artist’s overall musical contributions in 2020. This category is closed during the nomination and voting period.
Best Album — Eligible to artists that released a new album of 75% or more original material in 2020. For our purposes, an “Album” is at least eight tracks OR longer than twenty five minutes.
Best EP — Eligible to artists that released a new EP of 75% or more original material in 2020. For our purposes, an “EP” cannot be more than seven tracks OR longer than twenty five minutes.
Best Single — Eligible to artists that released a new original single in 2020.
Best Music Video — Eligible to artists that released a music video of an original song — either performance or scripted — in 2020. This award will recognize the artist, director, and / or production company.
Best New Artist — Eligible to new artists that began recording or performing original music in 2020.
Best Solo Artist — Eligible to recording or performing solo artists that released new original music and/or played a show in 2020. For our purposes, a “Solo Artist” is defined as one person.
Best Collaboration — Eligible to artists that released an original collaboration in 2020. For our purposes, a “Collaboration” refers to a recording by two or more local artists that don’t frequently work together.
Best Studio Producer / Engineer — Eligible to studio producers and engineers that worked on an original local release in 2020. For our purposes, a “local release” refers to music from an artist based in the 864 area
Best Album Art / Visual Design — Eligible to artists credited with single / EP / album artwork, show promo, stage design, or any other visually creative pieces for music in 2020.
Write-in Vote — Eligible to original artists who didn’t meet the criteria for any other category (maybe they didn’t release anything new in 2020) — but you still feel deserves to be recognized. THE REASON FOR THE NOMINATION MUST BE INCLUDED OR IT WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED.
864 Award — Eligible to Upstate artists, residents, and local music supporters that demonstrate outstanding character, activism, philanthropy, and compassion for our music scene. THE REASON FOR THE NOMINATION MUST BE INCLUDED OR IT WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED.