The Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019 is to team up with Amazon Music as digital partner.
It’s the first time that Amazon Music has collaborated with the Mercury Prize, following partnerships with Spotify in 2018 and Apple Music in 2017.
Amazon Music was recently revealed as the fastest-growing streaming service. It is also reaches an older demographic compared to Spotify and Apple Music, which could introduce the more established Mercury nominees to a new audience.
Amazon Music will promote the Hyundai Mercury Prize from the shortlist announcement through to the awards ahow in September. It will also host the official playlist featuring the 12 shortlisted artists and albums, as well as a selection of others. Music fans can also ask Alexa for facts and insight about the Mercury Prize.
The streaming tie-up comes at a time of renewed focus on the long-player, with the second edition of National Album Day.
The shortlist of 12 Mercury albums will be revealed at a live launch, hosted by BBC Music’s Huw Stephens, on Thursday 25 July. The shortlist will also be announced live at 11am on Mary Anne Hobbs’ show on BBC Radio 6 Music.
The 2019 Hyundai Mercury Prize judges are: Annie Mac, Clara Amfo, Danielle Perry (broadcaster & writer), Gaz Coombes, Jamie Cullum, Jeff Smith (head of music, 6 Music & Radio 2), Jorja Smith, Mike Walsh (head of music, Radio X), Phil Alexander (creative director, Kerrang!/contributing editor, Mojo), Stormzy, Tshepo Mokoena (editorial director, Vice.com), Will Hodgkinson (chief rock & pop critic, The Times). The chair of the judging panel is Jeff Smith.
David Wilkinson, Mercury Prize chairman, said: “There were over 200 albums entered for the 2019 Hyundai Mercury Prize - and the judges spend many months listening to these and then meet to decide on the shortlist of 12 ‘Albums of the Year’. This has been an exciting year for British and Irish music so it’s going to be tough for them choosing just 12 albums. After last year’s successful event we’re looking forward to an equally diverse and eclectic shortlist being announced by Huw Stephens on 25 July.”
The 2019 awards show will take place on Thursday, September 19 at the Eventim Apollo, Hammersmith. The event will feature live performances by many of the 12 shortlisted artists.
David Pugh, Hyundai Motor UK Marketing Director, said: “Our title partnership of the Hyundai Mercury Prize has over the last few years been integral to growing awareness of our brand here in the UK. Our campaign this year will continue to support innovation in British music and we look forward to seeing what surprises the 2019 shortlist will produce.”
Albums by British and Irish artists with a UK release date between July 21, 2018 and July 19, 2019 are eligible for the 2019 Prize.