The City of Austin is no longer accepting applications for the Austin Music Disaster Relief Grant. The deadline for submission expired on January 28, 2022 at 5 p.m.

Find helpful resources:  

  • City of Austin's ATXRecovers.com - A one-stop resource to help businesses and individuals recover from the financial hardships caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Visit the Musician & Artist section that includes services to help musicians and artists that are recovering from economic hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  
  • Economic Development Department’s Small Business Resources Directory - Database of local, state, federal, and community resources. Filter by “Disaster Relief” to find immediate support for businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

 

Austin Music Disaster Relief Grant Dashboard:

View larger version of Program Metrics 

The Austin Music Disaster Relief Grant provides one-time, unrestricted $2,000 grants to local professional musicians, independent promoters, and music industry workers facing hardships due to the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Austin City Council approved Resolution No. 20210610-077 on June 10, 2021 to dedicate $4 million from Austin’s allocation of the federal American Rescue Plan Act to support the music industry. There is $2.3 million available for the Austin Music Disaster Relief Grant. The program guidelines align with Austin Music Commission Recommendation No: 20210820-1a (PDF)


 

Application Assistance

Technical Support and Application Status 

As part of a partnership with the City of Austin, The Long Center will review all submitted applications and administer grant funds. Contact The Long Center: Email MusicDisasterRelief@thelongcenter.org or call 512-457-5130

 

Application Assistance 

Contact Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts (TALA): Email MusicDisasterRelief@talarts.org or call 512-575-2826

 

Grant Guidelines

Eligible Applicants

Eligible applicants must meet the following requirements:  

Ineligible Applicants
  • City of Austin Employees 
  • Individuals younger than 18 years old 
  • Individuals who do not meet the definitions of Professional Musicians, Independent Promoters, and Music Industry Workers 
  • Individuals who live outside of the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) 
  • Businesses, organizations, government agencies, and public authorities 
Application Definitions

The following definitions apply for the purposes of this application:  

  • Applicant - The individual applying for the Austin Music Disaster Relief Grant. 
  • Independent Promoter - Must meet all the following requirements:
    • No more than three staff
    • At least two years of documentation showing that applicant has curated and promoted live shows featuring musicians and bands 
  • Music Industry Worker -
    • Defined as an individual whose current or primary occupation is or has been within music industry for at least two years 
    • Includes creative workers working in the music industry sector, including staff and associated personnel working in venues and organizations within the sector 
  • Professional Musician - Must meet at least one of the following requirements:  
    • At least two years of documentation showing that Applicant has regularly performed as a professional musician—solo or as part of a band—in live performances to public audiences
    • Or six released recordings (singles)
    • Or six promotionally released music videos
Required Documentation

Applications will not be reviewed without proper documentation spanning two years from the date of application. Documentation that demonstrates active participation as a Professional Musician, Independent Promoter, and music industry worker is acceptable. Points are not associated with this application requirement, but at least two years of documentation is required to confirm eligibility: 

  • Current resume or curriculum vitae (CV)     
  • Current biography     
  • Screenshot or PDF of LinkedIn work history 
  • Press demonstrating involvement within the music sector 
  • Portfolio (web links, screenshots, printouts, scans, etc.) 
  • Marketing materials of performances, exhibitions, showings, productions, collections, or recitals. 
  • Materials showing merchandise created and sold, including screenshots of websites that exhibit or sell the Applicant's products 
  • Credits or liner notes 
  • Purchased advertising to Austin residents 
  • Contracts for performances, exhibitions, showings, commissions, recitals, productions, or production services 
  • Letter from employer or manager stating role and involvement in the music sector 
  • Website screenshot of events or concert schedule with locations 

Acceptable file types: .csv, .doc, .docx, .odt, .pdf, .rtf, .txt, .wpd, .wpf, .gif, .jpg, .jpeg, .png, .svg, .tif, .tiff.  

Application Scoring Matrix
Category Criteria Available Points
Household
  • Combination of average annual household earnings/wages (after taxes) for 2020 and 2021 and number of household members 
  • Applicant home address located in a Qualified Census Tract (QCT) 
  • Number of years residing in the Austin-Round Rock, TX Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)  
  • Number of residential moves due to economic hardship 
  • Lack of access to a traditional bank or credit union 
Up to 50 Points
Work History
  • Applicant hasn’t returned to pre-pandemic annual household earnings/wages since March 2020 
Up to 20 Points
Healthcare
  • Lack of affordable healthcare access 
Up to 10 Points
Grant Application History
  • Previously didn't receive Austin Music Disaster Relief Grant and/or Austin Creative Worker Relief Fund grants 
Up to 4 Points
COVID-19 Related Data
  • Limited access to Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and high-speed internet that prevents Applicant from taking jobs in the Austin music industry 
  • COVID-19 Impacts: Increased Costs of Household Expenses; Increased Costs of Doing Business; Inability to make rent or mortgage payments; Cancellation of events; Pay/Salary cuts and/or Termination of staff / contractors; Discrimination; Losses due to unrefunded deposits, leases & other down-payments 
Up to 16 Points

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Application

 

Should I apply as an individual or a sole proprietor?   

Applicants should select “Individuals” in the application portal.   

Do I have to provide a bank statement or receipts that show an economic loss from COVID-19?  

No. You do not need to provide receipts, furlough notices, bank statements, or anything else demonstrating an economic loss. As part of the application, you will check a box certifying that you experienced an economic hardship due to the pandemic (e.g., loss of job, reduction in hours, reduction in income, medical expenses, etc.). 

 

Is this application available in multiple languages?  

Yes. This application is available in Chinese Simplified, Chinese Traditional, English, Korean, Spanish, and Vietnamese. If you need the application in another language, please contact atxrecovers@austintexas.gov.  

The City of Austin is committed to compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Reasonable modifications and equal access to communications will be provided upon request - including translation and interpretation services. For assistance, please contact the Economic Development Department at atxrecovers@austintexas.gov. The City receives and accepts Video Relay Service (VRS) calls from people who are Deaf or hard-of-hearing through Relay Texas 7-1-1.  

 

What should I do if I am having technical difficulties with the application?     

Please contact Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts (TALA) to report any technical issues with the application system at MusicDisasterRelief@talarts.org or call 512-575-2826

 

Will I get confirmation that my application has been received?   

Applicants will receive a confirmation email at the email address provided in the application. The confirmation email will include any additional information about next steps.  

 

What are my next steps after I submit my grant application?    

The Long Center will contact all applicants and notify them if they are or are not approved for funding. Those approved will receive funds directly from The Long Center. 

 

How will the grant recipients be selected?   

Every application will be evaluated against a scoring matrix that includes criteria for economic vulnerability and equity. Individuals from historically marginalized communities are especially encouraged to apply. This is not a first-come, first-serve program. 

 

How can I check my application status?   

For application status, please contact The Long Center at MusicDisasterRelief@thelongcenter.org or call 512-457-5130

 

What will the City of Austin and/or The Long Center do with my information?  

The information you provide in your application for the Austin Music Disaster Relief Grant is processed by the City of Austin’s third-party administrator (The Long Center) for the purposes of determining your eligibility for the program. The Long Center has contractually agreed not to use this information for any other purpose.  

The information you provide is subject to the provisions of the Texas Public Information Act and might be released to the public through a Public Information Request in accordance with Chapter 552 of the Government Code.  

If grant information is requested through a Public Information Request, the City of Austin will notify applicants and give them an opportunity to object to the disclosure of information. The information will then be sent to the Office of the Texas Attorney General (AG) for a ruling. If the applicant does not respond explaining why this information is confidential, the AG could presume it is public and advise the City of Austin to release the information.  

Please contact the City of Austin Economic Development Department at EDD@austintexas.gov if you have questions regarding public disclosures. 

 

Can individual members of bands apply to receive the Austin Music Disaster Relief Grant?   

Yes. Any Austin musician who meets the minimum eligibility criteria may qualify to receive funding. 

 

Can I apply for a grant for multiple members of my band or my music business?   

No. All eligible musicians, promoters, and music industry workers must individually apply for a grant.  

Eligibility

 

Am I eligible to apply if I received funding from other City of Austin COVID-19 programs?   

Yes. All applicants will be reviewed but first-time applicants will receive greater consideration.  

 

What qualifies as a “released song”?  

“Released song” is defined as a musical creative output from an artist available for sale or distribution. It is a broad term covering the many different forms music distribution, including: Standard Album; Digital Stream; Extended Play; Compilation; Single; Mixtape; DJ Mix; Acoustic Mix; Live Album; Soundtrack; Promo; Cast Recordings; Charity Album; Concept Album; Cover Album; Demo Album; Remix; Split; and, Sampler.  

 

Does an original song released on Soundcloud count as a release?  

Yes. Songs released on Soundcloud, iTunes, Spotify, Bandcamp, and other audio distribution outlets will be acceptable as audio releases.  

  

Does a letter from someone in a band in which you played live gigs suffice as a documentation requirement?   

Yes. A letter confirming employment from a band leader, live music venue, or other employer is among the items that can be included in your supporting documents in your application.  

Funding

 

Is this a one-time payment?  

The Austin Music Disaster Relief Grant is a one-time payment.   

 

Do I need to repay the dollars received through the Austin Music Disaster Relief Grant?   

No. The awardee does not need to repay grant funds to the City of Austin.  

 

Is there a matching funds requirement?   

No. There is not a matching funds requirement for the Austin Music Disaster Relief Grant.  

  

Are eligible musicians, promoters, and music industry workers guaranteed to receive funds?  

No. Due to widespread need, the city anticipates requests for aid will surpass the $2.3 million allocated to the program.   

 

How will I receive funds from the City of Austin if selected for the Austin Music Disaster Relief Grant?  

The Long Center will mail funds by check. Factors that might affect this timeline include the volume of grants being processed and the delivery timing of the United States Postal Service.  

 

2020 Austin Music Disaster Relief Fund

The Austin Music Disaster Relief Fund is a $1.5 million fund providing $1,000 grants to Austin’s musicians to cover emergency needs.