Scott Piering (13 September 1946, Duluth, Minnesota – 24 January 2000) was a successful and influential American-born music publicist for many British music acts, including Pulp, The KLF, The Smiths, Stereophonics, The Orb, Placebo, Underworld and The Prodigy. He ran the publicity consultancy, Appearing Promotions.
During his career, Piering was responsible for the promotion of many hit singles. Many bands with whom Piering closely worked attribute much of their early success in the UK Singles Chart to his efforts.
In the book The Manual (How To Have a Number One The Easy Way), written by The KLF's creators Bill Drummond and Jimmy Cauty in the wake of their chart-topping success as alter egos, The Timelords, the authors state that "without [Piering] this book would have to be retitled How to Get to Number 47 – With a Certain Amount of Difficulty.
Piering's work with The KLF also involved contributing a number of narrations and spoken lines to their commercial single releases, including "Justified and Ancient", "Last Train to Trancentral" ("Okay, everybody lie down on the floor and keep calm"), "3 a.m. Eternal" ("Ladies and gentlemen, The KLF have now left the building"), a long opening narration to "America: What Time Is Love?", and narration of the KLF movie, The Rites of Mu.
Piering's was furthermore the voice that announced the band's departure from the music industry following their subversive appearance at the 1992 BRIT Awards ceremony: "Ladies and gentlemen, The KLF have now left the music industry". Piering's voice work for The KLF led to his being referred to as "The Voice of Mu".
Piering died from cancer on 24 January 2000, aged 53. In 2001, the British Radio Academy founded "The Scott Piering Award" as one of their annual awards, in memory of "...this great man who single-handedly did so much to improve understanding between the music and radio industries.
To keep that memory alive, The Radio Academy presents this award each year to others who have made significant contributions in the promotion of product and understanding of the music industry to their colleagues in radio".
The Scott Piering Award Winners
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- Tony Wadsworth 2009
- Martin Nelson 2008
- Colin Martin 2007
- Gary Farrow 2006
- Geoff Travis 2005
- Feargal Sharkey 2004
- The Bee Gees 2003
- Muff Winwood 2002
- Martin Mills 2001
The gig featured performances from many bands indebted to Piering for his promotional work, and a tribute album of the performance, augmented by additional studio recordings, was released under the title 4Scott in August 2002.