In September 2020, 14 music export organizations from around the world united for an industry first nine-week program entitled Global Music Match.

Envisioned by Sounds Australia, Showcase Scotland Expo, and Canada’s East Coast Music Association (ECMA), Global Music Match was piloted with 96 artists to continue raising their profile in international music markets despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now, many of these artists will return for a final collaboration – the Global Music Marathon – taking place during Folk Alliance International’s debut digital event Folk Unlocked on Friday, February 26th from 3:30pm to 6:30pm CT (Central US Time), as part of the event’s closing party in conjunction with Bramble.

The marathon is the culmination of the GMM initiative, featuring many of the artists from the pilot program who collaborated to create new video performances that will be premiered during the Global Music Marathon in real time. Glenny G, Sounds Australia’s Export Music Producer, will serve as host and emcee of the global event.

For a lot of the participating musicians, it won’t be the only time they will appear during Folk Unlocked. To see schedules for the artists as they develop, look through the artist pages on this site, or head to

Global Music Match will also present a special panel during Folk Alliance, at 11.30am CT Monday February 22nd. The panel, “Global Music Match: A Pandemic Success Story” will feature representatives from the export agencies, coaches and artists themselves who participated in the pilot initiative – including Showcase Scotland Expo’s Lisa Whytock, Icelandic musician Svavar Knútur, English folk star Lady Nade, Marta Robles from Barcelona quartet Las Migas, Woodford Folk Festival’s Chloe Goodyear and Charly Lowry, a musical powerhouse from Pembroke, NC. 

With the Marathon bringing a formal end to the pilot GMM program, organisers are thrilled to confirm that work is underway towards a second Global Music Match, set to be launched later this year. Applications will be open soon – keep an eye on for more details, and refer to your local export office. 

Industry and artists who want to learn more, can visit the Global Music Match Virtual Exhibition Booth daily during the Folk Unlocked event, from 10 am – 11:30 am and 2 pm – 3:30 pm CT, Monday – Thursday. 

To register to attend the (pay what you can)  Folk Unlocked Conference, head to



Envisioned by Sounds Australia, Showcase Scotland Expo, and Canada’s East Coast Music Association (ECMA), Global Music Match was piloted in September 2020 to continue raising the profile of local artists in international music markets despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Breaking artists into a new territory is a challenging process at the best of times, so the GMM program is designed as a unique response to the limitations imposed on the live music sector at this time, and makes use of social media and peer-to-peer collaboration to increase networks and exposure for export-ready artists internationally, providing a groundwork for future international touring development. The programme also supports participating artists to upskill their social media activity, and encourages cross-border collaboration by connecting musicians from around the world. 

Working with an industry coach, artists are grouped into teams of six with musicians from different cultures and countries. Each week, musicians from each country introduce another artist from their team to their social media followers to cross-promote each other’s music and careers to their respective audiences, until all the artists have been presented. 

For more information about Global Music Match, visit:


Folk Unlocked is the inaugural virtual event from the team behind Folk Alliance International.

Established in 1989, Folk Alliance International (FAI) is the world’s largest gathering of the folk music industry and community. The event became renowned by fans and musicians alike for its unique set up: taking over a hotel in cities around North America, where each room was turned into a showcase room. Nights are spent traversing the hallways, following your ears to the best sounds, and discovering some incredible talent from around the world along the way.

In 2020, FAI was one of the last events to happen – in January in New Orleans – before Covid-19 shut down music conferences and festivals around the world. Shortly thereafter, they became one of the first to commit to a digital event for 2021, Folk Unlocked.

The move provided organisers and the artists who will play the event ample time to prepare for the virtual conference, set to take place from the 22nd to the 26th of February.

To register to attend the (pay what you can)  Folk Unlocked Conference, head to