Now is the right time to become an American Federation of Musicians member. From ragtime to rap, from the early phonograph to today's digital recordings, the AFM has been there for its members. And now there are more benefits available to AFM members than ever before, including a multi-million dollar pension fund, excellent contract protection, instrument and travelers insurance, work referral programs and access to licensed booking agents to keep you working.

As an AFM member, you are part of a membership of more than 80,000 musicians. Experience has proven that collective activity on behalf of individuals with similar interests is the most effective way to achieve a goal. The AFM can negotiate agreements and administer contracts, procure valuable benefits and achieve legislative goals. A single musician has no such power.

The AFM has a proud history of managing change rather than being victimized by it. We find strength in adversity, and when the going gets tough, we get creative - all on your behalf.

Like the industry, the AFM is also changing and evolving, and its policies and programs will move in new directions dictated by its members. As a member, you will determine these directions through your interest and involvement. Your membership card will be your key to participation in governing your union, keeping it responsive to your needs and enabling it to serve you better. To become a member now, visit


MPTF: Unlimited Opportunities for Local Recruitment and Retention

Ray Hair

I was a 19-year-old college student when I first came in direct contact with the American Federation of Musicians. Of course, I’d heard about the musicians’ union and how it stood for good faith and fair dealing in the music business between musicians and unscrupulous employers, managers, and booking agents. As a young freelance musician, […]

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Perseverance in Organizing Leads to Power for Employees

One of the most challenging tasks we have as a union is to organize. It takes commitment, resources, patience, perseverance, and tenacity. Organizing is the life-blood of a strong union. Without new members and new bargaining units, there is a slow trickle of declining membership. As a union loses members, there is a loss of […]

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Silly Rabbits and Wily Coyotes

Alan Willaert Pic

Bill C11, the online streaming bill, passed its third reading in the House of Commons and has now landed in the Senate for approval. If passed, the bill would compel streaming platforms, such as Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime, Spotify, and others to add more Canadian content, or in the wording of the bill, “contribute in […]

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Another Sour Note from the Supremes

John Acosta

The following is based on my own opinions and is not meant to represent the opinions of our union administration or the AFM International Executive Board (IEB). While I suspect some will frown upon my commenting on the recent decision by the Supreme Court, I am of the view that the union movement is a […]

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2022 Another Banner Year for Film and TV Musicians

The Film Musicians Secondary Markets Fund (FMSMF) once again hit a record high in residuals collected for musicians in fiscal year 2022 (ending 3/31/2022). These secondary market residuals were established in the AFM’s Basic Theatrical and Basic Television agreements. The residuals have been collected by the FMSMF since the 1970s. They have grown over the […]

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Working Musicians Bill of Rights

My career has gone from playing in orchestras, opera companies, and Broadway shows to arts administration, and of course, the labor advocacy, organizing, and education work I do here at the AFM. In these many roles, I’ve often been called to help musicians out of various problem situations. Sometimes I shake my head upon hearing […]

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