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


Alfonso Pollard

“Cromnibus” Government Spending Package: What’s in It for the Arts?

As the 113th Congress comes to a close and Republicans prepare to take over both chambers, Congressional leaders on both sides of the aisle, for both practical and political reasons, battled in the final month of 2014 over passage of government spending priorities.

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The New Balance of Power in Washington, DC

On November 4, AFM members across the country exercised their rights as they voted in national midterm elections. As Republican candidates picked up victories across the country, important AFM House and Senate champions from both parties were able to retain their seats. Our eyes were set on those who, over the years, have exercised leadership […]

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Revised Airline Travel Advice for Musicians with Instruments

For years, musicians have faced numerous uncertainties when traveling on commercial aircraft. Many have been refused boarding, while those trying to make connecting flights have had to settle for inconveniences in order to complete their journey. In some cases, musicians have had to make the choice between stowing rare, expensive, and often irreplaceable musical instruments […]

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The Power of Organizing Through Diversity

On October 5-7, the AFM Diversity Committee met in Las Vegas, Nevada, to set local and national organizing plans in motion for 2014 and 2015.  Under the supervision of AFM President Ray Hair, Director of Organizing & Education Paul Frank, and myself, the committee laid out plans to survey and identify potential organizing opportunities within […]

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African Elephant Ivory Update

Our work on this issue continues. Working with the League of American Orchestras (the League), the National Association of Violin and Bow Makers, the National Association of Music Merchants, and others, our group continues to meet with top Obama Administration officials, members of Congress, and their staff to shape new policies while fighting against the […]

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Film Incentive Reform Act of 2014: A Powerful New Tool and Voice for American Musicians

The AFM is leading the charge against the offshoring of American jobs in music, while at the same time protecting the values we uphold as artists. American workers should feel confident that their government will not bestow lucrative tax subsidies on wealthy corporations that send jobs overseas. AFM President Ray Hair stated: “There is no […]

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AFM Leadership Advocates Musicians’ Priorities in Washington, DC

Founded in 1896, the American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada has for 118 years represented the interests of professional musicians across the country. The union has a proud history of successful legislative and political action in Washington, DC. For almost a century, the AFM has taken a leadership role fighting to […]

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Update on International Travel and African Elephant Ivory

Since publication of the April IM article about African elephant ivory, specifically relating to the adverse effect of Director’s Order No. 210 (the Order), we have heard from many AFM members looking for concrete solutions.

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Urgent Call to Action: Register Your Instrument to Help Avoid Interrupted International Travel

Do you have a passport for your musical instrument? If you don’t, here’s how one scenario might play out. You book or land a job overseas in “paradise” or you travel abroad to participate in a glorious international student music festival. You leave the US without a hitch, instrument in tow, and in full view. […]

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TEMPO: National Launch of the New Campaign

In January, the AFM marked the national roll out of TEMPO: The New Campaign. Over the past six months, the AFM Office of Government Relations under the guidance of AFM President Ray Hair has introduced Federation officers and locals to a new tool designed to give greater political leverage to our members. The Office of […]

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