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



A Win for Local 293 and Hamilton, Ontario: Musician Fair Wage Policy Approved

In February, the Hamilton, Ontario, city council overwhelmingly passed a new policy that guarantees fair wages for musicians at all city-funded events. During the pandemic, Hamilton Mayor Fred Eisenberger put together a task force on economic recovery, which included the music industry as a separate sector for the first time. If the city wanted to […]

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Angela Chan

Keyboardist Opens Doors to the Arts and Broadens Representation in the Union Angela Chan started training in classical piano at age four. She discovered the intricacies of jazz in high school, but as a college sophomore she realized her true passion: musical theater. She found that musical theater allowed for a perfect blend of musical […]

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MPTF Announces Second Annual Music Family Scholarship

A scholarship fund using the assets of the recording industry’s Music Performance Trust Fund (MPTF) encourages the children of professional musicians to pursue higher education and become leaders in their chosen fields. This year, the MPTF will again grant $100,000 in scholarship funds to qualified applicants throughout North America. “The pandemic has hit our profession […]

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MPTF Supports Local 586 Musicians and Arizona Arts Community

Gabriel Bey of Local 586 (Phoenix, AZ), longtime arts promoter and union committee outreach chair, came up with an idea to bolster the Phoenix arts community during the pandemic. With a grant from the Music Performance Trust Fund (MPTF), he and Sandra Bassett, also of Local 586, created a special live-streamed concert series to celebrate […]

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Hi-Tech Hearing Aids Make for Easy Listening

It’s no secret that loud music degrades hearing over time. Rock and blues icon Eric Clapton, who was famous for turning up the amp to 11, has opened up in recent years about his near deafness and tinnitus. Last year, Huey Lewis of Local 6 (San Francisco, CA) was diagnosed with Ménière’s disease, a disorder of […]

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American Rescue Plan Includes COBRA Benefits

The American Rescue Plan includes a provision that grants a 100% subsidy for six months of health care premiums for COBRA-eligible people who lose their jobs or eligibility for employer coverage for the period from April 1 to September 30, 2021. Under the law, those employees will not have to pay any premiums for six months. […]

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Senator Tim Kaine Honored by Local 125

At their quarterly meeting, Local 125 (Norfolk, VA) welcomed special guest Virginia Senator Tim Kaine, who was made an honorary AFM member. Kaine lives in Richmond, and travels the state when the Senate is in recess. According to Tom Reel, vice president of Local 125, the special event had been in the works since 2018 […]

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Met and Dallas Symphony Orchestra Hold Joint Benefit Concerts

Dallas Symphony Orchestra (DSO) organized a unique collaboration, inviting musicians of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra to join the DSO on stage for concerts April 30 and May 1. The Met musicians, represented by Local 802 (New York City), have not performed together in over a year, since the COVID-19 shutdowns, and have gone nearly that […]

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Boston Symphony Orchestra Plans Return to Tanglewood

Like many other festivals, the Tanglewood Music Festival is preparing to reopen to audiences this summer. The Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Boston Pops, represented by Local 9-535 (Boston, MA) will return to their summer home at Tanglewood for live performances in July and August. The festival will run for six weeks, about half of […]

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Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra to Perform Summer Season Under Current Contract

The musicians of the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra (CSO) and management of the Chautauqua Institution have agreed to extend the terms of the current musicians’ contract agreement through September 2021, while also making adjustments that allow for more flexibility in crafting the 2021 season. Five weeks of performances will take place during Chautauqua’s renowned summer season. […]

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