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


Recent News

Union Membership Rises Nationwide in 2020

New research from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that union membership increased in the US in 2020. According to BLS data, union membership rose to 10.8% in 2020, up .5% from 2019. While the total number of wage and salary workers belonging to unions (14.3 million) was down by 321,000, or 2.2%, from 2019, […]

GRAMMY Awards 2021 Ceremony Set for March 14

The 2021 Grammy Awards ceremony will be held on Sunday, March 14. The ceremony, hosted by Trevor Noah, had been scheduled for January 31 but was rescheduled for Sunday, March 14, due to the coronavirus pandemic. “The deteriorating COVID situation in Los Angeles, with hospital services being overwhelmed, ICUs having reached capacity, and new guidance […]

The Taxman Cometh: Tax Considerations for Canadian musicians

Tax time is almost upon us and the annual tax filing of April 30 is fast approaching. Canadian musicians have certain advantages in terms of dealing with the Canadian tax system, and this article will outline how you can reduce your tax liability. Knowing what expenses you can deduct from your income and keeping track […]

Tax Tips for American Musicians

It is going to be quite a tax season this year. Many tax preparers (including me) since last March have gone virtual for their own safety as well as for the safety of their clients. With the technologywe have available to us now, documents can be securely uploaded to cloud portals, meetings can be done […]

Entertainment Unions Announce New Diversity Policy Agenda

Representatives of multiple arts, entertainment, and media unions on February 12 announced a new policy agenda aimed at advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in their respective industries. During a press conference, hosted by the AFL-CIO’s Department of Professional Employees, the union leaders called on Congress to take action on multiple fronts, including: Passing the […]

International Musician Receives Seven National Labor Media Awards

International Musician, the official publication of the AFM, has received seven awards in the 2020 International Labor Communications Association (ILCA) Labor Media Awards. The awards recognize excellence among union publications, websites, film, video, and other media from across North America. It is the first and largest competition exclusively for labor journalists and communicators. “It is […]

Free Directory of Classical Repertoire by Black Composers Recently Launched

The not-for-profit Rachel Barton Pine (RBP) Foundation’s Music by Black Composers (MBC) project has launched its first free online directories of classical music written by Black composers: Repertoire for Violin and Orchestra, and Repertoire for Unaccompanied Solo Violin. MBC works to rectify historic and ongoing racial injustices in the classical music sphere. MBC’s repertoire directories establish a central location for existing […]

DC Musician, Local Officer Finds Peace Through Sewing

When talking to musicians about their lives and careers, the phrase that always occurs during the conversation is: “…and then COVID hit.” It’s been a life- and career-changing event, and one that has allowed/forced musicians to spend time on special projects. For Marta Bradley—bass player and secretary-treasurer of Local 161-710 (Washington, DC)—that project was the […]

Biden Picks Pro-Labor Nominee for US Trade Rep

President-Elect Joe Biden has nominated Katherine Tai to be the US Trade Representative for the incoming administration. If confirmed by the Senate, Tai, who currently serves as the chief trade counsel for the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee, would play a key role in negotiating trade agreements with China and other countries. She would […]

AFM Family Members Awarded 2020 Union Plus Scholarships

Union Plus recently awarded $300,000 in scholarships to 215 students representing 43 unions, including two winners representing the American Federation of Musicians (AFM). This year’s group of scholarship recipients includes university, college, and trade or technical school students from 38 states. The AFM winners are: • Hannah Kavanaugh of Independence, Missouri. Kavanaugh, whose father, Keith […]