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 www.afm.org/join.

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Articles, Officer Columns, Vice President from Canada

Streaming Leads to Slim Profits

As discussed last month, album sales have dropped dramatically as consumption has moved decisively toward streaming as the preferred platform. Recent information available online through Digitalmusicnews.com paints a different picture in terms of how artists can expect to benefit from various streaming services.


The AFM: Finding Strength in a Diverse Membership

Diversity within our union cannot be celebrated enough. While our membership runs the gamut in ethnicity, musical genre, age, and gender, the paucity of diversity within many of the workplaces in which we have representational duties continues to impede our effectiveness and growth.


Union Election Transitions

In the December 2016 issue of the International Musician, I devoted my column in part to union election transitions. It seems like a good time to revisit the topic. We think of December as the month that brings the year to a close and January as a month that sets the stage for new beginnings. Many union elections take place in December, and from time to time, new union officers are elected to take the reins of their local. On occasion, the election can be preceded by contentious campaigns that leave the outgoing officers feeling unappreciated.


Recruitment, Retention, and Organizing with a Revitalized Music Performance Trust Fund

After suffering decades of budget reductions from funding cuts imposed by regressive record industry proposals that were first agreed to by the Federation in 1983, new money from online interactive digital distribution and licensing of sound recordings, bargained from the industry by the Federation in 2017, have breathed new life into MPTF.


Maximize Your Income from Recordings

I am pleased to report that the General Agreement for Commercial Announcements (Canada) has been ratified. While there have been some delays in editing, I expect printing and distribution to take place shortly.


Looking Back on 2018 and Ready for an Exciting 2019

As 2018 comes to a close and we begin a new year, it’s an appropriate time to reflect on the past year and plan for what will be coming in 2019. All in all, 2018 was not as financially robust as 2017, but I am predicting the year will end with a comfortable surplus for the AFM.


Live Concert Venues and Media Rights: Are Musicians Sold Short?

When we consider fair wages and working conditions for musicians working roadshows, the Federation’s Pamphlet B and Short Engagement Tour Agreements (SET) are the gold standard.


Hurricane Relief Extended to Hurricanes Florence and Michael

The AFM International Executive Board (IEB) has extended hurricane relief assistance to both Hurricanes Florence and Michael.


Streaming: The Economy of Listening

Below are excerpts from a keynote speech given by SoundExchange President and CEO Mike Huppe at the AFM-FIM International Streaming Conference held in Burbank, California, October 2-3.


Is the Album Doomed?

According to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), album sales in the US for the first half of 2018 (including downloads, CDs, and vinyl) were down 25.8%, compared to a year earlier.








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