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.
July 1, 2021
As an author or songwriter, one has to love the concept of copyright. After centuries of debate, most effectively through the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), there are now both domestic laws and international treaties that protect your rights as a creator (with variances called National Treatment from country to country). As the creator and […]
June 1, 2021
For musicians, the light at the end of the pandemic tunnel—having live music resurface—will be excruciatingly slow. We already knew that. It’s common knowledge that having a large percentage of the public vaccinated and achieving herd immunity is key to venues reopening. Canada is not exempt from having its share of anti-vaxers, anti-maskers, and conspiracy theorists. Vaccine […]
May 1, 2021
Canada has a long history of union victories that have defined our society, prosperity, and social programmes. Within the labour movement’s success lay pertinent lessons. The established labour scene of the early 1900s was dominated by many small craft unions—each organized according to the identity of a specific skill, and therefore very exclusive. Meanwhile, unskilled […]
April 1, 2021
en français The longer the pandemic goes on, the more exposed the weaknesses in the social structure become. Those with precarious work (e.g. gigging musicians) have struggled for mere survival. When the “Great Reset” happens, certainly there are a plethora of improvements to be made. One of the major objectives of the Canadian Labour Congress […]
March 1, 2021
When the pandemic effectively demolished live music in mid-March of last year, the AFM Canadian Office immediately dispatched letters to whomever in government was in a position to be of assistance, as identified with the aid of our knowledgeable lobbyist, Isabel Metcalfe. While I’m sure our plea to recognize the severity of the situation did […]
January 1, 2021
en français “Schools closed, church services cancelled, restaurants, shops, theatres, and venues shuttered, public gatherings limited and then banned, and a $5 ‘civic duty’ fine levied against those refusing to wear a mask,” was how it was reported. Sound familiar? Interestingly, those events took place between 1918 and 1920, when the so-called “Spanish Flu” claimed […]
December 1, 2020
(en français) Broadcasting, and the sectors it supports, account for a huge economic impact on Canada’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). In 2019, broadcasting alone accounted for $9.1 billion of GDP, revenues of $16.9 billion, and represented 41,901 jobs. Film and video were $4.3 billion of GPD, revenues of $13.9 billion, and 71,027 jobs. Music and […]
November 1, 2020
français I have previously articulated that today’s society is blissfully oblivious of how a five-day week, an eight-hour working day, holidays, maternity leave, healthcare, and the simple right to organize (along with many other benefits) transpired. The perceived value of these has become minimized, and the desire to maintain the required solidarity has been lost, […]
October 1, 2020
Revisions to Canada’s Copyright Act are imminent, and indications are that many of the recommendations submitted by the Canadian Federation of Musicians (CFM), perhaps most, have a very good chance of making it into legislation. Contained within our submission was expansion of the private copying regime, administered by the Canadian Private Copying Collective (CPCC), in […]
September 1, 2020
en français When the pandemic is contained and conditions are favourable for live music to restart, we must all be prepared for an unprecedented, extremely difficult recovery. Every facet of the business/life we love will be tested—severely so—and the one thing that will ensure survival is also the most difficult thing to achieve: Solidarity. It […]