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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Executive Board Members, Officer Columns

Music Is a Team Sport, and So Is the AFM!

The shared experiences that come from the creation, reproduction, and live performance of music bring people together in ways that no other art form can. Two people who cannot speak the same language or are miles apart philosophically can be united, if only for a few moments, through music. A hit song broadcast on the […]


Chicago’s Gem by the Lake: Grant Park Festival Orchestra

Spring in our Windy City always brings the anticipated opening of outdoor venues with numerous concerts throughout the city. This year marks the 88th season of the Grant Park Festival with concerts on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, from June 15 through August 20. With programming that includes symphonic and choral works and diverse pop attractions, it is the largest and longest running festival in the United States, featuring concerts that are free and open to all.


AMFA Judiciary Hearing Testimony

Mr. Chairman, Congressman Chabot, and members of the Committee: I am honored to speak to you today in support of the American Music Fairness Act. I am a bassist, songwriter, and producer, and a longtime resident of Nashville, Tennessee, Music City. As President of the Nashville Musicians Association and an International Officer of the AFM, […]


Local Leadership Should Help Musicians Organize from Within

On Monday February 7, the report to President Joe Biden from the White House Task Force on Worker Organizing and Empowerment was released. It is historically significant for organized labor. The task force is chaired by Vice President Kamala Harris and Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh. The report begins: “The Biden-Harris Administration believes that increasing […]


Stronger Together!

After a very complicated and mixed 2021, we have the good fortune of moving forward into a new year. Like waking up to a new sunny morning after many days of thunderstorms, a new year brings new hope, but during these uncertain times, new challenges as well. For those of you who have lost loved […]


Starting the New Year Clean and Fresh

Looking back at the past couple of years makes me think of a laundry cycle. Throw everything into the machine, it fills with water. Then, the soaking begins, followed by a lot of agitation, rinse, and spin. Then it’s either thrown into the dryer or hung out to dry. At the end of the cycle, […]


Why the AFM Player Conferences Are Important

by Terryl Jares, International Executive Board Member and President of Local 10-208 (Chicago, IL) This issue of the International Musician features reports from the AFM player conferences that took place during July and August. These are extremely important organizations within our AFM. From 1962 through 1995, the five player conferences were established and obtained recognition […]


Time to Ask “The Question”

by Dave Pomeroy, International Executive Board Member and President of Local 257 (Nashville, TN) Over the past few decades, even before the pandemic, almost everything about the way we make records has been transformed. Hit recordings are being made in bedrooms and basements as well as big commercial studios. Music consumers have more choices than […]


Build Back with a Strong Union

As the US and Canada begin to re-emerge from the COVID-19 crisis, the road to an economic recovery will be long and arduous. Recessions hurt low-income and middle-income families the most, dragging down wages and decimating the savings of the working class. Without targeted solutions by governments, the effects of this pandemic will be long […]


“We the Willing”

We’ve all been through a particularly rough year and a half, but the situation is improving, people are gathering, and work is coming back. It’s exhilarating to reconnect with colleagues and bandmates and perform in front of live audiences again. But there’s something else: we have to remember that the “good old days” were not so good. Many workers struggled to cover basic needs, even while working long hours providing essential services. We have an opportunity to change the narrative, to build power and create a better future. I firmly believe that musicians and music making are an essential part of achieving this generational correction.








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