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


On the Cover

Melissa Etheridge cover

Melissa Etheridge’s Musical Journey Takes Her To New Territory

At age 53, Local 47 member (Los Angeles, CA) Melissa Etheridge has newfound freedom to create and challenge herself in the modern music industry in ways that were not possible just a few years ago. The seasoned rocker with 17 Grammy nominations and two wins, just launched her first album as an independent artist. Now, the same […]

Neil Sedaka cover of IM

Neil Sedaka: Prolific Songwriter Goes Back To The Basics

Over Neil Sedaka’s long career he’s been known for writing songs that catch your ear and make you want to sing along. Hit recordings like “Calendar Girl” (1961) “Breaking Up Is Hard to Do” (two versions 1962 and 1975), “Laughter in the Rain” (1974), and “The Immigrant” (1975) made him a household name for several […]

Minnesota Orchestra Lessons Learned from a Lockout

Minnesota Orchestra Lessons Learned from a Lockout After a 16-month lockout, the longest endured by any American orchestra in history, the Minnesota Orchestra is back on stage. Music is once again filling Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis to rave reviews from both the critics, and more importantly, the audience. After resigning from his post last October, […]

Nathan East on cover of IM

Nathan East

Grammy winning Local 47 (Los Angeles, CA) member Nathan East is one of the most prolific working bassists of the last few decades. In 1984 he co-wrote the hit single “Easy Lover” with Phil Collins and Local 47 member Philip Bailey, launching a mind-boggling progression of successful, award-winning collaborations.

Al Jarreau

Al Jarreau: Ceaseless Creator of Fresh Sounds in Music

Ceaseless Creator of Fresh Sounds in Music Al Jarreau’s innovative vocal style and vibrant personality have earned him wide appeal and Grammy Awards in three different genres of music: jazz, pop, and R&B.

Deacon John Moore

Deacon John Moore,72, president of Local 174-496 (New Orleans, LA) says he’s proud that he’s managed to make a comfortable living as a musician for his entire life. He credits his versatility, business sense, and union membership for much of his success.

Genghis Barbie on cover

Genghis Barbie

The Self-Described Leading Post Post-Feminist Feminist All-Female Horn Experience Is Redefining Chamber Music Genghis Barbie’s sense of fun leaves audiences smiling, while their virtuosity leaves them speechless.

Rosanne Cash on cover of IM

Rosanne Cash

Local 802 (New York City) member Rosanne Cash laughs about how she’s “union made,” as a 35-year member of the AFM and AFTRA. She says she was encouraged to join the AFM by her father, Johnny Cash. “It was an honor to join the union; it means you are a professional. I became part of […]

Patrick Lamb on cover

Patrick Lamb

Patrick Lamb of Local 99 (Portland, OR) began his career on saxophone touring with jazz singer and pianist Diane Schuur of Local 7 (Orange County, CA) and later with Bobby Caldwell of Local 47 (Los Angeles, CA) and Local 99 member Gino Vannelli. In recent years, Lamb’s begun to focus more on his own career […]

Kathy Mattea

Kathy Mattea

Kathy Mattea of Local 257 is considered one of the all-time most successful female country musicians. In her more than three-decade career she has had around 30 top 40 country hits, won a couple Grammys, and she’s twice been named Female Vocalist of the Year by the Country Music Association. Born and raised in West […]