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.
February 1, 2016Sam Folio - former AFM International Secretary-Treasurer
As I sit to write my monthly column, I generally wait for inspiration. Last month I said goodbye to my Assistant Secretary and COO Lew Mancini—it’s hard to replace 40 years of wisdom.
I recall in the ’80s the International Musician was done in-house. I was involved as an IEB member and I served on the editorial board of the paper. In 2005, when I was elected to the position of Secretary-Treasurer I assumed the position of IM publisher and took a much more active role in the magazine.
When the IM started it was old-fashioned newsprint black and white, resembling a Pennysaver paper you find in front of the local grocery store. As you have seen, the paper is now slick, color, and online—a true award-winner and model for our affiliate locals.
None of this could have been accomplished without Managing Editor Antoinette Follett, who has been putting this publication together for almost 16 years.
The inspiration for this column came a few minutes ago when I received word that Antoinette was leaving to take a position with a local nonprofit in her hometown. However, as she transitions, she will be making sure the minutes at the convention and all other print publications that she does so well are still spot on perfect. We wish her all the best as she made my job much easier with her poised, calm way of approaching problems and managing people. Our publication was never late, always professional, and something that AFM members cherish and look forward to each month. Antoinette, we will miss you and we wish you the best!
I would like to finish my column by introducing our new managing editor, Cherie Yurco. Cherie has been editing and writing for the IM, alongside Antoinette, for 12 years. She has helped me on several projects at the IM and we get along famously. (It is important for editors and publishers to have harmony.)
We also welcomed Advertising Sales Director Karen Godgart in September 2015. I look forward with great anticipation to even greater things ahead for the International Musician as we start the new year on the solid foundation Antoinette has left for us.