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.
May 1, 2017IM -
by Robin Moir, Secretary-Treasurer of Local 180 (Ottawa, ON)
The week leading up to the April 2 JUNO Awards was exciting here in Ottawa. Not only were we able to sign a first-time, Canada-wide, three-year deal with CARAS for a CFM JUNO Agreement, but we were able to join in the fun of a city jam-packed with Canadian talent and fans! In all previous years, the agreement was signed year-to-year and negotiated between CARAS and the local of jurisdiction for the year’s event.
Nightclubs and bars were rockin’. There was a JUNO Cup Jam March 30. This year’s JUNO Songwriters’ Circle was hosted by 12-time JUNO Award winner and Local 180 (Ottawa, ON) member Bruce Cockburn, live at the National Arts Center April 2.
The 2017 JUNO Allan Waters Humanitarian Award went to Canadian singer-songwriter, educator, activist, and humanitarian Buffy Sainte-Marie, Ph.D., a member of Local 802 (New York City).
Ottawa also had something special planned for Sainte-Marie. The Speaker of the Senate, the Honourable George J. Furey Q.C., the Honourable Marilou McPhedran C.M., the Honourable Lillian Eva Dyck, the Honourable Sandra M. Lovelace Nicholas C.M., and the Honourable Murray Sinclair invited guests and members of Local 180 to a Senate event called “Celebration of the Power of Music,” honouring Sainte-Marie.
It was a remarkable occasion—the first time in the history of the Senate that music was celebrated. The first part of Sainte-Marie’s speech was dedicated to an initiative that the CFM has been lobbying for with the air transportation industry: carry-on allowances for musical instruments.
We were delighted to welcome such a powerful advocate for such an essential issue to our industry. We were also pleased to meet and greet many who believe, as we do, that the time has come for all air transportation corporations to offer musicians instrument carry-on opportunities.
“Minister of Transport Marc Garneau’s office is currently juggling a new passenger bill of rights, which we believe will address the issue of musicians travelling on airlines with musical instruments. We are so grateful to Sainte-Marie for her unsolicited support,” explains AFM International Representative from Canada Allistair Elliott. “We are committed to seeing this issue through to the end as we represent the interest of all musicians in Canada.”
Last but not least, Local 180 has been lucky to welcome Jacob Dioszghy as an intern. Dioszghy is a singer-songwriter and producer who is planning to study law. He is First Nations, like Sainte-Marie. Dioszghy’s mother was thrilled to discover he would have the opportunity to share in this wonderful event. Little did she guess that he would have a photo taken with one of her all-time favourite First Nations artists: Buffy Sainte-Marie.