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


Home » Recent News » Music Education Benefits Teenage Students

Music Education Benefits Teenage Students


There have been many studies indicating the positive impact that learning music can have on the cognitive abilities of young children. A new study from a research team led by Nina Kraus of Northwestern University, which was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, shows that music training, even when begun in the adolescent years, has significant cognitive, emotional, and behavioral benefits for students.

They followed a group of teenage students from low-income neighborhoods around Chicago and tested them just before their freshman year and during their senior years. Nineteen of the students were engaged in musical training and 21 of the students participated in Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps. Testing focused on language skills and sounds. The music group that studied music showed more rapid maturation in the brain’s response to sound and heightened brain sensitivity to sound details, compared to those enrolled in JROTC.

These results could prove valuable when evaluating the need for public school music programs, which are increasingly begun at a later age due to budget cuts.

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