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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Home » Recent News » Quincy Jones’ Royalty Trial Delayed


Quincy Jones’ Royalty Trial Delayed

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 Legendary producer Quincy Jones of Local 47 (Los Angeles, CA) was set to go to trial over royalties he says he’s owed from albums released after Michael Jackson’s death. A recent development means defendants Sony Music and MJJ Productions can no longer share a legal team. Until now, Sony and MJJ have shared counsel, but because this will pit the two against each other on at least one argument, Sony will have to retain separate legal counsel. 

A judge gave Jones the green light to pursue damages claims related to payment from permanent digital downloads. The producer argues he was shorted because Sony was underpaying MJJ, a song company controlled by the late artist’s estate. Jackson’s biggest hits were re-edited, and Jones says MJJ breached his contract by allowing third parties to exploit the works without first offering Jones the opportunity to perform the remixes himself. 

The issue boils down to whether Sony should have been treating those downloads as licenses instead of as sales—which would have given both Jackson’s company and Jones more money. Artists get half of net revenue from licenses, but only a 15% royalty on sales.







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