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 » Electronic Media Services » Top 10 Most Important Reasons Why You Should Record Under AFM Agreements

Top 10 Most Important Reasons Why You Should Record Under AFM Agreements


In summary, and with apologies to David Letterman, the EMSD staff have compiled the Top 10 most important reasons why you should record under AFM agreements:

10. Standard wagesYou are guaranteed to receive at least the minimum standards for your services.

9. Doubling and overdubs—In addition to the wage payments, the employer is required to make payments for doubling and overdub services.

8.  Foreign use—If you perform services in the production of a show produced under most of the AFM’s television agreements, aside from the payment due to you for your original services, if the program is broadcast overseas, you will receive additional payments.

7. DVD paymentsIf the program is released into DVD format, you will be entitled to additional payments that continue to accrue based on the gross receipts.

6. Pension fund contributionThe employer is required to make a pension fund contribution on your behalf, which puts your session work into the system.

5. Health and welfare fund contributionThe employer is required to make a health and welfare contribution, either to the health plan of your local (if it has one), or directly to you.

4. Special payments fundIf you perform services on session(s) for a sound recording, you are guaranteed to receive payments from the Sound Recording Special Payments Fund for the next five years.

3. Secondary markets fundUnder the Basic Theatrical Motion Picture and Television Film Labor Agreements you will qualify for distributions from the Film Musicians Secondary Markets Fund, should the film be released to outlets such as pay cable TV or the home video market.

2. Reuse—Under the Commercial Announcements Agreement you will receive periodic reuse payments for any new cycles that commercial(s) enter into.

And the number 1 reason to record AFM:

New useIf you perform services under an AFM agreement and your product is licensed for use in another medium, such as a theatrical motion picture, television film, or commercial announcement, you will be entitled to additional payments as if you had performed the work under that agreement.


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