Hamilton Musicians Guild Celebrates 110 Years Of Support For Musicians

Hey Musician!

Who’s got your back?
Is it the promoter?
Is it the publicist?
Is it the venue owner/operator?
Is it the press?
Is it your agent?
Is it your manager?
Is it your family and friends?
It’s your musicians union.
Believe it!

The Canadian Federation of Musicians

Building on AFM Canada’s long and successful legacy, CFM will continue furthering the particular interests and needs of professional musicians who earn their living in this country. Every day CFM helps thousands of musicians with any number of issues related to the recording and performing of their craft.  The American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada draws on the experience and strength of more than 90,000 musicians, with over 17,000 active members in Canada alone. Proudly celebrating 31 remarkable years of service, CFM is uniquely positioned to address Canadian issues, and provides vital resources for Canadian musicians, at any stage in their careers.

For more information please visit us at www.cfmusicians.org

Hamilton Musicians Guild

Here are just a few of the benefits and services you are entitled to as an AFM member:

Ian Thomas

Contracts/collective bargaining. The AFM negotiates wages and working conditions in order to maintain minimum standards for its members involved in recording, TV shows, music videos, commercials, films, video games and traveling theatrical productions. The AFM also can provide a legally binding contract for any type of engagement, and when properly executed and filed with the local union, they allow the local officer to help collect payments in the case of a default.

Pension and Health.

AFM members may earn credits toward retirement and, under certain conditions, health care each time they work. The AFM pension plan allows contributions for all working AFM members.

Insurance Programs You Can Rely On.

The AFM is here to protect you and your valuable instruments by offering a number of low-cost options.

Referral Programs/GoPro.

The AFM provides a host of referral programs and access to licensed signatory booking agents to help, including:

www.GoProMusic.com. List your band on the AFM live music referral site.

www.GoProLessons.com. List your services on the AFM music instructor referral service. This online resource enables consumers to easily locate and engage AFM member music instructors.

www.GoProHosting.com. Professional web hosting services to help you develop the perfect web site.

www.GoProAuction.com. Buy or sell the perfect instrument.

Monster Truck
(3/4 of them)

Membership Benefits of The Musicians Union in More Detail

Local and Federation sponsored booking/referral services:

Local 293 assists potential live music purchasers in the Hamilton area to find the right artist or group for their party, wedding, festival, corporate function or any other event that requires live music. In addition, the AFM provides an international on-line referral service (free of charge to all members and potential purchasers) that is quickly becoming one of the largest Internet resources of its kind.

Signatory Booking Agents:

The AFM maintains an on-line list of franchised booking agents for the US and Canada. It is also available in booklet form by contacting Local 293 or the AFM. These agents are signatories to the AFM’s Booking Agent Agreement which sets standards for legally enforceable contracts specifying negotiated fees, working conditions, and commissions.

Exclusive Member Services:

AFM GoPro Music – Your Single Source For Live Music
AFM GoPro Music on MySpace – Add us as a friend!
AFM GoPro Lessons – Learn From a Pro – Play Like a Pro
AFM GoPro Auction – Members’ Buy & Sell
AFM GoPro Hosting – Professional Web Hosting Services

Immigration Assistance:

The AFM is an international union representing professional musicians in both the United States and Canada. On behalf of its members who accept gigs across the border, the Federation works with the governments of both countries to cut through the hassle of “red tape” usually associated with obtaining work visas in either location. This assistance is available for both US and Canadian musicians. There are specialized Canadian and US forms, both formats conform to the laws of the individual countries, are easy to complete, and provide comprehensive legal protection for either single engagement or touring dates.

Claims on Default:

In the event a purchaser defaults on payment to members for an engagement, Local 293 and/or the AFM will work to resolve the dispute between the parties administratively. Should this prove unsuccessful, the member/leader will be given the opportunity to authorize the Local and/or Federation to pursue the claim through a variety of legal methods.

Pension Fund:

The American Federation of Musicians’ and Employers’ Pension Welfare Fund (Canada) was established primarily as a result of collective bargaining between employers and the American Federation of Musicians. The Plan provides: Normal Pension, Early Pension, Disability Pension and Pre-retirement Death Benefits. The Fund presently has assets in excess of $550 Million.

Negotiated Agreements:

International, national and local agreements covering all types of musical work ensure fair and timely payments as well as benefits and royalties (where applicable) for the reuse and new use of music recorded under these agreements.

Legal Contracts:

A signed AFM contract offers you protection for individual engagements, steady engagements, and traveling work. The AFM has a standard form contract that all members are entitled to use. It contains the AFM seal and when properly filled out and filed with the Local, it allows the local officer to help collect payments in the case of a default. Forms are available for download from the AFM’s and this website, or at the Local 293 office.

A.F.M. Mastercard:

The A.F.M. Mastercard offers special rates, travel insurance benefits, and a special payment provision. Contact the Local 293 office for details.

Legislative Representation:

The AFM is actively involved at the national, provincial and local levels, advocating and lobbying for legislation that benefits the lives of working musicians including public funding for the arts, “Status of the Artist”, special tax considerations for musicians, copyright, and intellectual property laws.

International Musician Free Subscription:

The International Musician is the official journal of the AFM. Published monthly and sent to all members, this informative newspaper delivers articles of current interest to professional musicians, such as educational resources, labour news, as well as audition notices and help wanted ads. The International Musician is also available online, beginning the first of each month, in the private members area of the AFM website. Members may also search online through past issues in the International Musician archives.

Equipment Insurance:

Only you know the value of your instruments and equipment. Just think of the amount of money it would take to replace them. Most homeowner’s and renter’s insurance is not enough to protect you from loss, theft, or damage on location. The AFM provides access to an “All-Risk” Musical Instrument and Equipment Insurance Plan. Your instruments and music-related equipment are protected from vandalism, breakage, water, fire, lightning, and theft up to the full replacement value. If you are employed full-time, freelance, work out of your home, or are self-employed, this insurance protects the large investment you’ve made in your equipment.

Musicians’ Liability Insurance:

This policy provides up to $1,000,000 for each occurrence and up to $2,000,000 of aggregate coverage for lawsuits arising out of bodily injury and/or damage to property of others, occurring on or off premises during your performance. Also, since no two AFM members have the same needs, the AFM Insurance is designed to fit your unique specifications. This plan offers quality, economical insurance, made available to you through AFM group buying power.

Travel Health Insurance:

When you are working or out of the Province where you reside, this policy cover all of your hospital and medical expenses by the “direct pay method.” The insurance company will pay directly to the hospital or doctor as opposed to you paying first, submitting the bill to the insurance and then being reimbursed. Coverage is on an annual basis, and although the maximum length per trip is 60 days, the number of trips per year is unlimited. This insurance coverage is available at a cost which is considerably less than policies issued by other travel health plans.

A Collective Voice:

It is only through the combined efforts of members that Local 293 and the AFM are able to better the position of musicians in our society. As a collective unit, we not only have a strong voice in collective bargaining and government lobbying, but anywhere that musicians work. As a member, you will have a voice in deciding our collective future.

Hamilton Musicians Guild
20 Jackson Street, Suite 300
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada L8P 1L2
Phone: 905-525-4040

Email: local293hmg@bellnet.ca

NOW is a great time to consider being part of the Musicians Union.


This reprint of information is distributed by GBR Publications, publisher of Greater Hamilton Musician magazine and this blog. https://hamiltonmusician.com.

Greater Hamilton Musician are not officially connected with the Hamilton Musicians Guild.

Glen Brown is a member of the Hamilton Musicians Guild who believes in the power of the collective, and the power of proper professional conduct, high performance and ethical standards that are incumbent on every member of the musicians’ community. Membership in the musicians union may be appropriate for some, depending on their career path.

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