AFM President Clarifies Engineer Position

As President of the Nashville Musicians Association, AFM Local 257, I must clarify the statements made in last Friday’s article in MusicRow regarding engineers joining the Musicians Union. It was premature to say that engineers can “now sign the card on recording sessions.” What should have been said is that we were “considering the possibility of allowing engineers to work under Union recording Agreements when applicable.” This topic is not new and has been discussed with engineers, the AES, and Local 257 members, for quite some time, but no new formal agreement or “understanding” exists, as was stated in Friday’s article.

While it is clear that engineers have the right to join the AFM, when it comes to signing the card as an engineer on a recording session, things are not so simple. After speaking with AFM counsel this morning, it has come to my attention that there are legal obstacles to this concept that cannot be overcome at this time. The 6 p.m. Tuesday meeting was intended to be for an informational discussion, not a formal invitation for engineers to join the AFM as was implied, nor is it intended to be a full scale debate on the topic. I regret any confusion that this incorrect description of where we are in this process may have caused.

The engineer community in Nashville is an important part of our creative process, and Local 257 respects them and the work they do. As we look towards the future, we hope that the positive, constructive dialogue we have had with all segments of the Nashville music community about our collective goals will continue. Local 257 is proud to be the home of “the finest musicians in the world,” and we will continue our mission to represent “Music City” at the highest level possible.

Dave Pomeroy
President, Nashville Musicians Association, AFM Local 257

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David M. Ross has been covering Nashville's music industry for over 25 years. [email protected]

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