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Musical Artists Converge On Washington To Demand Music Fairness

28 April 2022

Sofia Carson, Yolanda Adams, Ledisi and more call on Congress to pass the American Music Fairness Act — and the American people agree

Washington, DC, April 28, 2022 – musicFIRST – the voice for fairness and equity for music creators – celebrated the efforts of more than a dozen artists and music creators who traveled to the Nation’s Capital this week to meet with lawmakers and advocate for the bipartisan American Music Fairness Act.

The delegation of artists — organized by The Recording Academy — includes:

Actress and singer Sofia Carson
Songwriting and production duo Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis
Gospel artist Yolanda Adams
Singer, songwriter and producer Ledisi
Composer, pianist, songwriter and singer Emily Bear
A cappella gospel sextet Take 6
Singer and songwriter Lupita Infante
Singer and songwriter Emily Warren
Singer and songwriter Autumn Rowe
Songwriter Whitney Phillips
Singer, composer, actress and playwright Nnenna Freelon

The visiting artists participated in The Recording Academy’s 2022 GRAMMYs on the Hill event on Wednesday evening, and plan to spend Thursday meeting with legislators from both sides of the aisle to convey the importance of the American Music Fairness Act. The bipartisan legislation, which was introduced by Reps. Ted Deutch (D-FL) and Darrell Issa (R-CA), would require broadcasters to finally compensate artists when their songs are played on AM/FM radio.

“For too long, a handful of Big Radio corporations have used an antiquated loophole to justify refusing to pay a penny to the artists whose music makes their billion-dollar businesses possible,” said Congressman Joe Crowley, Chairman of the musicFIRST Coalition. “We want to send a heartfelt thanks to the many artists who convened in Washington this week to call for an end to this injustice. Their efforts are a testament to the strong momentum behind the American Music Fairness Act, and we look forward to seeing it passed into law this year.”

Currently picking up steam in the U.S. House of Representatives, the American Music Fairness Act would require large corporate broadcasters to pay a performance royalty when they play music on their AM/FM radio stations — just like digital and streaming platforms already do. Notably, the bill also includes strong protections for local radio that would allow small, college and non-commercial stations to pay less than $2 per day for unlimited music.

An overwhelming majority of Americans stand with artists in the fight for music fairness. A new national poll commissioned by musicFIRST found that 61% say that it’s unfair that artists don’t get paid when their songs get played, while only 18% say it is fair — a greater than 3-to-1 margin. Similarly, 70% said they support Congress taking action to address this injustice by passing legislation like the American Music Fairness Act, compared to only 14% opposed.

For more information on musicFIRST and its fight for music fairness, please visit musicfirstcoalition.org.

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About musicFIRST
musicFIRST works to ensure music creators get fair pay for their work on all platforms and wherever and however it is played. We rally the people and organizations who make and love music to end the broken status quo that allows AM/FM to use any song ever recorded without paying its performers a dime. And to stand up for fair pay on digital radio — and whatever comes next.

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