October 11, 2021 — Today, Congressman Joe Crowley and the musicFIRST coalition — the voice for fairness and equity for music creators — issued the following statement on the third anniversary of the Music Modernization Act being signed into law:
“Three years ago today, America took a huge step forward in the fight for fairness in the music industry when the Music Modernization Act (MMA) was signed into law. As the way we consume music changed drastically in the last decade, I was proud to be a cosponsor of the bill to ensure artists were compensated when their music was streamed on digital platforms.
“Unfortunately, we still have much more to do to win the fight for music fairness. While the MMA changed how we compensate artists for digital streams, it left the loophole for AM/FM radio airplay intact. For decades, radio corporations have filled their airwaves with artists’ music while escaping the responsibility of paying for this work. It’s time to end this injustice. I know my former colleagues are committed to fighting for everyday working Americans, and musicians deserve the same dignity and respect. To build on the legacy of the MMA and to truly modernize the music industry, Congress must pass the American Music Fairness Act and ensure multi-billion-dollar radio corporations pay their fair share to the music creators who make the soundtrack to our lives.”
Additionally, legendary recording artist “Soul Man” Sam Moore also issued the following statement:
“The Music Modernization Act was a historic moment for all of the American artists and music makers of all genres. I was honored to be present at the White House when the bill was signed into law. For those of us who created music and performed as recording artists prior to 1972, this law made it possible for us to finally get some of the compensation for those performances we’d created and deserved. For me and my peers and their surviving families, many of whom were struggling financially despite long and successful careers in music, this was a godsend. But the fight to make sure all American artists get everything they deserve is far from over.
The Music Modernization Act made important strides toward fairness in digital streaming, but it didn’t touch AM/FM radio — which means those big corporations, the bulk of the station owners, are continuing to get paid billions of dollars in advertising revenues from the broadcast of our performances and they aren’t paying a penny to us, the people who performed on those recordings, giving them the essence of our souls and our talents. That’s just wrong, plain and simple. I’m honored to be fighting alongside Congressman Crowley, my friends in the musicFIRST Coalition, and so many of my fellow artists to pass the American Music Fairness Act and finally right this wrong, once and for all.”
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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