Congressman Joe Crowley
Congressman Joe Crowley Named Chairman Of musicFIRST Coalition
The Recording Academy and its music community allies are thrilled to announce that former Congressman Joe Crowley (D-N.Y.) will serve as Chairman of musicFIRST, a coalition that fights for fairness and equity for music creators.
In his new role, Congressman Crowley will lead the charge to secure fair compensation for all music creators, including overseeing Capitol Hill efforts to enact legislation to finally get artists paid when their music is played on FM/AM radio stations.
"Congressman Crowley is a longtime advocate for music creators, a fact recognized as a past honoree of our annual GRAMMYs on the Hill Awards," Daryl P. Friedman, Chief Advocacy Officer at the Recording Academy, said in a statement. "His tireless support for artists and understanding of crucial parity issues uniquely position him in this ongoing fight for fairness. We look forward to working together once again on behalf of music creators across the country."
Back in March 2016, the Recording Academy honored Congressman Crowley, along with then-Congressman Thomas Rooney (R-Fla.) and the Zac Brown Band, at the GRAMMYs On The Hill Awards. Crowley was the lead sponsor of the Allocation for Music Producers (AMP) Act in the House of Representatives. The AMP Act, which became law in 2018 as part of the Music Modernization Act, gives studio professionals recognition in federal copyright law for the first time in U.S. history.
The musicFIRST Coalition, which counts the Academy, the American Federation of Musicians, SAG-AFTRA, SoundExchange, and others as members, formed under a simple precept: To ensure that music creators are compensated whenever their work is played. When it comes to radio, the opposite is true. Big Radio has never compensated performers and recording artists while earning billions in advertising revenue off their backs.
One Trojan Horse for this destructive pattern has been the Local Radio Freedom Act (LRFA). The innocuous sounding bill implies that the act promotes broadcast localism, but it is in fact something very different. In actuality, the non-binding resolution, which is pushed by conglomerates like iHeart Radio and their well-financed lobbyists at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), hurts creators by placing Congress on the other side of the fulcrum.
By a 2-1 margin, Americans believe it's unfair that artists are not paid when their music is played on traditional radio,according to a recent national survey. The poll found that less than a quarter of Americans turn to AM/FM radio to discover new music and unmasked the cold reality that most Americans don't know that artists aren't being paid when traditional radio plays their music. The same number (57%) reported that they did know that artists receive payment when their music is played on streaming services like Spotify and SiriusXM.
Now's the time to give all music creators their fair share, and the Recording Academy believes that Congressman Crowley is the man to spearhead this creator-first mission.