Senator Ben Ray Lujan (D-NM) meets with Recording Academy members from New Mexico
A Look At The Meet Your Music Maker Program: Here's How Lawmakers & Academy Members Joined Together
Back in February, the Recording Academy's Advocacy department launched the Meet Your Music Maker Program, which served as an opportunity for Academy members to meet freshmen lawmakers newly elected to the 117th Congress over Zoom.
This week, Meet Your Music Maker wraps up after six months, but the ripple effect of these conversations is bound to be felt for a while. In that span, Academy members from the Atlanta, Chicago, Florida, Los Angeles, Memphis, Nashville, New York, San Francisco, and Texas chapters met with more than 30 freshmen representatives and senators from their respective chapter footprints.
Meet Your Music Makers goes out with a bang this week as members of the Texas Chapter meet with newly elected lawmakers and their staff. These Zoom calls haven't been mere meet-and-greets or blithe networking opportunities—they revealed real priorities of music creators to the people who have the power to engender authentic change.
Within these Zoom conferences, music creators highlighted the local music community in these lawmaker's districts and states. This is important because these new lawmakers most likely did not seek office because of music issues, and might be unaware of the local importance in their district or state, let alone the power and oversight Congress has over the music industry.
Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX) meets with the Academy’s Texas Chapter.
These meetings also sought to garner support for the Academy's advocacy priorities in the 117th Congress. These include the HITS (Help Independent Tracks Succeed) Act the American Music Fairness Act and educating lawmakers on the numerous flaws and inaccuracies with the anti-artist Local Radio Freedom Act.
Also on the docket was a round of COVID-19 relief for embattled music professionals. This proved successful with the March enactment of the American Rescue Plan that extended unemployment programs for many music creators, along with subsequent improvements to programs like the Paycheck Protection Program.
On top of all that, these meetings laid the foundation for constructive relationships with the new lawmakers, including eventual in-person follow-ups during the Academy's widely popular District Advocate grassroots day.
It's the Recording Academy's sincere hope and conviction that these meetings will prove fruitful for all music creators and professionals in tangible ways.
Keep an eye on our Advocacy page for more exciting developments as we continue our alliances with those who can help enact what the Recording Academy is here to do: Support all music creators.