Brad Paisley performing at the 2013 CMA Music Festival.

All CMA Award nominees are eligible for an email service that sends blasts to all members, enabling them to campaign for their nominees and court voters. So now that you’re sold on becoming a member, how can you make it happen? There are two main ways—you can join as an individual or as an organization as long as you fall into one of the 17 categories listed, such as composer, media, talent agent, touring personnel and studio engineer. If the primary source of your income comes from the country music industry, you’re eligible for individual membership. You can also apply for organizational membership through your company, and can choose from three levels—bronze, silver and gold. Annual dues are $200, $500 and $1,250, respectively. The higher the membership tier is, the greater the rewards. There’s also a patron organizational membership available for companies that aren’t directly and substantially involved in the country music industry but support the genre. The CMA has more than 7,000 members involved in country music in 40 countries. Since it was launched in 1958, the CMA has continued its mission of promoting country music. The organization showcases the industry’s top talent through three impressive TV properties—the CMA Awards, the CMA Music Festival special “Country’s Night to Rock” and the annual “CMA Country Christmas” show. It also spotlights the songwriting community through a series of showcases in venues around the country and in the United Kingdom. By constantly developing new ways to find fans in new markets, while hitting its hardcore base with the greatest impact, the CMA has long been the hub of country music, something its members find invaluable.

How To Join

Membership Has Its Benefits
The greatest perk of joining the Country Music Assn. is getting to vote for and attend the annual CMA Awards show—of course. But membership in the 55-year-old organization does have many other privileges. Just ask John Esposito, president/ CEO of Warner Bros. Nashville and secretary/treasurer of the CMA board of directors
By Deborah Evans Price

What Yo u G e t

One of the biggest advantages is access to the CMA’s market research. “There is wonderful data available to members to find ways to market their music,” Esposito says. “A mission of ours is to expand our promotion of that so people will take greater advantage of it. We are keeping a pretty good repository of who the country consumer is, and it’s helpful information.” CMA members also receive a subscription to CMA Close Up, the organization’s magazine, as well as access to the CMA directory, a comprehensive guide that includes country radio stations, syndicators, record labels, managers, booking agents and publicists. In addition to the printed directory, members have exclusive access to info on, which is updated daily. Insurance is another main draw, whether of the health or musical-instrument variety. Affordable health-care options are available through or at My.CMAWorld. com, by clicking on the CMA Instrumental Healthcare link. Meanwhile, Clarion Musical Instrument Insurance offers members a price break. Check out or call 800-848-2534 to get a quote. Other companies offering discounts are American Airlines and Billboard. Further membership benefits include two four-day passes to the CMA Music Festival for country radio stations to use in listener promotions. The CMA also helps members network by providing a link to its site from CMA’s official website,, and by allowing organizational members to use the special CMA Organizational Member Logo on their site or social network.
C M A Awa r d s 2013
voter guide


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9/27/13 6:17 PM

dipIero: courtesy of the cma; kelley: kristen barlowe; schlapman: Williams + Hirakawa

paisley: Jon LeMay/abc

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