‘Why we joined the union’

Volume 116, No. 12December, 2016

Scott V. Steyer

scott-steyerI’ve been a committed drummer and percussionist since age ten, spanning a 50-plus-year career in the music industry. Playing clubs and shows by age 14, I broke into the legendary Woodstock music community in the late 1960s and early 70s. I joined what was then AFM Local 215 (which at the time covered the Kingston, NY area) and travelled in the most gifted circles of a generation. I relocated to Boston to study at the Berklee College of Music, returning to the Catskills to spend several years working in show bands in major resorts throughout the region. As the hotels faded I gravitated to Manhattan, always my favorite place on the planet. Studio work, shows and touring followed, but I returned upstate to raise my family. When my local merged with an adjacent territory in 2012 due to membership decline and financial issues, I decided to transfer to the local I had always aspired to join Local 802. Many of my peers in the Woodstock area are longtime members and hope to resume performing and teaching in NYC. Currently I work in several jazz projects upstate, one of my favorites being with the incredible trumpeter Chris Pasin on a Sunday afternoon jazz brunch. I am proud to be a union member and grateful for the support, promotion and security it provides. The AFM sets a standard for success for serious musicians.