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The American Association of Independent Music (A2IM) will celebrate its third anniversary this July 4, 2008 in conjunction with Independent's Day 2008, a global event spotlighting the importance of independent music. A2IM, the non-profit, member-run advocacy organization is devoted to improving the business health of independent labels, promoting equity, fairness, and transparency for the independent music label community. With over 300 member companies, A2IM is the definitive resource for opinions and quotes for coverage when seeking the independent label perspective regarding developments in the music industry.

From Elvis to Evanescence, from Otis Redding to Run DMC, the impact independent music has had on the music industry is enormous and A2IM is its main advocate. In 2007, independent music labels represented over 30% of music sales and 39% of non-terrestrial radio airplay (web radio, satellite radio, cable services, etc.). In light of these figures and operating under the assertion that fans actively seek out independent music, A2IM is committed to achieving a level playing field for indies, promoting commerce opportunities and providing services such as networking prospects, education, and general advice to independent labels at every level. "The music industry finds itself at a crossroads," states A2IM President Rich Bengloff. "With physical sales diminishing while digital music sales grow both online and in the mobile marketplace, A2IM has become a strong voice for independent labels in meetings with the major labels, artists and their representatives, and third parties who distribute and market our music."

Contrary to Nielsen SoundScan reporting which is based upon distributors, A2IM defines independent labels as, and its membership is comprised of, independent music companies who control their own masters. They may be distributed by the four music groups known as the majors, via the five independent distributors owned by major labels, by independently owned distribution companies, or self distributed, but they are independently controlled. Now more than ever, as the old, traditional barriers to entry within the music industry continue to fall, independent labels are able to compete at the highest levels of the music industry and seek fair and equitable treatment in the marketplace.

During the weekend of July 4 - 6, A2IM will join with the World Independent Network (W.I.N.) for Independent's Day 2008. With 14 independent trade organizations participating from around the world, Independent's Day 2008 will feature a number of promotional activities, the commercial release of a limited edition digital compilation album, and an eBay auction of rare and special paraphernalia from independent labels and artists. This celebration of independent music will underscore the importance of independent labels. All proceeds from the event will be distributed to existing and new and developing non-profit independent label trade organizations and the non-profit, MusiCares-an organization devoted to providing assistance to artists facing financial hardships and music education.

A2IM's distinguished board of directors is comprised of a diverse group of the music labels, in terms of label sizes, genres of music and geographic locations, currently: Glen Barros of Concord Music Group, Lesley Bleakley of Beggars Group, Bruce Iglauer of Alligator Records, Doug Keogh of Roadrunner Records, Glenn Morrow of Bar/None Records, Molly Neuman of Lookout! Records, Portia Sabin of Kill Rock Stars, Thomas Silverman of Tommy Boy Records, and Amaechi Uzoigwe of Definitive Jux.

For press inquiries pertaining to A2IM, please contact Nick Baily (nbaily@shorefire.com) or Will Dukes (wdukes@shorefire.com) at Shore Fire Media - 718.522.7171. For more information about A2IM, please contact Rich Bengloff (President; rich.bengloff@a2im.org) or Jim Mahoney (VP, Membership; jim.mahoney@a2im.org) at A2IM - 212 937 8975.

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