History of AFTM


Austin Friends of Traditional Music (AFTM) has its origins in the autumn of 1974 when a group of musicians gathered in an Austin living room with a special purpose in mind: to produce a traditional music convention with competition for pickers and singers. By November of that year, the first convention was held. It was financed on a shoestring budget and the only publicity was free publicity. And its producers wondered if there would be enough interest for the convention to last until noon. But by midnight, their fears had dissolved. Living room pickers from all over the area attended, competed, and got to know each other and AFTM was on its way.

AFTM is a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to traditional music. We present music festivals highlighting the central Texas music community and featuring local, national, and international folk musicians. The Austin String Band Festival, held the 3rd weekend in October, is centered on traditional string bands and includes a variety of workshops with the purpose of passing along traditional music to the next generation of enthusiastic musicians.  AFTM serves as an educational and informative resource through its scholarships, newsletter, and web page. We also host house concerts, jam sessions, and dances.

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