As you are aware, touring is an important element of a professional musician's career. As more independent Canadian artists emerge onto the global music scene, the desire to tour the United States grows. However, this has become increasingly difficult and expensive. In order for Canadian artists to tour the United States, they must apply for and be granted a "P2 Visa” by the US government.
With the prohibitive costs of P2's, many Canadian musicians find they are increasingly unable to tour in America. Add to all this the 30% tax the IRS withholds from the gross income of the Canadian group, and touring quickly becomes a financial impossibility for many artists.
Up until June 25th, 2014, American musicians planning to tour Canada had similar challenges. In response to a petition much like this one, the Canadian government has since done away with prohibitive international musician fees.
With free trade agreements like N.A.F.T.A. in place, there is no need to maintain this barrier against Canadian artists.
The petition has over 6,000 signatures in place. It will be delivered to the Dept. of Homeland Security with the hope that it will have grown enough that the American government reciprocates, and does away with the high-cost P2 in favor of an artist-friendly fee similar to what Canada has put in place.
Please share this and help make it easier for Canadian artists to tour the United States.
-Greg Karlowitsch (Season of Mist)