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Where can you find royalty free music at no charge? Many sites on the web offer royalty free music with a price tag. But here I have compiled a list of sites with royalty free music that is actually free. There are actually quite a few artists that offer their music under the Creative Commons License, it is sometimes just hard to find them through all the sites that ask a lot of money to use one song.
Some artists allow you to use their music in commercial
productions whereas others only allow you to use their music
in personal productions. So look at the license agreement
carefully. Most music is licensed under Attribution,
so in your production you should credit the author of the
music. If it is a slideshow or a video presentation then you
should include a credit to the artist such as:
My recommendation is that whether you use an artist's song in a non-commercial way (for a personal web page, a personal slideshow, etc) or in a commercial way (for a TV commercial, film festival, movie, etc.) that you contact the artist and let them know how you are using their music. It is great that they allow you to use their music at no cost to you.
My second recommendation is that if you use an artist's music and it actually makes your web site, podcast, slideshow, video presentation, etc better or more popular and you continue to use their song, then I suggest making a donation to the artist. Based on other's recommended donation amounts, I suggest that you send the artist at least $5 for each song that you use.
Royalty Free Music Links
At this website Kevin MacLeod offers his royalty free music creations under the Creative Commons License. There are many different types of instrumental music at this site.
pacdv offers a few instrumentals for you to use royalty free. They just ask that you mention "Music by www.pacdv.com/sounds/" in your credits.
Musopen is an online music library of copyright free (public domain) music. At Musopen they obtain recordings of public domain music that have no copyrights so that visitors may listen, re-use, or in any way enjoy music. Most of the music is of classical piano or symphony pieces.
I recommend that you sign up with a free account at www.soundclick.com to take full advantage of its many differnent music artsists and genres. To find royalty free music at no charge under the Creative Commons License click on the soundclick link above and then change License Type to Creative Commons (Free), select the Genre and click go.
YouTube now offers a good selection of free music that you may use in your videos and you can monetize the video on YouTube as well.
Derek Audette offers his royalty free music under the Creative Commons License. Most of these are instrumental pieces that are either dark, moody, or hard driving.
This site contains recordings of songs that were published prior to 1922 and are now in the public domain which means the public is free to copy and use the works in any way.
This website offers a collection of music from a variety of artists and genres under the Creative Commons License. In the left hand menu click on artists or genres.
Open Music Archive offers recordings of songs that are over 50 years old so their copyright has expired in the UK so the recordings have become Public Domain. However, if you are from another country other than the UK then the recordings may not be Public Domain yet. See the FAQ for more information.
This Audio Archive contains free recordings of many popular bands. These are usually recordings of live performances. The bands that allow their live concerts to be recorded and traded are known as Trade Friendly Bands. For a list of bands that are Trade Friendly and to view their policies see Trade-Friendly Band Information and Furthurnet.org Band List. The FAQ page and the details page make it clear that these recordings can only be used for non-commercial purposes.
Music Revolution has only 40 tracks available for free download. They ask that you credit them somewhere in your website.
Bensound has a few repetitive music tracks that you can use in your multimedia projects as long as you credit the bensound.com website according to the Creative Commons Attribution licence.
Free Music Clips
InernetAudioGuy.com usually sells royalty free audio tracks for a price but they also offer a few instrumental 30 second samples that you can use for free for anything you want.
Using Non-Royalty Free Music
If you already found a piece of music from a professional artist that you want to use in your film or other production then go to http://www.ascap.com/filmtv/faq.html to find out how to contact the copyright owner (usually the publisher) and acquire the appropriate license.
Last updated on February 27, 2017
Created on October 16, 2007