Finding music on the internet is a no brainer. Everything is practically at the end of your fingertips. Finding FREE music is just as easy, they number in the hundreds of thousands.
How can you be sure that the free music files you find are truly legal to download? You can’t, of course. It all just becomes a matter of whether you trust the websites from which you downloaded them. These websites go by the reputation they have built (and earned) in the online music industry over the years. Using these websites could actually be the easiest way to find free and legal music on the internet, and is first on our list.
1. Look for (industry)-trusted websites that have the reputation for providing legit links to FREE and LEGAL music sources.
There are many sites that offer this service. Listed below are just some of the more popular ones.
- Jamendo is a music only download site. All artists featured here have licensed their work through (CCL) Creative Commons License. The site allows and encourages donations from users to support the artists.
- YouTorrent is one of the major legal torrent download sites. All music, books, movies, anime’ games, TV shows, software and pictures on the site are free and legal to download.
- 3hive Offers nothing but MP3s. They have direct links with official labels and artists who allow samples of their music to be downloaded for free as an alternative form of promoting their albums and upcoming live shows.
- bt.etree.org features “trade friendly” artists and their own recordings of live concerts. The site encourages users who enjoy the featured music to support the new artists by buying their CDs or watching them perform live.
- Legit Torrents offers music downloads in MP3, Flac and Ogg format. It has over 1,800 LEGAL links for music, games, movies, software apps, books and anime’.
- itsfreedownloads gives you a list of all recent iTunes free downloads. If you are unable to regularly check out the iTunes store, then this website is the next best thing, if not better.
2. Use Music Blog-aggregator Sites
Yes, there are actually websites that do nothing but scan the internet for blogs. There are news blogs, so there are news blog aggregators. There are technology blogs, so there are technology blog aggregators. And of course there are music blog aggregators for the thousands of music blogs on the internet. An MP3 blog aggregator will filter the MP3 blogs into a searchable database of MP3s. You usually can search according to artist name or song.
Music Blog aggregators include:
3. Use Retail MP3 Sites
Searching for free music in retail MP3 sites can be a very satisfying “shopping experience”. These sites sell some and give some (for free). They always have free tracks that are actually provided by the artists, the major labels and/or distributors to promote their new releases. Some of the best known sites are:
- iTunes is still the world’s top online music store. They regularly feature free music (and more) for download for a limited period.
- Purevolume allows the contributing artists themselves to choose which of their featured songs are made available for download. This site is a well-recognized entity in the online music world, having received recognition from the likes of The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal to name a few.
- eMusic is an online distribution service much like iTunes. They give free sample downloads. Without signing up, users can have a free trial of eMusic’s service and be able to download and keep 25 free tracks.
- Soundclick is a very good site for original music artists who want to promote their work. It is a leading free music community that features signed and unsigned bands. MP3s (and a lot of other stuff) are offered free for download.
4. Look for Membership MP3 Services
Some websites double as paid music download services and free legal music downloads. You may or may not choose to become a member because these sites often have a limited free trial period. During the trial period, you can get well acquainted with their services and enjoy their vast music collections.
If you decide to become a member for a very minimal monthly subscription fee, you are allowed unlimited downloads, which is practically equivalent to getting all the music for free. Very few of these sites still charge per download, and if they do, it’s very cheap. Those sites that still do charge per download often treat members to plenty of download freebies.
- MP3 Elevation – offers a NO limits download policy. All you have to pay is their very minimal monthly subscription fee, and you will have access to their extensive collection of music spanning many genres.
- Rhapsody – offers 2 membership plans and 14 day free trial period within which time you may cancel anytime at no commitment. With their staggering 12 million + songs, you will definitely need more than 14 days.
- iMesh – is approved by the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America). It is the longest running website of its kind and has a music library of some 15 million tracks. They also offer non-copyrighted music for free download.
5. Look for free downloads when you purchase a track or an album
These sites (only 1 example shown below) may or may not require registration, but often give additional freebies to members.
- Nickodemus – offers 1 or 2 exclusive bonus tracks if you purchase an album they are currently featuring. You will also get an immediate download of all digital tracks including the album artwork sent to you via a confirmation email containing the download link. They will ship CD orders within 7 business days.
6. Look for sign-up bonuses when you register for an online music service
Paid music service are doing very well right alongside all the hundreds of other sites that offer totally free downloads. One reason could be because of the strict copyright laws that people do not wish to violate, considering that the prices offered by these sites are actually very good deals. Another reason could be that these sites do offer their own freebies.
- justmusicstore – offers 1 MP3 download upon registration. They have a collection of over 1.8M tracks available for all members.
- classicsonline.com – gives not 1 but 5 tracks for free upon registration. All members also have a chance to avail of complimentary track per week. They have an 800,000 track-catalog. If you choose not to become a member, you can still choose to be a subscriber and get access to unlimited streaming.
- allofmp3tunes.com – not only offers a free MP3 upon registration, they also give 10 free releases daily to all members who maintain a $20 balance.
7. Download directly from the official websites of the artists or the independent band.
Independent musicians, bands and even established artists (only 1 sample shown below) often offer free music for download from their websites. They typically do this on a sampling basis or for a limited period only to promote a new song, a new album or an upcoming show, concert or even film. Bookmark their websites and visit them regularly for freebies.
- ROJO – is a free album by talented R&B songstress Rochelle Jordan fromToronto.
There are many ways of finding free and legal music online. Some of these ways need no deep contemplation, but some can get a little involved, needing a little creativity and perhaps a lot of patience from you. Whatever way you choose to take, you are sure to find what you are looking for. You need not content yourself with downloads of poor audio quality from sites that have questionable credentials at best.
Perhaps you have your own very unique way of finding these free music treasures. Care to share?