Where can you get GOOD royalty free music for your YouTube video? I get asked that questions all the time so I wanted to do a quick blog and video with Benji sharing some of the sites we use the most as well as some other options worth checking out – these are the best royalty free music sites in my opinion. If you know of great sites that are not on the list, please post them in the comments on the YouTube video HERE.
Disclaimer: Neither Benji or I are lawyers or experts in copyright or music licencing law. Use the following advice at your own risk.
Royalty Free Music For YouTube Videos?
PAID Royalty Free Music Site
1. Audio Jungle
I use Audio Jungle alot for music for commercial client work, wedding videos and videos that will be monetized on YouTube. The music and prices are very good! Here is a video I did for a DJ Company with an ‘electronic/chill’ song from Audio Jungle.
Example: In this video I used both music and b-roll clips from Audio Jungle and Video Hive.
Click HERE to check out royalty free songs and sound effects on Audio Jungle.
2. Amazon MP3
I have downloaded a lot of “Royalty Free Music” from Amazon.com. You can get some KILLER full albums of music for under 10 bucks, or single songs for 99 cents. Technically you are not actually purchasing a licence to use the songs, your just purchasing the songs themselves. However, I have used some of these songs in a few different contexts and have never had any trouble with them.
One of the best albums I’ve downloaded: Various Full True Royalties Free Song (From Chillout to Techno Free Use Music Album)
Also, I have gotten a lot of Royalty Free Sound Effects from Amazon.com including airplane noises, street noise, church bells, police sirens, construction work and other sound effects to enhance videos. I always check Amazon for good royalty free sound effects. In this video (you’ll noticed a lot of sound effects in it), the music was created by our friend Spencer Hirst and the sound effects were created by us or downloaded from sites like Amazon.
3. The Music Bed
The Music Bed is probably the coolest site to get royalty free music right now. The music is amazing and perfect for promo videos and story videos that just have ‘that cool vibe’ (you know the vibe I’m talking about). The interface for finding music is user friendly and it doesn’t take long to find the perfect song.
I did this wedding video for Benji and Judy from ItsJudyTime with a ‘hipster romantic’ song from The Music Bed and a ‘upbeat indie song’ in this conference promo video.
Check out the songs for your videos on The Music Bed.
4. Prime Loops
Prime Loops is an audio production company based in London, UK and they don’t create “Royalty Free Music” per se, but you can create your own with the loop packs if you have some audio editing skills.
I used some cool R&B Dance Music and Guitar stuff in this conference recap video and this wedding video here.
The music at JewelBeat isn’t that great, but it’s super cheap and legit for videos being used for commercial use. I used a cool western song in this video blog and some techno/electronic music in this video blog here.
6. iStock Audio
I don’t think I have ever purchased a song from here (I have purchased pictures and video clips). However, I always download the free songs and sound effects when they post them.
A Few Other Royalty Free Music Paid Options:
This site used to be called WithEtiquette. It is really cool like the Music Bed for your really cool videos. The Still Motion crew recommends this site, and the two songs in this Hillsong NYC Launch video are from this site.
Sometimes Pond5 gives away HUGE PACKS of free video clips, pictures, music and sound effects. I always download those packs and have used the content from time to time. Get on their email list to get notified when they give away the free packs.
If you need a lot of royalty free music for a good price, this is a great site.
I just stumbled over this – the music is legit and premium songs are affordable and high quality.
Vimeo Music Store
I have yet to download any music from the Vimeo Music Store, but it sounds great and is very affordable.
Pro Scores and Designer Sound FX – Video Copilot
FREE Royalty Free Music Sites
Here are a few sites I learned about from my friend Tim Schmoyer. When looking for royalty free music, search for “creative commons music.” HERE is a definition of what creative commons is, as well as a few other sites to check out:
Getting PERMISSION from Artists to Use Music
The primary way we have gotten music for THiNK International videos is from relationships and permission from independent artists. Around 2005 I just started reaching out to artists and indie labels via email (and eventually using social media as well) and asking for permission to use their music in our church video announcements in exchange for citing and promoting them.
Here are a few tips doing this successfully:
1. The artist/label needs to be independent (don’t email Pharrell Williams asking for “free” rights to use “Happy”… it won’t work).
2. Focus on how and where you are going to promote the artist and their music . You could mention them in the video credits, YouTube description and shout outs on Facebook and Twitter.
3. Consider the “Brand Alignment” of the music with your organization.
4. Write an email and send it to them.
5. Put all of your “Yes” responses in an email folder for your records.
7. Make sure you follow through on your end of promoting them. You could even send them a link to the video when its done so they can see it.
8. If your YouTube video gets flagged for the music, you may create an official document and send it to YouTube. This can be as simple as a PDF that verifys you have commercial rights to use their music in your videos on your channel.
In this video on my seanTHiNKs channel, I used music from artist relationships and music from Audio Jungle. I verbally thank one of the labels at the end of the video and put the music info in the YouTube description.
Other Royalty Free Music Site You Should Know About
Moby (the singer-songwriter, musician, DJ) has made a selection of over 150 tracks from his huge catalog of music available to licence for free, via a simple online application system. The site is a resource for independent and non-profit filmmakers, film students, and anyone in need of free music for their independent, non-profit film, video, or short.
Killer Tracks has a ton of VERY HIGH QUALITY music. However, it’s pricey. Worth checking out if you have a bigger budget.
If you have recommendations that should be on the Best Royalty Free Music Sites list, let me know by commenting on the YouTube video HERE.