Anyone who works on a creative project will tell you that music is by far one of the most important things you’re going to have to consider. Be it vlogs, cinematic films, games or just about anything that people are going to interact with, music makes things better.
However, choosing the right music is also essential. It might just be a track playing in the background when you speak, but if you put metal in a tutorial about photoshop, you might just put off your audience.
Apart from the obvious choice of music going along with your content, you also need to take into consideration whether or not you can use that music online. In short, the music you use should be royalty-free.
There are a bunch of places you can find royalty-free music — free and paid. In this article, we’re going to take a look at some of them.
Also read: How to avoid a copyright strike on YouTube? A concise YT copyright guide
3 ways to find royalty-free music online
Aforementioned there several ways you can find royalty-free music but keep in mind that if you’re looking for the cream of the crop, you’re going to have to pay. Most creators charge a fee for letting people use their music in their products.
That said if you’re a student, NGO or a non-profit organisation, you might get away with a pro-bono license.
Stock music websites
Yes, I know what you’re thinking. Everyone hates paying but realistically speaking, and these websites are going to make life a lot easier for you.
There are hundreds of websites offering stock music all over the internet. Most notable ones include Epidemic Sound, Premium Beat by Shutterstock and Audio Jungle. All these sites follow a subscription-based model, among several others that offer similar quality music.
In my opinion, that’s what you should go for as licensing individual tracks can be quite expensive in the long run. Besides, these websites have vast libraries with music that’s well organised and easy to find. You can look up whatever it is that you desire in under ten minutes.
Just like big-time stock music websites, a lot of individual artists are also taking to the internet to sell their music.
You can find a lot of individual artist websites that license their music, and it’s quite cheap. I use music from an artist called Dan-O. You can get songs for a lifetime license to use anywhere you want for $10 per song. Or you could just make a $50 donation and use his entire library as you please.
You can visit his website here
He even offers a pro-bono license to non-profit projects, schools and students. Similarly, other artists also might give away free music and licenses for good causes, or you might just be able to get some music for your projects for cheap.
Then there’s AShamaluevMusic, who works on a similar model. You can either license out individual tracks or just sign up to his Patreon and get access to all his tracks (60+) for free, to be used as you desire.
Another up and coming artist whose music I’ve used is Riz_Mix, who specialises mostly in electronic instrumental music. There’s a Soundcloud and YouTube channel by the name of NCS (Non-Copyright Music). They also produce some really nice EDM tracks that are free too.
The ‘free’ stuff
Free music is available quite readily, to be honest, but it’s rarely good enough to be put in a professional-looking piece. You can find a bunch of tracks on Soundcloud or even Spotify, but just how well will they fit in your piece, that’s up to you.
Finally, one more tool at your disposal is the YouTube Audio Library. The library includes a bunch of royalty-free music and sounds effects and is accessible through your Creator panel. The tracks are quite generic, but you still might find one or two useful pieces in there.
Do keep in mind that this method takes quite a lot of time. This will probably be the most time-consuming part of your projects. It definitely is for me.