Here Are 5 Resources For Royalty Free Music

music   Here Are 5 Resources For Royalty Free MusicA while back, we received a question on MakeUseOf Answers asking where in the world one can get royalty free music. Naturally, as someone who is constantly searching for this Holy Grail, I jumped on it.

So, dear MakeUseOf readers, I felt that this is a question worthy enough to expand upon. I’m quite sure that some of you out there are wondering where to find royalty free music whether you’re a videomaker, a game developer, or one of those neo-artist stage performance poets that uses a combination of visual imagery, weird music, and the occasional bit of innocent nudity. So with that being said, I’m here to bring you some quality royalty free music.

Vimeo Music Store

vimeomusicstore   Here Are 5 Resources For Royalty Free Music

The Vimeo Music Store is a brilliant tool to use when in search for music for your videos. Although there are several free items available via the Creative Commons, there are actually a few songs that you can pay for either personal use ($1.99) or for commercial use ($98). The Vimeo Music Store is a nice consolidated catalog of music from all genres, and the best part about it is that each song on the store is available to use for your videos. This way, you do not have to do as much digging. However, you will have to lurk around if you want to find free royalty free songs, and it’s a little harder if you want to use them commercially without paying a dime.


soundcloud   Here Are 5 Resources For Royalty Free Music

I recently discovered the beauty of SoundCloud, and the fact is this – they have an entire section of their site devoted to the Creative Commons. What does that mean for you? Well, my friend, it means there is a ton of music out there waiting on you to use it in a personal project. SoundCloud also offers quite a bit of search classifications, so you can find songs with CC licenses that allow for commercial use or without the share alike option. It seems like a good deal to me, and I’ve been using their music for quite a few projects lately.

Free Music Archive

freemusicarchive   Here Are 5 Resources For Royalty Free Music

The Vimeo Music Store pulls some of their music from the Free Music Archive, but I decided to go ahead and throw it in as a separate entity for a couple of reasons. One, it seems like the Vimeo Music Store doesn’t include all of the songs on here, for it constantly updates. Two, it also seems like there is some differing information between the sites.

For instance, I used a song that I got from the Vimeo Music store for free, and on their site, it said I could only use it for noncommercial purposes. However, when I saw it on the Free Music Archive, it said I could use it for commercial purposes with attribution. Either way, both are excellent sources of music, and I would recommend this site for sure. Granted, I cannot guarantee everything on this site will be available for you to use.


incompetech   Here Are 5 Resources For Royalty Free Music

We couldn’t have this article without mentioning Kevin MacLeod, the mastermind behind Incompetech. MacLeod’s website offers quite a bit of music for your royalty free needs, and it is absolutely fantastic. He does offer a PayPal donation system (as does AudioNautix, actually), so if you feel the need to support him, you can do so. However, his music is great for whatever you need, and there is nothing else I can really say except that you should go give it a listen.


audionautix   Here Are 5 Resources For Royalty Free Music

After submitting my answer to MUO answers (which included the Vimeo Music Store), I went back to see if anybody else had brought anything to the table. Fortunately, someone did, and that was MUO reader ha14, who suggested AudioNautix, another site for royalty free music. The site offers everything including tracks for cinematic works and documentaries, but what i really liked about it was simply how easy it was to understand the usage rights of this music. You can pretty much use it for anything, so… go do that. Right now.


These are simply my top four picks for royalty free music (with ha14’s tacked on), and each of them have quality stuff. You normally won’t see a whole lot of good music that you can use in projects, and each of these resources has a different flavor for everyone.

What other royalty free music resources do you use? What do you like or not like about the ones mentioned here?

Image Credit: imelenchon

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Cell Travis is another site worth mentioning.


thanks for the link

J. Lockhart

Great site. I’ve used it before, and they seem to have a lot of stuff on there.

J. Lockhart

Glad to be of service, Jerry.

J. Lockhart

Nice find. I’ll have to look into it.


Surprised not to see ccMixter here.  Does it not meet the criteria?

J. Lockhart

Seems like it does. I have just never heard of it. Nice find.

Christian Sheehy

I second this. I have used CC tracks from Jamendo for several projects. 

J. Lockhart

Thanks, Mike! I’ll be sure to check it out.

J. Lockhart

Very nice, Manuel. Seems like there are plenty more to write about.


thank for the input!)

J. Lockhart

Just saw this! Thanks, jtribe.

J. Lockhart

I’ll have to look into it!

J. Lockhart

Baha. Well. I’ll check it out, for sure.

J. Lockhart

I’m sure the audience is out there, Tony.

J. Lockhart

Thanks, Rob! Just saw this comment.

J. Lockhart

Love songwriters. I’ll look at it.


Check out

They have good free music not just rap “beats” like the rest of the free sites

Joshua Lockhart

Baha. It always gets a little frustrating when you only find beats, right?

col magee


For cheap and free royalty free music, is great – quality music for those looking for a more modern sound. Best of all the tracks are all only £0.99 and free to use however you like.



Joshua Lockhart

…Col. Do you happen to do music on SoundCloud?

Ryan A

Please check out

Its my site where I create free background music for people to use in their videos.
All I ask for is a simple credit link, NO money.

Joshua Lockhart

Very nice, Ryan. Ever thought about selling some of your work, though?

Connie Lockhart Ellefson

Hey, Joshua Lockhart–good name. not too many of us around! Thanks for your efforts to get the word out about free music.

I wanted to let you know we have some Free Royalty Free music at our site, suitable to use for non-commercial projects, such as home movies, and for education. And, of course, there are also hundreds of tracks of Royalty Free Music for professional video producers as well.

Here’s the link:

Thanks again, Connie

Joshua Lockhart

Baha. No. Not too many, eh?

Digging Smartsound, Connie. I’d love to take a closer look at it some time.

Mike Bielenberg

You might also try , an innovative online marketplace for royalty-free music. The production music library has over 17,000 tracks of affordable, high-quality royalty-free production music suitable for film, video, TV, radio, website, games, background music, legal music for YouTube, on hold music and other business music applications. New music is being added every day. Single tracks start at just $9.99. Most tracks are priced at $49.99. I am the co-founder.

Joshua Lockhart

Seems like a fair price, Mike. Thanks for sharing!


Another one royalty free music site is
They offer free royalty free music with embed code for websites at and alse they have an iframe version at where you can test live your projects.

Lester Woodward is a great resource for royalty free music.