How to Download Music for Free Safely

Are you hoping to make a great music playlist, but don’t know where to find good music? Here’s how you can download great music for FREE!

Good music isn’t hard to find, but it’s certainly hard to keep. Anti-piracy laws prevent online users from stealing music from artists without their consent.

But the keyword here is ‘consent.’ There are plenty of talented artists and musicians who actually want to spread their music to the world even if it means giving it away for free.

So, how do you find these artists without falling victim to potentially virus-laden clickbait? Check out this guide on how to download music for free without risking the security of your device. 

Why Are Music Downloads So Strict?

A music download is protected by what’s called copyright. Copyright is a type of protection that keeps works of art safe from theft. If you were to write a song and distribute it, it belongs to you. 

Music artists want to get the word out about their music, but when they are signed to a label, artists can’t simply give away the music without permission. This happens because the label and sometimes publisher owns the rights to the song.

Breaking copyright law is a big deal. If you try to go out and make the same song you hear on the radio, expect major lawsuits.

Artists want protection against the chance that their originality and image will be taken by someone else. So, what does this have to do with downloading a song just so you can enjoy it on your phone?

Easy. Copyright also protects artists from losing money.

If you don’t pay for a song, you’re basically taking money from the artist. The label has invested thousands, sometimes millions, into the artist in exchange for the promise of future sales.

Stealing their music cheapens the artist’s worth and limits the label’s ability to make money.

Who Allows Free Music Downloads?

There are quite a few reasons you might stumble upon free music online. Here are a few legit places to scour for free music on the internet.

Indie Artists

One of the top reasons artists give away free music is that they’re independent. This means they aren’t signed to a label and own the rights to their music themselves.

They don’t have anyone to answer to so they can give away as many free music downloads as they want. Go to the social channels or websites of your favorite indie artists to get free music downloads. 

You’ll notice they might have pages on third-party music sites where their songs are featured as well. Sometimes these third party sites allow free access to the artist’s music for a certain amount of time.

This is a major bonus because artists won’t usually give away the entire album. They’ll give away specific tracks as a type of promotion.

But when you use a third party music distribution site, you’ll get the entire album for free. The only caveat is that you can’t save it to your phone or computer. 

Children’s Songs

Children’s songs may include songs that adults sing or teach to children, songs children pass along to each other, and songs that children compose themselves. These distinctions are not always clear cut, however, as adults may teach children songs that they learned from other children in childhood, and children may pass along songs learned from adults to other children.

Crowd Sourcing Sites

There are options to download free music for projects like creating a video blog. You’ll be hard-pressed to get free licensing to use the music from a major artist in your intro or outro.

But you can download stock music from popular crowdsourcing sites. These sites often have a daily feature that’s free to download. 

The benefit of using these online music services is credibility. The artists have been vetted so the sound quality is pretty high. You’ll also get a variety of music file types which makes the editing process much easier. 

Record Label Websites

Another place to get free music from artists is a record label website. These sites are great for finding music from popular artists.

Every now and then you’ll run across an option to download a song as a promo. This opportunity doesn’t come along often because record labels are looking for ways to monetize artist tracks.

There’s no way for them to get money from your free download except the hope that you’ll later buy or stream the artist’s music. 

Your Friends

The final and most personal way to download music for free is to share files through a cloud service. In order for this to work, you’ll need access to someone else’s file-sharing service who has already bought the music you want.

It’s perfectly legal to share music for personal reasons. If your spouse has a number album in their Dropbox, for example, it’s fine for them to send you the link so you can download that music to your phone.

If you ever tried to sell or distribute the music, then you’d have a problem. Use file-sharing services when you get links from people you know.

Avoid any links you find in online forums as they might contain viruses or other questionable malware.

How to Download Music for Projects

Knowing how to download music depends on how you plan to use the music. Record labels, publishers, and artists have a complicated web of ownership that makes taking a popular song and using it for your business very expensive.

Never download a song and use it without permission. There are plenty of apps that’ll rip music from the web for free, but there’s not much you can do with the song once it’s downloaded it except enjoy it in your car.

Enjoy music from artists who willingly give away their sounds as part of a promotion so you don’t risk breaking the law. For more information and tips visit our blog for updates. 

You’ll need permission from everyone who owns the rights to the music in order to use it. 

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