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How to Tell if Free Music is Actually Free

Jourdan Aldredge

Feb 14, 2023

As a filmmaker or content creator, music plays a critical role in your work. Whether you're producing a short film, a commercial, or a social media video, the right music can elevate the mood, create atmosphere, and add emotional depth to your work. 

However, securing the rights to use music in your projects can be a challenge. With so many options available, it can be difficult to know what's legal and what's not. That's why it's important to understand how to tell if free music is actually free.

So, to help you on your own filmmaking and content creation journey, let’s go over everything you need to know regarding “free music” online, as well as give you some actually free music resources to help you along your way.

What is “free music” actually?

man in gray t-shirt playing guitar

The first thing to understand is that, unfortunately, there is no such thing as “free” music. All music is protected by copyright laws, which means that you need permission from the copyright owner to use it in your work. While some music is available for free through public domain or creative commons licenses, most music is protected and requires a license.

One of the biggest risks of free music is the threat of copyright infringement. When you use music without a license, you're breaking the law and could face significant fines and legal fees. 

Or, in the case of uploading unlicensed music on platforms like YouTube, you can get strikes against your account. Or, in the most dire situations, have your account banned or deleted completely.

Even if the music is labeled as "free" or "royalty-free", it's important to do your research and make sure that you have the right to use it. To avoid these risks, it's best to invest in a music licensing solution.

Understanding music licensing solutions

Soundstripe is a music licensing solution that offers a massive library of high-quality music tracks, all cleared for commercial use. With Soundstripe, you won't have to worry about copyright infringement, and you can use the music in your projects with confidence. 

Soundstripe offers flexible pricing options to fit your budget and needs, whether you're a freelancer, small business, or large corporation. With Soundstripe, you'll have access to a constantly growing library of music, so you'll always have fresh options for your projects.

Free music plans that are actually free

flat-lay photo of headphones, MIDI keyboard, and speaker on black surface

But what if you're working with a tight budget and can't afford a music licensing solution?

Another option to consider is using a free music library like YouTube Audio Library. This is a collection of royalty-free music that you can use in your videos on YouTube. However, keep in mind that this music is also used by many other creators, so you may find that it's not unique enough for your projects. 

Additionally, the selection of music may be limited, and you won't have access to the same level of quality and variety that you would with a music licensing solution like Soundstripe.

The importance of licensing agreements

So, how can you tell if free music is actually free? The best way is to do your research. Check the licensing agreement and make sure that you have the right to use the music in your projects. Pay close attention to any restrictions or limitations, such as the number of times you can use the music or the types of projects it can be used in.

Finding the right music for your projects can be a challenge, but with a little research and the right resources, you can ensure that your work is protected and that you're using music that will enhance your projects. 

Whether you're using a plan from Soundstripe or another music licensing solution, it's important to make sure that you're using music that is legal and that you have the right to use it. 

By doing so, you'll avoid the risks of copyright infringement and you'll be able to focus on creating the best work possible.

How to get started with free music that is actually free

flat screen TV turn on inside room

So, if you're looking for high-quality music that's cleared for commercial use, consider Soundstripe. With a constantly growing library of music, and flexible pricing options, Soundstripe has everything you need to take your projects to the next level. 

Whether you're producing a short film, a commercial, or a social media video, Soundstripe has the music you need to bring your vision to life. So why wait? Start exploring the Soundstripe library today and find the perfect music for your next project!