Wednesday, June 11, 2008 at 8:08am by The Free Geek
These days, everyone seems so scared of the RIAA that they’re relegated to using paid services like iTunes and Napster, but it doesn’t have to be that way. There are a number of legal and mostly-legal sources that offer great music from both established and emerging artists, and they’re happy to share downloads with you for free. We’ve compiled a list of 100 of these sources for your downloading enjoyment here. Variety If you’d like to spice up your music collection with loads of different tunes, these sites have a wide variety to offer.
- MP3.com: This favorite site features free tracks from artists like Paul Oakenfold and the B-52′s.
- Oddio Overplay: On Oddio Overplay, you’ll get access to radio, original music, old recordings, and loads more.
- fluctu8: On this site, you’ll find podcasts for jazz, international music, and more.
- iSound: iSound has lots of great bands, and a feature that lets you find artists based on groups that you already like.
- Epitonic: On this site, you’ll not only find lots of music to download, you’ll also find great write-ups, a community, and lots of links.
- Better Propaganda: On Better Propaganda, you’ll find tons of new music to download for free.
- AvidBeauty: This site has lots of audio and video downloads, including mp3 and music.
- Soundlift: Soundlift features music from loads of different genres, like pop, classical, and jazz.
- Peoplesound: Visit this site for downloads from emerging artists in blues, dance, pop, and more.
- We7: We7 has downloads for everything from country to reggae, and even features unsigned artists.
- SpiralFrog: This site has more than 1 million free downloads from artists like Mariah Carey, 3 Doors Down, and Sugarland, all rated and recommended.
Daily Download Check out these sites that feature a new, free download each and every day.
- mp3 Jackpot: This site features a new song on their mp3 Jackpot every day.
- eMusic: eMusic offers a review and a new download every day.
- iSound: On iSound, you’ll find a new download every day, and a list of the last 100 featured.
Search Engines Armed with the power of these search engines, you can find just about any song your heart desires.
- SeeqPod: SeeqPod is a useful search engine that finds media files on the web and offers lots of extras.
- G2P: Use G2P to find what you’re looking for on Google.
- The Hype Machine: This site finds music from blogs, and provides links to each post where you can download the original track.
- Meloditrax: Use this music search engine to find old favorites and discover new ones.
- AirMp3: Visit AirMp3 to get results from several music sites at once.
- Mp3Realm: This search engine is specifically dedicated to finding mp3s.
- ICkStuff: Visit ICkStuff to download music, as well as video and other media while you’re at it.
- Dogpile: Dogpile performs a metasearch for audio across all of the major search engines.
- Online Media Finder: With Online Media Finder, it’s easy to find artist tracks by search or tag.
- eSpew: Check out eSpew for an easy to use, advanced music search engine.
- Jimmyr: Jimmyr serves up an easy way to search Google for free downloads.
- BeeMP3: BeeMP3 provides an easy, no frills way to download mp3s.
- CCHits: This search engine exclusively features music that’s released under Creative Commons.
- cr3ation b3ta: This service offers a handy music search.
- SkreemR: SkreemR aggregates music from all over the Internet and offers easy download links for songs.
- Musgle: Musgle is an ultra-simple Google for music.
Community Music is a very social art, so it’s no wonder that these communities have formed to share free downloads and discussions.
- Haystack: On Haystack, you can view artist profiles, and use this hack to download free music.
- Del.icio.us: This social bookmarking site regularly has good popular mp3 links.
- WebJay: This playlist community creates lists of songs for you to download and enjoy.
- alonetone: Check out alonetone for awesome artist-led albums and playlists for downloading.
- Purevolume: Find new and emerging artists on this music community site.
- mp3 4U: Visit this site, where excellent sources recommend songs to download.
- Mp3Board: Find the latest news and downloads on this Digg-style site for music.
- Opsound: Check out this pool of music for sounds that are free and open for anyone to download and use.
- Soundclick: Soundclick highlights artists, members, and more, all with free downloads.
- Starfrosch: On this site, you can share, download, and vote for music.
- Jamendo: As a Jamendo member, you can make your own playlists, offer reviews, and discuss artists in the forum.
- AudioStreet: In this community, you can chat on the forums, hear about news, and check out featured artists.
- Dance-Industries: Here you’ll be able to check out artist ratings and vote on your own favorites.
World Music Stay on top of music from around the world with these sources.
- Digital Sounds: On this site, you’ll find new German downloads and more.
- Venzero Mixtape: This German site offers a mixtape with some of their favorite bands.
- Sangeetix: Visit Sangeetix to find Hindi music and lyrics.
- Dogmazic: Dogmazic has loads of French tracks and beyond.
- Tonspion: This site has lots of German artists, as well as other popular tracks from around the world.
- Muzic9: Check out this site for new tracks from Asia.
- Cantaria: This site offers tracks of traditional Western European folk.
- Deezer: Deezer features both established and emerging artists on their French site.
- ElectroBel: Hear electronic music from Belgium, Luxembourg, and beyond on this site.
Shows & Festivals These sites make it easy for you to get your live music fix.
- SXSW: Here you can download showcase music from the SXSW festival in Austin.
- CBC Radio 3 Sessions: CBC’s Sessions podcast offers live recordings of excellent Canadian independent artists.
- Live Music Archive: On this archive, you’ll be able to download recordings from bands that don’t mind if their performances are distributed.
- Songza: Check out Songza for live recordings, but be patient when searching for free downloads.
- bt.etree.org: This community tracks live concert recordings of artists that allow free downloads.
Blogs Visit these blogs to stay on top of the latest downloads, plus insightful commentary.
- Free iTunes Downloads: This blog keeps readers up to date on free downloads that are available on the iTunes music store.
- Stereogum: Stereogum serves up awesome music, news and commentary.
- Bradley’s Almanac: Bradley’s Almanac features loads of music, specifically special tracks from Boston.
- Giga Tracks: This blog features mostly indie musicians, and offers descriptions of familiar artists they sound like. The blog also offers lots of industry news.
- Molly O’Poverty’s Guide to (Mostly) Free Music: Although the blog is closed, you can check out Molly’s archives for lots of great links to free downloads.
- Free Metal Albums: Here you can download free, legal albums from high quality, obscure metal artists.
- Totally Free Music: Totally Free Music has music…that’s totally free, including loads of Nine Inch Nails.
- largehearted boy: On largehearted boy, you’ll find daily links to free downloadable music.
- 3hive: 3hive links to official labels and artist websites that want to share mp3s.
- Audiofile: Although Salon’s Audiofile blog has been discontinued, they’ve still left up a great collection of free songs to download.
- Free Albums Galore: On Free Albums Galore, you’ll be able to download entire albums from indie artists and more.
- Spinner: Here you’ll find a new mp3 nearly everyday, plus free download roundups.
- Gratisvibes: Check out this blog that features free licensed music from around the world.
Labels Get free music straight from the source with these record labels that offer free downloads.
- Internet Archive: Netlabels: Check out this "netlabel" collection to find techno music and more.
- Misantrof Antirecords: Visit the Misantrof Music Archives to find a historical collection of music to download.
- Metronomicon Audio: Visit Metronomicon Audio to download lots of artist tracks in both mp3 and ogg.
- Matador Records: Matador now features zipped files of their "Intended Play" collections.
- Mush Records: Visit Mush Records to get access to loads upon loads of free downloads from their artists.
- Loca Records: Download these awesome tracks from Loca Records.
- Barsuk: Get free mp3s from Barsuk Records artists like Nada Surf and Jim Noir.
- w00tw0t0 Records: Check out this label’s many downloads of independent electronic music.
- Vice Records: Vice’s blog now offers free downloads from their artists on a regular basis.
Classical & Public Domain Many older and classical works are available as public domain, and these sites have used the freedom afforded by this classification to offer free downloads.
- Musopen: On this site, you can download classical music from performers from around the world, well organized and easy to find.
- Classic Cat: Classic Cat is a directory that links to composers online.
- Karadar: Karadar offers an easy way to find free downloads for classical pieces.
- Wikipedia: This list features a number of public doman musical works available for download on Wikipedia.
- Piano Society: Check out these recordings and biographies from composers.
- Columbia University Orchestra: Find free downloads for this orchestra’s performances of pieces by Beethoven, Mozart, and more.
- The Classical Archives: Check out thee archives to get access to more than 40,000 files by classical composers, including live recordings and MIDI files.
- PublicDomain4U: This site stays on top of public domain songs, featuring artists like Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, and Irving Berlin.
General Here you’ll find loads of interesting downloads, from holiday songs to free remix sites.
- ccMixter: On this site, you’ll find remixes that are licensed to be sampled, mashed-up and more.
- freesound: Check out freesound, where you’ll get access to all sorts of free Creative Commons licensed sounds.
- Kahvi Collective: Visit the Kahvi Collective for "free electronic grooves."
- Free Christmas Music: Check out this site that offers free mp3 downloads of holiday songs.
- Free kids music: Find contemporary and traditional music for children on this site.
- LegalTorrents: This torrent site offers legal downloads of mp3s, netlabel music, sounds, and more.
- OverClocked ReMix: Check out this community that offers remixes of video game music.
- UnExotica: The songs featured on this site are from Amoga Games and demo soundtracks.
- Free Jazz Downloads: All About Jazz has daily downloads of jazz music and more.
- MTV: MTV regularly features a nul.i8mber of freebie downloads from different popular genres.
- GarageBand: In this community, you can check out independent music from online musicians.
- Amie Street: On Amie Street, you’ll find loads of free tracks from independent artists.
- NovemberStar Entertainment: On NovemberStar, you can check out an extensive database of talented independent artists.
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