Royalty Free Music & Sound Effects

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Good music and sound design can make or break any video. If you've got good video, but bad audio, your video probably won't do as well as if you had great audio and mediocre video. It's vital to get the perfect audio track and sound effects in your video. However, it can be hard filtering through all the options there are available online, so I created a list of royalty free music, songs, and sound effects that you can use in your own production.

The following is a collective list of all the sites I’ve found that offer music and sound effects for video production (home made youtube videos or more professional). They are in no specific order. Most of them are royalty free and require no attribution, but there are some that do require specific details, so be sure to read the licensing details for each site before you use it for commercial (or noncommerical) purposes.

Royalty Free Music

  • Youtube

    Royalty free music for videos and other projects

    That's right, Youtube's new audio library is specifically designed for creators in mind of both video and music. So if you're looking to make a video with some free music, you can choose from the library. Although not many songs are in it right now, music makers can upload their work to add to the project.

    Style: Calm and easy for voice over and miscellaneous videos.

  • TheFatRat (On YouTube)

    TheFatRat is one of my new favorite resources for <em>some</em> royalty free music. Some of the songs do get caught by youtube's copyright detection system, however (since they're remixes).

    Style: Remix

  • Goblins From Mars

    Another great source of royalty free, creative commons dubstep is Goblins From Mars. You can listen to their stuff on YouTube and most of the videos have direct download links.

    Style: Dubstep

  • Melody loops

    Melody loops is a very useful site to get music if you're looking for some background music that should be able to repeat for as long as you'd like it to. They offer some quality music, but they're not all free. There are some free songs, but others can cost anywhere from $5 to $10.

    Style: Varied, easy, background, loopable

  • Activity Music (On Youtube)

    Activity Music is another Youtube-based music channel that uploads upbeat genres like electro, dubsteb and hard dance, among others.

    Style: Dubstep, house, hard dance, electro, trance, other

  • Sound Cloud

    Soundcloud is a well-known HUB for musicians to create and share their work. While most of it is protected under copyright, some artists choose to let others use their music – sometimes under specific requirements like attribution. You can search Soundcloud for music licensed under creative commons so you can use it in your production.

    Style: Varied, searchable

  • Lino Rise

    Lino Rise, from Germany, offers his creative work for free on his website. These are intro songs that you'd want to use in a video or as a hook.

    Style: Varied, intro

  • Sound Click

    Sound Click has a long list of songs that you can buy, but also free ones that can be used commercially. Just click the license type dropdown and click creative commons before picking a song.

    Style: Varied

  • Premium beat

    Premium beat has a one time fee to enable you to use all of their tracks, both much and sound effects, forever with 100% copyright clear.

    Style: Varied

  • Sonnyboo

    Sonnyboo has royalty free tracks that are also free to download. However, the tracks are licensed under the Creative Commons by Attribution license.

    Style: Varied

  • Public Domain 4U

    Public Domain 4U offers some good ol' public domain tracks. Being in the public domain, anyone can modify and use in any production, commercial or noncommercial.

    Style: Early 1900s, public domain, varied

  • Musopen

    Musopen offers a similar, public domain, music choices from composers such as Bach, Beethoven, Borodin and Schubert.

    Style: Public domain, old, varied

  • Free Soundtrack Music

    Free soundtrack music is like the other music curation sites, it's filterable by genre.

    Style: Varied

  • Free Stock Music

    Free stock music offers 100% free production music for anything your little heart desires.

    Style: Stock music, varied

  • Open Music Archive

    Josh Woodward offers creative commons &#8220;songs for people who like things.&#8221; I like things, don't you?

    Style: Varied

  • No Copyright Sound

    No Copyright Sound has a good selection of music to look through for your videos or other projects.

    Style: Varied

  • AudioPad (On Youtube)

    AudioPad offers a good selection of royalty free music on their Youtube page.

    Style: Varied

  • Audio Blocks

    Audio Blocks has music, sound effects, and loops, but requires a subscription fee.

    Style: Varied

  • Josh Woodward

    Josh Woodward offers creative commons &#8220;songs for people who like things.&#8221; I like things, don't you?

    Style: Varied

  • Jonathan Coulton

    From the guy who brought you Re: Your Brains, Jonathan Coulton offers his music on his website for free/cheap download.

    Style: Varied, fun

  • Moby Gratis

    Moby Gratis is a composer who makes music with independent filmmakers in mind.

    Style: Cinematic

  • Free Music Archive

    Free Music Archive has a nice curation of content that can be filtered by genre or curator.

    Style: Varied

  • iStockPhoto

    iStockPhoto isn't only for photos. It also features illustrations, video and audio.

    Style: Varied

  • Audio Nectar

    Audio Nectar has free music that can be filtered by categories. Much of their royalty free music is pleasant and fun sounding.

    Style: Varied, fun

  • Machinimasound

    Machinimasound has songs that they encourage people to use in their machinimas (machinima = a portmanteau of machine and cinema).

    Style: Varied, epic

  • Smart Sound + Incompetech

    This little tool lets you pick some music from Incompetech, but filter it by how long your video is in intervals of small amounts of time. The tracks were created at different durations knowing that people might be using them to make intros or other short videos.

    Style: Varied

  • Danosongs

    Danosongs has been around for a while. It's just one guy who makes music that you can use royalty free, so you should donate so he can continue it.

    Style: Varied

  • Free Play Music

    Targeted towards Youtube videos, Free Play Music has a nice selection of tracks to pick from.

    Style: Varied

  • Jamendo

    Targeted towards Youtube videos, Jamendo offers over 400,000 tracks, but they do cost some money. They won't break the bank, so they could be a viable option.

    Style: Varied

  • Dig CC Mixter

    Targeted towards Youtube videos, Dig CC Mixter can sort some music options with commercial use and for what medium you're using it for.

    Style: Coffee shop, podcast, video, etc.

  • Jamie Nord Music

    Targeted towards Youtube videos, Jamie Nord offers some nice music on the condition that you link back to their website.

    Style: Varied, celtic, electronic, happy

  • Pau Mateo

    Pau Mateo has some nice music that you can download on Soundcloud.

    Style: Calm

  • Purple Planet

    Purple Planet lets you use their music if you link back to their site.

    Style: Varied

Royalty Free Sound Effects

Sound effects play an important role in any video or audio production. They help immersify the viewer and make your video sound authentic. These sites offer royalty free sound effects for your youtube or professional video productions. Most of them are free and are a great resource to have.

  • Free Sound

    Search from a ton of sound effects based on any keyword at

    Style: Sound effects

  • Jojikiba (On Youtube)

    Jojikiba puts up sound effects that may be very useful in specific videos that need some extra soundscape such as an animation.

    Style: Sound effects

  • PacDV

    PacDV has a bulk sound effects download available, but they ask that you attribute them by giving a link back to their site when you use their music.

    Style: Sound effects

  • Sound Snap

    Sound Snap has sound effects and some music. They offer a $249/year price for unlimited download; a bit pricey, but cheaper than hiring a specialist for sound design.

    Style: Sound effects, loops

  • Sound Bible

    Sound Bible has free sound clips, bites and effects.

    Style: Sound effects

  • Sound Effects+

    Sound Effects Plus (previously Sound Jay) sound effects library is royalty free and costs nothing to you. But you can't take advantage of the creators by reselling them or other nonsense.

    Style: Sound effects

  • Find Sounds

    This useful search engine searches the web for different sound effects that you can further filter based on the format, channels, resolution and sample rate.

    Style: Sound effects