Trying to find free songs to download from the Internet while staying legal can sometimes feel like an impossible mission. However, you'd be surprised how many ways you can source digital music while staying on the right side of the law. This article shows you how to accumulate free audio by downloading, recording, and even extracting from video.
*Please note:* Even though the methods below are legal, it is always best to make sure you don't infringe on copyright. If in doubt, don't download, share, or make copies. For more information, see our Legal Issues section.
If you prefer to download free songs and music from websites rather than using a file sharing, then there are many websites that host free and legal music. Many of these often provide free tracks that are uploaded by undiscovered artists (and some well-known ones) looking for that much needed exposure to increase their fan base. Having a download manager is also recommended if you plan on downloading a lot of songs.
There are many file sharing (P2P) networks on the Internet that you can connect to using a BitTorrent client. These are extremely popular, but the vast majority of them provide links to copyrighted material. This article lists some of the best legal P2P sites for downloading free songs, music, videos, and other types of files in safety.
A soundtrack on a video often comes with a song or piece of music that you may want to extract to an MP3 file. There are various ways to do this. Here are some suggestions:
If you regularly visit websites that stream media, then you can record the output of your soundcard using the right software. Whether you’re listening to a streaming music service or watching music videos, you can capture the audio and encode it to one of several audio formats. Here is a selection of free audio programs that can record streaming audio from various sources.
Internet radio represents a huge resource that provides 24/7 entertainment. There are literally thousands of radio stations that you can listen to via your software media player, browser, etc if supported. With the right software you can also record Web radio broadcasts to quickly build up a collection of digital music that is legal. Here is a selection of free audio programs that can record streaming audio and generate various audio file formats.
Typically ringtone websites don't offer full-length songs, however they can be a good source to tap into if you want to build up a library of short tunes to liven up your phone. Many of the free ringtone sites that we have listed here also provide other freebies like videos, games, themes, and more.
If you want to take a step further than this, why not make your own? To find out more, be sure to read our guide on how to use iTunes to make free ringtones. If you don't use iTunes, then there are more alternative ways to source free ringtones.
If you want it all, then using Internet search software is probably your best choice. These often come with a whole suite of built-in tools for searching the Internet for music and videos. The method used usually invloves media streams being recorded rather than directly downloading -- this enables you to source free and legal media that can be stored on an external hard drive, CD/DVD, or other type of storage for later playback.