Many people look for copyright free music when they don’t understand what it is they really need for their business project (such as background music for DVD or video productions, background music for presentations).
Musicians rarely create something and give it free for anyone to use in any way whatsoever. They may give away music as part of a wider promotional plan to create earnings from sales these free versions attract, of from earnings for giving permission to use their music in specific ways, which is called licensing. Check out Creative Commons for more details on the most popular way that artists offer up their music. For example, they may offer their music free to listen to only in non commercial situations. But if you want to use their music for a business use then they will want payment for the use of their work.
Musicians are not hard to understand, they just want payment for their hard work. They are passionate people who love what they do. Consider (for example) a bricklayer. He would want, and need payment for his work so he can pay his bills and earn a living. Unless he is doing it for charity or as a hobby.
Royalty free music is music that is offered for sale whilst the artist retains the ownership of his or her music. Royalty free music offers the music to customers with terms that will not need additional payments for usage after purchasing the music in the first place.
Royalty Free music will be sold and therefore licensed for specific uses. For example an artist may only offer you the right to use their music within dvd productions or presentation backgrounds and not for TV broadcasting. The use of their music in certain conditions will also require different fees depending on use. For example to use a piece of work in a major international film will probably be more expensive than using music for wedding background music understandably. Expect the amount of effort and quality of the music production will also be relative, i.e. a musician will probably work on a range of remixes and edits for a film production whilst a piece of music for backgrounds in presentations will be as is.
So, back to copyright.
If you wanted copyright free music you are effectively asking for ownership of a piece of music. Now that’s expensive. Say an artist has taken a week to create a piece of music. He / she is skilled and earns well at their art and so they don’t come that cheap either. How much do you think a piece of music would cost to own? Well some people do actually want to have the exclusive right to a piece of music. Take for example a signature tune. You will probably going to play this a lot. Take for example the Intel signature tune, all 2 seconds of it. Just to own that piece of music outright would have costs tens of thousands of dollars. Had they licensed it, Im sure it would have over time cost a lot more.
But if you just want a piece of music for a specific project, for a given number of production units, within certain boundaries (i.e. time and countries for instance) you wont need it for all the other reasons you would have access to if you owned the copyright. So, its going to be dramatically cheaper to just purchase the right to use the music in this way only, and for no other use. Take that tens of thousands of dollars and knock off approximately three of those zeros and that is the difference.
So, forget looking for copyright free music, cut to the chaise and check out royalty free music for your project today. Go somewhere that has a good collection of the specific genre you are looking for and listen to a good range of pieces from different artists. Develop a dialogue with the music library and ask them as many questions as you need before feeling happy that you will get exactly what you want.
Here at Ambient Music Garden we are ready for you if you are looking for royalty free ambient and downtempo music. We don’t do much else but pride ourselves in the music that we do offer. Please take a look when you have time.
Click here to check out our ambient relaxation, chillout and downtempo music.