Where To Get Free MP3s? Five Trusted Sites
Of course, you can find mp3s for pretty much any artist on iTunes, or Amazon. But most of us don't have a bunch of money to spend on digital music. There are some semi-legal and illegal alternatives, but besides their illegality, many "free mp3" and torrent sites are hotbeds of malware, spyware, viruses and other rip-offs. You never really know who you're dealing with, or what you're truly downloading when you get that "free" song or album. Are there reputable places online to obtain mp3 music or spoken word files free of charge? There aren't many, but there are definitely some. Here are a few I can recommend:
MP3.com has been around for a while, and it is a trusted website with no strings attached. They offer thousands of music downloads in mp3 format in a variety of genres: rock, hip-hop, reggae, jazz, latin, and several others. You probably won't find a lot of big-name artists on here, but it does offer an excellent chance to discover and enjoy some newer talents. Registration is not required to download music.
You knew you could buy music on Amazon, but free mp3s? It's true, this online mega-retailer has a free mp3 section with hundreds of music and spoken word files to download. Not only that, but you can find songs from major artists such as Wye Oak, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Flogging Molly, Blondie, Metric and The Game, among others. An Amazon account is required to download the free music, but setting one up doesn't cost anything. To go directly to their free mp3 section, go here.
The Internet Archive
The non-profit Internet Archive is not only an incredible source of public domain and creative commons documents, books and video, but also has a large library of audio files, many of them in mp3 (and other formats). You can find old newscasts, presidential speeches, podcasts and
music from local and independent artists. You can even download or stream recordings of live performances from well-known bands such as the Grateful Dead. Just go to Archive.org and click on either the Live Music or Audio sub-headers on the main page. You can browse by artist name, or you can use the search feature. No registration is required.
This popular music streaming site has thousands of songs from major artists available to stream, but did you know they also offer some free music downloads? Most of the mp3s available for free are from indie and lesser-known artists, but this is also a great way to acquaint yourself with music that you may not have had a chance to encounter elsewhere. Go here for the free mp3 section. Registration is not required in order to download.
Jamendo bills itself as "the world's largest digital service for free
music", and they do have a lot of music: around half a million tracks
from over 30,000 artists. The music is all offered under the Creative
Commons license and is free to download and re-distribute non-
commercially. Artists can also upload their own music to share.
Signing up for a free account is needed in order to download.