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How to Listen to Free Classical Music Online

Updated on May 13, 2015

You Know the Benefits

By now, the word is out--classical music is good for your health, helps you study, helps you build up your brain power, and much more. The problem is, the classical repertoire stretches back more than a thousand years, and includes hundreds of composers, so how do you find something you like, and listen to it without spending a fortune on buying CDs or downloading mp3s? How do you find a particular composer, or worse, a composition? How do you know what you will like? The selection can be completely overwhelming, especially for someone who is not familiar with the history and the ins and outs of classical music. Fortunately, the internet comes to the rescue, with plenty of classical stations to listen to for free, as long as you have an internet connection, and the number of recordings available on the internet is growing all the time!

Antonio Vivaldi

Antonio Vivaldi, 1678-1741, Italian, Venetian composer
Antonio Vivaldi, 1678-1741, Italian, Venetian composer | Source

Different Sources

There are two basic ways to find classical music online: either you can listen to streaming sources, which require an internet connection, or you can find free mp3 or other formats of music to download to your computer or standalone players. Whichever method you choose, there are hundreds of thousands of choices for discovering your favourite composers, compositions, genres, and artists. Give some of these resources a try—you'll find classical music for studying, for relaxation, for relieving stress, and much more! And since you have nothing to lose but a few seconds on a composition you don't like, it makes sense to be adventurous and begin exploring the composers, compositions, instruments, genres, and history of classical music!

Obviously, it is not possible to list every single streaming source, because there are just so many thousands of good sites. I have tried to list as many portals rather than individual stations as possible, because new streaming sources come online all the time, as traditional radio stations add simulcasts on the internet.

Russian composer Igor Stravinsky
Russian composer Igor Stravinsky | Source

Away from Your Internet Connection

Unfortunately, we cannot yet take the internet with us everywhere we go. For those times when you are cut off from streaming sources because you just don't have the internet handy, consider downloading tracks to your standalone music or video player. There is plenty of classical music you can download that will tide you over until you can find your favourite streaming source again!

One More Place to Try

Amazon.com has numerous free tracks and albums available, some in the classical section. Amazon also has great specials, so check out their discounts, gold box and four-for-three promotions. You can preview any track to find out if you like it, and you can buy music by the album (cheapest) or by the track.

What is Your Favourite Source?

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