Best Free & Legal Music Websites
The Internet is a goldmine for music lovers. There are dozens, if not hundreds, of great resources for finding lyrics, listening to songs, getting the latest news in the music industry, biographies of your favorite musicians and so much more. Despite the legal upheaval regarding piracy, there are plenty of free and totally legal sites to satisfy your love of music. Whether you’re looking for the latest news in the music industry, free and legal mp3 downloads or platforms to mix your own tunes, these websites are must-have resources for your toolbox.
News on the Music Biz
Music Business Times – one of the most reputable news sources dedicated to the music industry, covering all facets of the business, including marketing, legal news, opinions, people, labels, tech and more.
Bloomberg Music Industry News – taking the solid and ethical reporting practices of Bloomberg and focusing it solely on the music industry.
Digital Music News – focusing on the digital aspects of the music industry, Digital Music News offers information on chart-toppers, jobs in the music industry, the latest news and a section highlighting the latest debates in this still new but dominant facet of the music field.
Lyrics for Your Favorite Tracks
Lyrics Planet – search by song title or artist name to find lyrics for your favorite songs from today and yesterday. This comprehensive database is extremely well-organized making it possible to find practically any song provided you know the song title or artist name.
MP3Lyrics.org – browse the latest 40 lyrics added to the database, hottest songs, coolest artists, or search by song title or artist name to find the accurate lyrics for any song.
Absolute Lyrics – browse the newest music releases or the latest top songs, or watch related videos straight from Absolute Lyrics. You can also browse the full lyrics collection by letter or search with an artist name or song title.
Streaming Music Sites
Last.fm – keep a record of what you’ve listened to from any device and get recommendations for new music, concerts and more based on your profile and tastes.
Pure Volume – a site for up-and-coming independent artists to set up profiles and stream their music, some tracks are also available for free download depending on the artist’s settings.
SoundClick – a mix of signed and unsigned artists create profiles and stream their music. Users can search charts and genres, and artists can also enable their tracks for download if they choose.
Grooveshark – browse by genre, create and save playlists to listen to them again and stream music free straight to your laptop or device. Grooveshark also suggests new tracks based on your interests.
Slacker – listen to any number of pre-built streaming music stations free, or create your own customized streaming radio station to suit your personal preferences.
Blip.fm – a crossover between streaming radio and social networking, Blip.fm lets you listen to all songs free, share what you’re listening to with other users while generating a continuous playlist and gaining followers who share your tastes.
Free and Legal Music Download Sites
Archive.org – a vast collection of music in the public doman, Archive.org includes both tracks with expired copyrights as well as some contemporary music available free of charge.
Bearshare.com – millions of users and a large database of free songs and playlists to choose from, including popular songs and current hits. One of the most successful and fasted growing free downloading sites on the web today.
Artist Server – get your own radio station, blog, favorites list and more at Artist Server, where all music downloads are free. Mostly used by independent artists to gain exposure for their work, this site offers more than 11,000 downloads by 10,000 artists. It’s a great place to explore brand new music and connect with other fans.
CNET Download– already a trusted news source, CNET’s download section is typically thought of for obtaining software; however, users can also download mp3s here.
Epitonic – a curation site for underground music, Epitonic works directly with artists and labels to provide free and legal mp3s for download.
Jamendo – unlimited music, completely free and legal. Artists upload their albums under a Creative Commons license, so users can download more than 370,000 tracks while discovering independent talent.
MP3 Raid – an aggregation source compiling more than one million free and legal downloads from across the web, MP3 Raid lets you browse the most popular searches, most recent searches or search by artist or song title.
Make-Your-Own and Music Remix Sites
ccMixter – a community music site offering Creative Commons music files to download, remix and upload to share with others. ccMixter is also a good resource for obtaining music for school projects, videos, games and podcasts.
Jam Studio – a great resource for up-and-coming artists and casual experimenters who want to try their hand at mixing their own tunes.
Looplabs – choose from multiple of sophisticated interfaces to remix your own music, including Kesha Sleazy Remix Studio, Leaf Remix Studio, The Music Lab, 21st Century Girl Remix Studio, 2AM CLUB Remix Studio, Willow Remix Studio, Adidas Studio, DubStep Studio and Electro-House Blender.
Audacity – a free, open-source, cross-platform software for recording and editing sounds. Record live audio, convert file formats, edit and mix sounds, change playback speeds and more.
New Artist Information and Downloads
My Spoonful – a weekly newsletter highlighting a new independent artist, including a free track to download. Each artist is hand-selected by a team of editors who have an eye for picking out the best up-and-coming indie artists.
Free Music Archive – musically inclined curators provide articles on the latest news in the music industry, with a primary focus on independent artists, festivals and tech. Browse by genre or follow curators who share your taste for music. A great resource for podcasters, remix artists, and radio and video producers to obtain free and legal music hand-selected by established audio curators.
Indie Rock Café – a cool resource for Indie Rock lovers, featuring new hot artists, top ten songs and the best music videos. The place to be if you love being the one among your friends to hear the latest hits first. Free mp3 downloads are made available as much as possible.
Michael Le a tech and entertainment blogger for Bearshare.com and a variety of other music and entertainment websites.