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Where Can I Find Safe (Royalty Free) Music to Use For YouTube?

In this blog we are going to discuss safe music for youtube, the consequences of using copyrighted music, and where to find safe music for youtube.

When starting out on youtube, you may have thought that you can just use any music. On the other hand, you may have heard about how youtube is picky with the music and the music must be free of copyrights in order to be used on YouTube. Well, what is the right answer!!?! In this blog, we are going to discuss safe music to use for youtube, the consequences of using copyrighted music,  and where to find safe music for youtube that is free or available for purchase.

Different types of music on YouTube

When it comes to using music in your videos, you have to find either copyright free music or purchase a license to use the music in your videos. Royalty-free doesn’t mean copyright free. More on that below. If you hear a popular song on the radio that you want to use in your videos, this is what will happen.

When you use a popular copyrighted song, YouTube has a special program in their system that will automatically flag that music. If it doesn’t have a copyright, nothing will happen. You are fine. However, Youtube knows every copyrighted song, so it is impossible to get away with using copyrighted music.

If it has a copyright, you will be notified on your uploads screen. It will look something like this in the YouTube Studio (as of 2019).

shows copyright claim on youtube, safe music to use for youtube

Basically, you can leave it like this, but you won’t be able to monetize that video in the future. But there are some other possible outcomes of using copyrighted music. If you click on the words “copyright claim” then a box will come up with more information. In the box, it will tell you a few things. It will explain channel impact, video visibility, and monetization. The monetization will typically almost always be ineligible. In some videos, the copyright owner may decide to split the revenue with the video creator, but typically this is not the case and it is not advisable going into video creation with this plan in mind.

shows copyright summary and status from youtube, safe music to use for youtube

Under the “Monetization” box, there is another area that says “Actions.” You can click on “Actions” for more options. You can trim out that section from the video if it is a short section, you can replace the song with copyright free music or music that you have a license to use. Or another option is to mute that song in the video. If you do own the rights to that song, you can dispute it and have the copyright claim removed. 

copyright claim action options

More Information about using Copyrighted Music

Recently I collaborated with a friend on a video for her channel. When it came time to pick the music, I told her about a few websites with copyright free music. Some sites had free music and some you had to pay a license fee or subscription to use the music, but it would allow the video to be monetized. That being said, she kept coming back to me with music she liked that was copyrighted. Her excuse was,”Well, I can buy it off iTunes or Amazon for $1.99 or whatever the price was.” I had to explain that buying the song, is different than buying the rights to use that song. 

When you buy a song off an online website, you are just buying that song to listen to it. However, if you buy a song with the intention of using it in a video for youtube or commercial purposes where you could potentially earn income from that video, then you must buy a license. Buying a license for a pop song involves contacting the record company or whoever owns the license. Typically it can be very expensive and for the average YouTube creator, not an option. 

That being said, there are many alternatives available to YouTube Creators and we will get more into that below. 

Summary of using copyrighted music for youtube

It can be very tempting to use copyrighted music for YouTube because it is easy to find and popular. However, if you are serious about growing a youtube channel and eventually want to earn income from your videos, it is important to source music that is safe to use on youtube.

What is safe music to use for youtube?

First, what music is safe to use on youtube? Well, if the music is not copyrighted or has a creative commons license, it is generally safe to use for YouTube. I say generally safe because there are often requirements that come with copyright-free music. Often you have to put a specific attribution (who created the song and perhaps a website) in the video description. If you want free music that is guaranteed for YouTube, use the YouTube Music Library for music and sound effects. Although limited, when you are just starting out, it gets the job done and you can use it worry-free.

If you don’t know if a song has copyright, youtube has a nifty tool to check and find out. Check out the tool here.

Is royalty-free music safe to use? 

Royalty-free music sounds safe to use because of the word “free” in the title, but it isn’t safe in most cases. Royalty-free music is often still copyrighted music, without a royalty, but you still need to purchase a license to use the song. So, just because a song is called royalty-free, doesn’t mean it is safe to use without copyright claim issues. If you purchase the song license, then it should be fine to use.

Where can you find safe music to use for youtube?

These days websites are popping often with new options for finding copyright-free music. Most copyright-free music, that is of high quality requires the purchase of a license to use the song. Many websites often require the use of a monthly or yearly subscription. Often, when purchasing the license, the website will ask if it is for personal use such as a YouTube channel or another social media platform, or commercial use which means a business. If you make over $250,000 with your YouTube channel or another social media platform, using that song will be considered a commercial use. 

epidemic sound safe music to use for youtube
Epidemic Website

Here is a list of sources for safe music to use for Youtube: 

Free Sources

  1. YouTube Audio Library
  2. Audio Library Channel (not affiliated with the real YouTube Audio Library listed above) This is just a channel that releases copyright free music. Though, downloading their music can be tricky and sometimes links don’t work. 
  3. FREE and Purchase Bensound  A Website of free and licensable music for creators.

For Purchase or Subscription Below

  1. Envato Market  Affordable licenses for royalty-free music. 
  2. Epidemic Sound  Easily the most popular website for creators to find music for youtube. It is available using a monthly or yearly subscription.
  3. Great music for cinematic YouTubers or wedding videographers
  4. Sound Stripe Becoming more popular with YouTubers and Videographers and also has sound FX library. 
  5. MusicBed has various types of subscriptions and licensing options available. 

sounds strip website safe music to use for youtube
Soundstripe Website

So those are 8 of the most popular options out there, but there are even more websites with royalty-free music for use with a license purchase. Let us know in the comments, what music do you use? 

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