Finding Free Music Downloads

Finding and Using Public Domain Music

The public domain is home to a great selection of classic musical works, just waiting to be used by you. Some of the greatest musical masterminds of all time have ended up in the public domain, which makes our jobs all that much easier. The more popular or well known a specific work is, the less that is required of us when it comes to marketing. This is due to the fact that great work sells itself, just like in other forms of Internet and/or affiliate marketing. For example, an in depth, well written ebook, created by one of the better known affiliate marketers sells 100 times as many copies at three times the price than that of its competition.

The marketing power is what makes public domain music such a great opportunity. Music can be found everywhere we go throughout our lives, there is often music playing as we ride the elevator to twentieth floor, we play it in our cars on the way to work and we can even hear it over the loudspeaker at many of our favorite markets and shopping destinations. Now all of this music may not be our favorite genre to listen to, but it is there. Sometimes you visit a web site and find a soft background music playing, this is often used as a calming or relaxing effect, because studies show that if you are relaxed while shopping you tend to stay and shop for longer than you would otherwise.

There are literally thousands of different ways to use the power of music, and throughout this section I will be showing you not only how to use some of it but also the best places to find those wonderful public domain masterpieces.

Some of the best places to find public domain music

The Internet has a large amount of places that can be used for finding public domain music. I will not be including all of them, due to space and the fact that some just don't include enough resources to mention, but that doesn't mean they are not valuable to you. Certain projects may require specialty pieces that are not found within the resources I have listed. If this is something you come across, don't overlook the power of the search engines. Search engines can really be a great starting point for finding new material, and I would recommend that you narrow your results down to get the most accurate results. You can do this by wrapping your search terms in quotation marks to return the best or most accurate search results.

Aside from the resources listed below you might also consider pulling sound clips and songs from public domain films and games for use in your commercial projects. For instance if you need the sound of car driving by, you would easily be able to clip that from a movie.

1. has a great categorized and searchable database of public domain music. The categories include popular hit songs from the early 1900's, patriotic songs, children's songs, Christian hymn's and Christmas songs. In my opinion this is probably one of the best places to start your search for public domain music.

2. is arguably one of the best places on the web for finding public domain sheet music. As of this writing they are home to over 7,500 publicly available works, and everything is nicely organized with plenty of information and history on the composers.

3. has a very large list of wonderful, profitable public domain music. To get started you can browse the listings by composer, genre and era to find your favorites. There are also some other helpful resources on the site to help get you headed in the right direction.

4. There is a nice collection of classical piano sheet music at The sheet music is available for free download.

5. Musopen is a nicely designed site filled classical public domain material. It is all provided copyright free as it should be. They have provided some great historical and background information about the composers, you can listen to the music right from the web page and most of them also have a link to download the sheet music for each beautifully composed masterpiece.

6. You can find over 1000 pieces of classical sheet music online at the Mutopia Project web site. Not only can you browse by composer and style, they also are the only service I have found that allows you to browse by instrument, which in my work has been a very valuable asset. They are frequently adding new works to the database, and should definitely be in your list of resources.

7. is another extensive database filled with classical sheet music. I will tell you the biggest draw back of this site is that they only allow you two free downloads per day, or unlimited if you pay twenty dollars a year. Although it is cheap enough, there are other places to go that you can download this music for free. However, you should take note as this is a great example for making money with your collection of public domain music.

8. Partners in Rhyme offers royalty free and public domain sound effects to download for your multimedia projects. This list includes animal sounds, domestic sounds, computer sounds, bird sounds and a whole lot more. These are great for use in web sites as roll overs and other projects.

9. The ezFolk library offers some great folk music found in the public domain. They have taken some of the work out for you by digitally reprinting these classic folk song books for you to view and download.

10. is a massive directory of free public domain sound effects and audio clips. You can find virtually every sound you may want right there in their database. You can search the database and browse by tags to find your favorites. This is a great place to turn to when working on multimedia projects as short audio clips are often used web site production.

Some ideas for using public domain music for financial gain

1. Web site production is one of the most commonly used methods for making money with public domain music, sound effects and audio clips. If used properly music provides a relaxing atmosphere for your sites visitors, and statistics show that if those visitors feel relaxed and comfortable they will stay and shop longer, which in turn means more money for you. Sound effects and audio clips are often used in the development of web sites and other forms of multimedia. They are commonly found in button rollovers and mouse clicks. These methods would be considered an indirect way of making money with public domain material.

2. Reproducing the works is another great way to make money with public domain music. The classical music would be a wonderful addition to any piano bar, upscale night club and even concert halls as well. If you are a performer at heart and musically inclined to do so, this is an excellent opportunity. You can even rework these classics and create your own renditions, to add a new flare to an otherwise already great piece.

3. Virtually every new computer these days comes with a cd burner, and many people never even use them. Turn your cd burner into cash by putting together albums or music collections and selling them online through eBay or your own web site, you may even consider selling them from your own brick and mortar store. Consider building special collections like a Christmas cd, Bach cd to narrow down the focus and marketing for one specific niche.

4. Create an ebook filled with sheet music for other musicians. Many people do not know what the public domain is or how to obtain the material, so this allows you to get a step up on the competition and offer something new and unique. Again this would be a great product for eBay or your own web site, with an excellent earning potential. You may also put together collections of a specific artist or music genre.

5. Dig up some old time radio shows, you know the type before they had television, and burn those to cd. Many people like to listen to these types of materials on long road trips and rainy days. They are very popular because they are something remembered by the older crowd, bring back those childhood memories for them, and put some cash in your pocket while your at it.

6. Build a web site or directory of current public domain music, for others to download and listen to or profit from. You can also convert the music into other formats, like the iPod and charge per download. The options for this method are really only limited to your imagination and may prove to be very profitable.

7. Use the music as backgrounds to film production or podcasts. This would be a pretty simple way to really add something special to your production work and would separate you from the rest of those podcasters out there.

8. Clip sound effects from music pieces and create your own sound effect or audio clip library. This would require the correct software, but is easy enough to do if you have the know how.

Examples of music and composers that are currently in the public domain

There are a bunch of great composers who have found their way into the public domain. As we all know with a great composer comes the great works they once created, so below is a list of some works and composers you can expect to find through your research.

1. Ludwig van Beethoven and his beautiful symphony and orchestra pieces.

2. The Yankee Doodle Boy performed by George Michael Cohan.

3. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is another famous composer of opera's and sonata's.

4. America the Beautiful performed by Katherine Lee Bates in 1895.

5. Johann Sebastian Bach is a world famous German composer, with some great masterpieces in his collection.

6. A classic children's favorite Baa Baa Black Sheep.

7. The Star Spangled Banner in all of its glory.