10 Best Sources for Free BG Music for YouTube Videos

Navigating bg music for YouTube can be a minefield of copyright concerns. Look no further, as this guide provides the safest havens to download free bg music, along with brief insights into the licensing that gives you peace of mind. Perfect for YouTubers, this intro sets the stage for an informative journey through legal, free music resources.

Key Takeaways

  • You need permission to use most music in your YouTube videos due to copyright laws, but many platforms offer free tracks with terms like non-commercial use, regional rights, and attribution requirements.
  • Public domain and royalty-free music are cost-effective options for creators, with public domain being free and clear of licensing fees, while royalty-free requires a one-time upfront payment for usage.
  • Creative Commons licenses offer varying degrees of usage rights for music, and proper attribution is essential to avoid legal issues. Platforms like Artyfile, YouTube Audio Library, and Jamendo provide abundant music choices for creators.

Understanding Music Licensing for YouTube Videos

If you’re a YouTube content creator, you’ll know that adding the perfect soundtrack to your videos can make them stand out from the crowd. But did you know that music licensing is a crucial step for using these tracks legally? You see, copyright in music grants exclusive rights to creators, and to use their music, you need their permission through licensing. Failure to do so can lead to copyright infringement, which can not only result in legal action but could also see your content removed from YouTube.

But don’t worry, it’s not all doom and gloom. There are plenty of resources available that offer free music for YouTube videos. However, it’s important to understand the terms and conditions of these resources to avoid any restrictions on usage. For instance, some music may be free for personal use, but not for commercial use. Similarly, there may be regional rights restrictions and attribution requirements that you need to be aware of. Some popular resources for free music for YouTube videos include:

  • YouTube Audio Library
  • Free Music Archive
  • Bensound
  • Incompetech
  • Epidemic Sound

Make sure to check the terms and conditions of each resource before using the music in your videos.

Public Domain

Public domain music refers to works not protected by copyright and can thus be freely used for any purpose without permission or payment. These compositions include a variety of genres, from classical works by composers such as Bach and Beethoven to age-old songs that have entered the public domain due to the lapse of time. Typically, music enters the public domain around 60-70 years after the death of the original artist.

Utilizing public domain music removes the need for licensing fees or royalties, making it a cost-effective solution for content creation. Plus, using public domain music also eliminates the risk of copyright strikes, which can be a boon for YouTube creators.

Creators seeking culturally significant music without the hassle of obtaining sync licenses can use public domain tracks that evoke a similar feel. The Public Domain (CC0) license on platforms like Free Music Archive allows for unrestricted use of tracks, whether for non-commercial or commercial purposes, avoiding the need to deal with copyright music.

Royalty-Free Music

Now, let’s talk about royalty-free music. It’s a practical alternative to licensed copyrighted works, offering clearance for commercial use without the ongoing license fees. When you purchase royalty-free music, you make an upfront payment and can then use the music for both personal and commercial purposes with no recurring fees. Sounds like a good deal, right?

Once you’ve made that one-time purchase, it might seem like you can use the music repeatedly in various videos across platforms such as YouTube, Vimeo, and social networks, but this is a common misconception. The truth is, there is no such thing as truly 'royalty-free' music, as there is always an author who retains rights as the licensor. This means that the licensor can, at any point, change the terms or retract permission, potentially rendering the music you've used in your video illegal overnight. Therefore, while royalty-free licenses may appear less restrictive, they are not without risk, and it's crucial to stay informed about the terms and understand that they can change.

Creative Commons Licenses

Finally, let’s delve into Creative Commons licenses. These licenses range from the most permissive (CC BY) to the most restrictive (CC BY-NC-ND), each affecting how music can be used, shared, and modified in YouTube videos. Artists have the option to choose from multiple Creative Commons licenses for their music, including:

  • Attribution
  • ShareAlike
  • Non-Commercial
  • NoDerivatives
  • Public Domain (CC0)

To use Creative Commons music legally, YouTube creators must adhere to specific license conditions, which may include attributing the artist and respecting the permitted uses of the music. Additionally, it’s crucial to avoid mixing up license types to prevent legal and financial issues. These licenses provide flexibility for YouTube creators by allowing them to choose music that fits the legal and budgetary constraints of their projects.

Top 10 Websites for Free Background Music for YouTube

Difficult, very difficult... It would be easy to simply list 10 well-known platforms, but we can't do that with a clear conscience. The important thing is

1. if you choose cheap royalty free music you have to be aware that you are walking on thin ice and you can lose your claim at any time.

2. if you choose professional music such as Artyfile, Universal music, or other music from professional real composers, you buy a licence and can be legally sure that you can use this music legally. 

3. whether you are also allowed to monetise is another question, sometimes yes, sometimes no and if yes NOW does not mean that this will be possible tomorrow. see Universal in the TikTok dispute and thousands of Youtube video creators who suddenly had to wonder why they are no longer allowed to monetise.

However, here are some websites where you can find royalty free music for your projects:

Epidemic Sound

Epidemic Sound is a music service provider that caters specifically to YouTube creators. They have a library full of generic tracks that are perfect for non-professional YouTube video backgrounds. With various licensing options, including single-track licenses starting at $99, personal subscriptions at $144/year, and enterprise subscriptions which are quote-based, Epidemic Sound offers a wide range of choices for different needs.

Plus, their search features enable users to find the right track easily, making the process of choosing background music a breeze. But here too, even if the use of music is guaranteed, nobody can promise you that this will not change and whether you can monetise your video at all, because you have opted for royalty free music, there is NO legal certainty, because anyone on the "royalty free playground" can register your used music under Youtube Content ID and your legal use and monetisation is over.

YouTube Audio Library

Did you know that YouTube has its own audio library? The YouTube Audio Library is a collection of music tracks that are freely available for use. With over 150,000 free tracks, you’re bound to find something that fits your video. While the tracks are available for free, some of them do require attribution as per their Creative Commons licenses. But you just have to be satisfied with a cheaply generated selection of music

The library also provides user-friendly search functions that allow you to easily find music for your projects. So, why not take advantage of this resource right on the platform where you’ll be uploading your videos?


Next up, we have AudioJungle. This platform offers a vast assortment of royalty-free music tracks ideal for YouTube video background music. Here are some key features of AudioJungle:

  • Tracks start at the affordable price of just $1, making it accessible to a wide range of users.
  • While specific details about AudioJungle’s quality assurance process aren’t provided, it ensures that every track on the platform meets a certain standard of quality.
  • So, you can rest assured that you’re getting good value for your money.

Even in situations where music use is assured, there's no guarantee that the terms won't change, impacting your ability to monetize your video. Choosing royalty-free music does not provide legal certainty. This is because anyone participating in the "royalty-free playground" has the ability to claim your chosen music through Youtube's Content ID system, potentially ending your lawful usage and monetization opportunities.


SoundCloud is a popular music streaming platform that also offers a massive library of more than 265 million songs from global artists. The music is categorized under various rights, including All Rights Reserved, Some Rights Reserved, and Creative Commons, each affecting how music can be used in YouTube videos.

With such a vast selection to choose from, you’re bound to find the perfect soundtrack for your YouTube video on SoundCloud.


Bensound features a diverse array of royalty-free music, catering to a variety of genres and moods suitable for YouTube creators. The website offers a user-friendly search function that enables users to quickly and efficiently find the type of music they need for their videos.

Plus, Bensound’s licensing options are flexible, including a free Creative Commons license for personal and commercial projects with attribution, and premium licenses for more extensive use without attributing the creator.

But also here: Even with royalty-free music, there's no guarantee against changes that could affect video monetization. Anyone can claim your music through Youtube Content ID, jeopardizing your legal usage and revenue.


Last but not least, we have Artyfile. This revolutionary platform stands out in the realm of music for films, videos, and content creation, offering a meticulously curated collection of high-quality music. Artyfile sources its masterful compositions from globally recognized composers and musicians, with recordings produced in prestigious studios such as Abbey Road Studio in London.

Artyfile's unique no-subscription model caters to professionals who prioritize quality over quantity, allowing the purchase of individual tracks without the commitment of a subscription. This feature is especially beneficial for filmmakers and advertising agencies in need of exceptional music.

Additionally, Artyfile is breaking new ground with its Limited Edition music NFTs, granting customers the opportunity to not only use but also invest in the music. This innovative financial model lets consumers own shares in the songs they purchase, earning a slice of the revenue generated from streaming and sync rights.

With a brand personality that exudes professionalism, education, and innovation, Artyfile maintains a sophisticated yet approachable tone. It's a brand that resonates with professionals seeking reliability, educated individuals looking for expertly crafted compositions, and innovative thinkers who value unique investment opportunities.

Artyfile is more than a music marketplace; it's a movement that champions the intrinsic and monetary value of quality music. By offering both artistic and financial value, Artyfile aims to set a new industry standard, shifting the focus from mass-produced music to carefully crafted compositions. Choosing Artyfile isn't just about listening to music; it's about experiencing, owning, and investing in it, making a statement that you value quality, innovation, and the true essence of music.

Tips for Choosing the Perfect Background Music

Now that we’ve explored the top 10 websites for sourcing free background music, let’s delve into some tips for choosing the perfect soundtrack for your YouTube videos. The first thing to consider is the genre of your background music. This should align with the emotion you wish to evoke in your viewers. For instance, cinematic music could be used to create a sense of grandeur, while acoustic music could invoke feelings of empathy.

Other factors to consider are the overall tone and mood of your video, the tempo of your background music, and the quality of the track. The music should enhance your content, whether it needs to be energetic or relaxing. The tempo should complement the pace of your video’s content, and the volume levels should be balanced so as not to overpower any dialogue.

Lastly, always aim for high-quality free music that maintains the video’s overall quality and aligns with the intended tone and style.

How to Properly Attribute Music in Your YouTube Videos

Now that you’ve chosen the perfect track, it’s important to attribute it properly in your YouTube videos. Creative Commons tracks, such as those from SoundCloud and dig ccMixter, are available for free use provided they are attributed correctly according to the license specifications. Attribution for tracks licensed under Creative Commons requires appropriate credit, a link to the license, and an indication if changes were made.

To credit music properly, include a link to the artist’s or composer’s website or social media in the video description. This not only gives credit where it’s due but also ensures all legal permissions for the music are obtained to avoid copyright claims. YouTube’s Content ID system can automatically identify copyrighted music, leading to possible monetization, muting, or blocking of the video. However, creators have the option to dispute claims if they have permission, thus avoiding copyright strikes.

Overcoming Common Challenges with YouTube Background Music

We’ve covered a lot of ground, but let’s touch on some common challenges YouTube creators face when it comes to background music. One of the major concerns is copyright infringement and potential monetization limitations. But guess what? Using public domain music allows you to circumvent these concerns. That’s right, public domain music is free from copyright restrictions, making it a safe option for YouTube creators.

Another option is royalty-free music. This provides YouTube creators with a lawful and financially sustainable way to include music in their videos without facing copyright strikes. In the event of a Creative Commons license breach, it is recommended to contact the infringing party directly or seek legal advice. There are resources available, such as a ‘Standard License Violation Letter’, to assist creators in these situations.

That sounds good, but it's not quite the truth: Even if the use of music is guaranteed, nobody can promise you that this will not change and whether you can monetise your video at all, because you have opted for royalty free music, there is NO legal certainty, because anyone on the "royalty free playground" can register your used music under Youtube Content ID and your legal use and monetisation is over. 


We’ve covered a lot of ground in this blog post, from understanding music licensing for YouTube videos to exploring the top 10 websites for sourcing free background music. We’ve also shared tips for choosing the perfect background music and how to properly attribute music in your videos. 

You just have to realise that if you use royalty free music for youtube videos, you are entering legally uncertain territory. This may not be a problem for non-professional use and videos. But if you want to create professional, important videos and content, you should definitely only use licensed music from real professional composers, as offered by Artyfile, for example. Here you acquire all the necessary rights you need and thus obtain legal certainty.

As you can see, the world of music licensing doesn’t have to be confusing or daunting. With a bit of knowledge and the right resources, you can find the perfect soundtrack for your YouTube videos and enhance your content like never before.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you have background music in a YouTube video?

Yes, you can have background music in a YouTube video by using licensed songs from YouTube's Audio Library, which can be used in monetized videos. If you don't have permission, consider finding royalty-free songs from online music libraries.

Where do I get free background music for YouTube videos?

You can get free background music for your YouTube videos from sources like the YouTube Audio Library, Free Music Archive, and Jamendo. These platforms offer copyright-free and royalty-free music for your content.

What is music licensing, and why is it important for YouTube videos?

Music licensing is crucial for YouTube videos as it involves obtaining permission to use music in your content. Using copyrighted music without permission can result in legal action and content removal. Be mindful of licensing to avoid any issues.

What is public domain music, and how can I use it for my YouTube videos?

Public domain music is not protected by copyright, so you can use it freely in your YouTube videos without worrying about copyright strikes. It's a cost-effective option for content creation.

How does royalty-free music work?

Royalty-free music works by requiring an initial payment for a license, allowing you to use the music across multiple videos without further fees, but with certain usage conditions. But you just have to knowe that if you use royalty free music for youtube videos, you are entering legally uncertain territory.