royalty free music for movies

Can You Use Royalty Free Music For A Movie?

If you are making movies or videos and are confused about the right music licence type for your project, you are not alone.

Like all considerate and diligent filmmakers, content creators or business owners, you will no doubt want to find the most affordable and suitable music for your projects, that is legal and safe to use.

However, it is a bit of a minefield out there, as the music industry and its terms such as “royalty-free music” is not regulated, therefore you might be finding conflicting information.

Typically, royalty free music can be used for a movie, however, it will depend on the terms of the music library supplying the music. All good royalty free music libraries will be clear on how you can use their music and will provide a music licence to prove you can use the music in your movie.

In a nutshell, royalty free music is a great, simple and affordable option as a movie soundtrack, but ensure that:

  1. Your chosen roylaty free music can be used for commerical use (i.e. business use)
  2. Your chosen royalty free music comes with a music licencse proving that you have the rights to use the music.
roualty free music for a movie

What is royalty free music?

The royalty free music definition, is music on which no further or future royalties must be paid, hence the term, “royalty-free”.

Why choose royalty free music over traditional music licensing options?

To understand why royalty free music is an appealing choice for movies and as background music for other content, you only need to look at how traditional music licensing works.

Traditional music licensing (before royalty free music) was and still is a tricky and complex process.

Typically, to license any piece of music or song, you must obtain two pieces of copyright:

  1. Syn Rights or Publishing Rights – these are the rights to the written song and typically owned by the composer or songwriter.
  2. Master Rights – these are the rights to use a particualr recording of the song.

To get these music rights cleared you may have to contact music publishers, record labels and composers which can be a long and tricky process.

A Pop star Singing: How Much to License A Famous Song

In addition, once you do have permission to use the music, you must then pay any performance rights fees (performance royalties) for any time the music is performed in public as part of your content. You need to check your countries local performance rights organisation for the right licence type for your needs.

Going through this traditional music licensing process is not much fun as it can be a long and tricky process.

In contrast, royalty free music is very simple. It is designed so that one fee covers everything.

You do not have to seek individual permission for publishing and master rights as they are typically included, and you do not need to pay any ongoing performance royalty fees, hence why it is called royalty free.

And this is why royalty free music is so popular and a good choice for your movies, as it makes the music licensing process super simple, quick and instant.

But as always, double check your royalty free music license contract from your chosen music supplier to ensure your royalty free music can be used in your content safely, because as I mentioned previously, royalty free music is not regulated, so each royalty free music library may have slightly different terms of use.

To download free royalty-free music which you can use as background music in your movies, which comes with a full professional licence, please see the button below.

To view the full music licence terms, for this free royalty free music follow the link below:

How can I use royalty free music legally in a movie?

To get the most of your royalty free music and ensure it can be used legally in your movie, ensure that your selected music ticks the following boxes.

Royalty Free Music for Movies Should…Why You Might Need This
1: Come with a written music licenceYou need a written music license to prove to whoever may ask that you have permission to use the music. All trustworthy music libraries will provide this.
2: Be approved for business useIt is safest to ensure your chosen music includes commercial or business use. If you are producing a movie, you don’t when it may make an income or how much.
3: Come with a receipt of purchase or proof of downloadA paper/email trail in the form of a purchase receipt or proof of download to verify that your music is valid and can be traced back to a date of purchase or download if ever asked.
4: Specify clearance for use in films, videos or moviesIt helps to have confirmation from the music library owner that their music covers the use of the music in films or movies. Most music libraries will state this, but if you don’t see it, just ask the music library to confirm.

Does royalty free mean that the music is free?

Royalty free music does not mean that the music costs nothing.

Music royalties are typically paid to a music artist when their work is performed in public or the music is broadcast to a public audience

Royalty free music simply means that musical royalties do not have to be paid.

Typically royalty free music costs a one-time upfront fee which will vary in price depending on the music library.

You can find high quality, “free” royalty free music such as my own site, which allows the use of the royalty free music in return for a music credit.

It is worth noting that I provide a full professional music licence with my free royalty free music, so you can prove to anyone who may ask that you have permission to use the music.

Where can I find free royalty free music for a movie?

It can be very tricky to find free royalty free music, that ticks the following boxes, so I have worked very hard to set up my own free royalty free music library that does all of the following:

  1. Comes with a full professional license so you can prove you have the right to use the music.
  2. An email trail, or proof of download so you can prove where you got the music from.
  3. High quality .WAV files so you can ensure your audio quality is as good as it gets.
  4. Full customer support in the even that you have questions, or if anything goes wrong.

In return for this free music service, I ask that you give music attribution, or a music credit in your content credits, or website. This helps tell others where you got the music from and spreads the word!

To go to my free royalty free music library that ticks all these boxes, please check out the link below:

So many people ask me why I have gone to such an effort to set up a professional but free royalty free music service.

The truth is, I get so many emails from users of my music thanking me for helping them out and helping others gives me a big buzz!

Sometimes, people show their support by “Buying Me A Coffee”, and all profits from this gets put back into the running of the site and producing new music.

I am hoping to grow my music library so it becomes a massive, reliable and free music source to help others so if you would like to help me in building this resource, check out my “Buy Me A Coffee” link below.

Related Articles

How Much Does It Cost To Use A Famous Song In Your Content?

Is It Legal To Use Copyrighted Music In A Student Film?

What is Royalty Free Music?

Can You Use Royalty Free Music On YouTube For Film Festivals

Can I Upload No-Copyright Music on YouTube?