If you consider your music tastes a little more adventurous than FM radio, you probably already know that the internet is a gold mine for good yet rather unknown music. It has allowed independent bands to flourish and often, they’re more than happy to put out some free MP3’s to get the word out about their songs. In this article, we’ll be taking a look at a handful of sources for free and legal MP3’s across all music genres.
eMusic’s Daily Download
Every day, this page features a new free MP3 that you can download without signing up. Since eMusic is a big name in online music, you can get some good freebies here as long as you’re into the genre that’s being featured.
FlyFi’s Free Music Fridays
Formerly named Goombah, this service not only brings you fifteen new MP3s every Friday but also suggests downloads based on what’s in your iTunes library. The downside is that FlyFi’s iTunes Helper is always running in the background, whether iTunes is active or not. You can opt in to FlyFi’s New Music Friday newsletter if you’d like to receive new MP3s via e-mail.
Last.fm’s Free Music Downloads
Aside from tracking your listen habits and streaming music, Last.fm also has a section of their site dedicated to free MP3s. You can filter their catalog by genre and – if you’re logged in – get personalized recommendations.
Do you remember Spiralfrog? They offered their users free DRM’ed downloads of mainstream music that was supported by advertising. While that service is long gone, we7 is a similar site with one big difference: their downloads are DRM-free 192kbps MP3s. There’s a big buzzkill however… it’s only available in the UK.
Bandcamp is a music hosting service that features bands on its homepage. And although not every song on the site can be downloaded for free, there are still more than enough freebies left to grab. If you’re excited about a band you found, know that their albums are usually available for download on a pay-what-you-want basis.
Even though Amie Street is a paid music service, their model is entirely different than iTunes’. Much like auctions, the prices of their MP3s rise when their popularity goes up. But here’s the good part: all songs start as free downloads, so if you’re fast you can get great albums absolutely free. Currently, you’re being offered a whopping 75 free songs upon signup. The site will also recommend songs to you by importing data from services such as iTunes, Last.fm, Pandora or Facebook, but of course it’s only as good as the algorithm behind it.
Insomnia Radio’s Daily Dose
This is one of many podcasts dedicated to bringing you new music every day. If you like a song you heard, you can head over to the Daily Dose website to check if there’s a free download available for that song. Similar podcasts include IndieFeed‘s genre-based podcasts and NPR’s The Current Song of the Day.