For several years now there has been a constant battle between artists and labels. Money-hungry corporate music labels take a massive percentage of all album sales, while the artists who actually wrote and composed the songs often get a pathetic spiff of each purchase. So, naturally, artists tend to rely heavily on ticket and merch sales.
With the internet becoming what it has, record labels and musicians also have to deal with people downloading music. I’m sure we all remember the ridiculous Napster/Metallica debacle? I’m not going to get into morals and ethics about whether or not you should or shouldn’t download music, that’s not what this website is about.
Instead, I’m going to highlight the absolute best way to get free music that doesn’t deal with any sort of legalities: iTunes.
Yes, you heard (or rather, read) me correctly, iTunes. The iTunes store has a section that offers free music weekly. I’ve actually discovered a lot of really great music that way. Artists like Tycho, Nneka, The Kills, Jets Overhead, Outasight, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., and so many more!
Recently, indie rock titans Wilco released their latest album “Star Wars” on iTunes.
Wilco has been known to have disputes with record labels. They’ve even written a song about it entitled “I Love My Label.” The band has released music for free before, directly from their website. This time, they took a page out of U2’s book and released “Star Wars” completely free of charge right on iTunes.
There are a number of musicians that are wholly against downloading music. Like Atreyu, for example. But, let’s be honest, Atreyu hasn’t done anything of significance in quite sometime, so maybe that’s a poor example.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, however, we have artists like Bare Naked Ladies and even Trent Reznor (of Nine Inch Nails) advocating the right to download music and abstain from major corporate labels.
At the end of the day, whether or not you download music is entirely up to you, but I do encourage my readers to really look into the “Free on iTunes” section. It updates with new music every Tuesday, and they always have a great variety of song styles.
Just remember, support your favorite artists so they can keep putting out the music you love. Go to their shows, promote them on social media, and buy their merch either from their websites or, better, their shows.