While there is no shortage of sites that offer mp3 downloads, both legal and illegal, the concept of a site for legitimate free mp3 downloads that is completely supported by ads remains elusive. The latest site to take a stab at making this model work is We7, a new site with a prominent backer in the form of no other than Peter Gabriel.
Currently the site is still in the early stages and the range of (DRM-free) mp3s available for download is still quite small (I counted 8 artists and 19 tracks, but I guess you have to start somewhere).
If you’re looking to get your music distributed be sure to check them out; part of We7’s vision is to showcase new musical talent (Oh and by the way, We7 artists get paid).
Update: While stile available, We7 seems to have gone the way of many services before it. The service has added country region restrictions which block access to it for users from those countries.
It seems kinda strange that the preview mode of the service is still available for all users. Just head over to http://subscription.we7.com/#/ to access it. Songs in that mode play for 30 seconds only, which means that it is not really an option for users who are looking for a service that is providing access to full music.
We7 users currently have access to over 8 million songs. Registered users get access to full Internet radio, station personalizations, song requests and radio on their mobile. Premium members on top of that get an ad-free listening experience, unlimited on-demand music, personal playlist access and premium-only contents.
Update 2: After five years, the situation has not really changed. We7 is still country-locked, but you can still use the loophole linked above to access the contents of the site from a country that would otherwise be not allowed access.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.