Music is one of the hot topics on the Internet. The battle between filesharers, privacy advocates and representatives of the Music Industry is still waging. What most users do not realize that there are lots of ways to increase the music collection free and legally.
Before you go ahead and make use of the methods described in this article I would like to remind you that those methods are legal in some countries but not all. You still have to check if it's ok in your country before you download 1000+ songs a day using the methods listed below.
The chance that you get caught ranges from slim (Music Search Engines) to virtually impossible (Internet Radio) though and is way below the chance of getting caught trading music in P2P networks.
The methods are listed alphabetically and I only described a few services and programs to download music. If you do some research you will find many more applications and services.
Free music has a bad reputation on the Internet. That is undeserved and can be mostly attributed to spam and malicious software. If you look around a bit you find massive amounts of free music that can be downloaded to the local hard drive.
Jamendo is surely one of the top locations for free music on the Internet. Jamendo is currently offering more than 11000 albums on their website. Direct download and Bittorrent downloads are available and the whole site concept deserves a larger userbase than they currently have. It pretty much works after an "if you like the artist visit his website and buy some merch or CDs" system.
Jamendo is not the only way to get your free share of music. I have collected a large list of possibilities called the music list some time ago. Most if the websites and services are still in existence these days.
That's probably one of the easiest ways to download music from the Internet. Thousands of Internet Radio stations cater to the music listening taste of almost everyone. From metal over gospel to christian, there is a good chance that you find a station that is playing exactly the music that you like.
That's a combo for super-easy recordings of multiple Internet Radio streams at once. The advantage of this method is that it runs automatic after pressing the start recording button. Just sit down and relax while the software programs download song after song to your hard drive.
Another advantage is that you pick the stations which means that you can include factors like bitrate in the selection process. Each station plays usually between 15-20 songs per hours. That's between 360 to 480 per Internet Radio station and day. Imagine recording multiple stations simultaneously. The only real limit is your Internet connection.
Streamripper tries to save songs correctly if the Internet Radio Station sends those information. You end up with music that uses the song and artist as the name and some proper tags.
A great directory to start looking for interesting Internet Radio Stations is the Shoutcast directory.
Music communities, like Last.fm and partially also MySpace, offer a vast amount of music that can be listened to online. They also lack direct download features but the usual tools work pretty well to download music from those websites.
The Last Ripper is for example an excellent tool to Save Last.fm music. Grab++ and Download Helper should also work wonders on most sites.
It is usually not a problem to download the songs. If nothing helps a direct audio recording tool like Audacity does the trick. That tool can record all sounds that the user can hear, a last resort so to speak.
Music Search Engines:
Music Search Engines like SeeqPod or MP3zy crawl the Internet for audio related content which gets added to their vast database. The results are presented like any other search on regular search engines like Google with the difference that they can be played directly in the browser window.
They usually do not offer ways to download the music that can be played directly. It is however usually not a problem to download the streams that are offered directly to the computer. A good combination is using the software Grab++ which is part of Orbit Downloader, a free download manager that supports downloading from many media sites directly.
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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.