YouTube has released a new service offering an audio library of free music for use with any video (whether it’s hosted on YouTube or not). The music library currently holds ‘more than 150’ royalty tracks for to choose from. Here’s some press from the YouTube creators blog:
“When you’re uploading a video to YouTube, knowing where to search for the perfect song can be tricky. We do our best to provide creators with tools to enhance their content and to simplify this process, but we wanted to make it even easier to find great music for your videos.
That’s why we’re launching the YouTube Audio Library today. Any YouTube creator now has access to more than 150 royalty-free instrumental tracks you can use for free, forever, for any creative purpose (not just YouTube videos). You’ll find a link to the library in your video manager and you can browse the tracks by mood, genre, instrument and duration. The tracks can be downloaded as 320 Kbps MP3 files.“
There are many online resources for audio libraries nowadays, including rival video service Vimeo. Most of which you’ll struggle to get completely free music tracks from (both in terms of cost and royalties), so it’s refreshing to see a reputable company offering this service with no strings attached.
However, such an open platform has its drawbacks. 150+ tracks is a very small number for an audio library, it’s only a matter of time before the more popular tracks finding their way onto every video soundtrack.
Another is the implementation of the audio library. Whilst it’s very early doors for the service (I expect future updates to invalidate some of the following remarks) it doesn’t make it easy to find ‘that perfect track’. The simplistic functions – Duration, Genre Play and Pause mean a lot of time would be spent sifting through music to find the one your after.
Paid services certainly (quite rightly so) make the browsing task more efficient. Audio Network’s waveform view is very handy for plotting tracks before you even listen, as is the Marmoset Arc feature for predicting the pace of a track, as is well developed search criteria on The Music Bed, for accurately narrowing your options. It would be nice to see some of these functions filtering into YouTube’s free library. No doubt over time the library will increase in size and we’ll be provided more features.