How to Pick the Right Music Licensing for Your Project

When you need production music, audio, or sound effects for a creative project, there are multiple types of music licensing available to you. These include full rights reserved, creative commons, and royalty-free music. Presented here is a run-down of these different types of licensing and how to pick the right one for your project.

Full Rights Reserved

In business and legal terms, music is a commodity and is protected by copyright law. This provides exclusive rights to copyright owners of the music. If you use or play music protected by copyright for a business or commercial venture, and haven’t paid for the rights to do so, you are infringing on the copyright.

If you opt to use full rights reserved music for your enterprise, you have to legally purchase a license. Composers and songwriters, as well as music publishers, customarily join one of three performing rights organizations that license musical works to the public. The three groups are the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP), Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI), and SESAC.

If your project is a high-profile entertainment or marketing venture that demands or incorporates high-profile or hit contemporary music you will probably have to license it. For example, a new production of an established Broadway musical requires that the rights to the songs and score be purchased by the producer.

Creative Commons

Creative Commons is an online platform that provides music for use, allowing the copyright holder to grant some of the rights to the public while retaining others. Creative Commons can act as a bridge between full rights reserved music and royalty-free music, protecting creative rights features for copyright owners, but also leveraging for those who want to purchase music rights for a limited use at a lesser cost.

Royalty-Free Music

Royalty-free “stock” music is free music that anyone can use. At, an online stock library of everything audio, you will find an unlimited supply of royalty-free music. For example, do you need a special style of music to convey a particular mood? Click the AudioBlocks “Music” icon and explore moods, genres, and instruments until you find what suits your project.

Need specific sound effects, like clanging coins, or the “breath of nature in the early morning?” Again, AudioBlocks is your answer. Now that you’ve got the picture, okay, now that you hear the music, (as well as sounds, effects, loops, whatever you need,) sign up and start downloading today.

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