Free Beats: The 5 Best Free Beat Marketplaces in 2023
Hiring a beat maker to write the backing track for a rap vocal can be a big ask. That’s why finding free beats to work your bars into is key for so many upstart rappers.
But, finding the best free beats can be time-consuming—it’s not easy to find good beats if you don’t know where to look.
That’s why we’re rounding up the best free beat marketplaces on the internet, so you can hone your search in quickly and find a beat that works for your style and sound.
We’ll also share some advice for using royalty-free beats in your recording and music production workflow.
Let’s get started!
What are free beats?
Free beats are beats made by up-and-coming music producers who are looking to find rappers to rhyme over their tracks. They typically are licensed as royalty-free music that can be used for free by the artists who sample or rhyme over them.
Free beats are usually found on online beat marketplace platforms where producers post their tracks and make them available to rappers looking for beats to rhyme over.
When a rapper finds a royalty-free beat that suits their style, they may record over the beat and release it as their own music without worrying about copyright and licensing issues.
Depending on most cases, the beat maker won’t need to be credited or compensated for any revenue generated with the completed track.
How royalty-free beats work
If you haven’t yet learned about royalties or how royalty-free beats work, you may want to brush up on your knowledge.
In short, royalty-free music comes in many shapes and forms, as do the agreements that come with using them.
In most cases, you can download the music or samples and use it however you want—but some marketplaces or producers may set out different agreements, especially for free beats.
That’s why it’s good to check the agreements set out by the beat marketplace you choose to grab free beats from.
How to use free beats
The purpose of any free beat is to find a matching rapper whose verses and rhymes fit the style and flow of the free beat.
But producing a finished track requires understanding the basic workflows of a Digital Audio Workstation and a handful of vocal recording and vocal production techniques.
From there, once you have a recording you’re happy with, you’ll likely need to go through a checklist of vocal mixing tasks like EQ, de-essing, vocal alignment, effects and more.
It also doesn’t hurt to have some audio editing skills to arrange the beat if you want to make any arrangement changes to the beat’s structure or your vocal recordings.
Don’t be afraid to get creative with any changes or ideas you can imagine adding to the beat—after the beat and final product are yours to play around with!
The five best marketplaces for free beats
There’s many places where rappers tend to look for free beats to rap over. But, not all marketplaces are made equal.
Here’s a few that stick out to us as good options for finding free beats.
LANDR Samples is our very own royalty-free sample marketplace.
There’s even a handful of great free beats to download and try over your own tunes.
You can also quickly construct your own free beats by layering samples and auditioning them together in Creator, LANDR Samples’ free beat-making tool.
It’s super easy to use and it’s fun to sift through the sample marketplace and craft quick loop ideas to rap over.
SoundCloud might be the original free-beat marketplace.
Tons of producers turn to the platform to host their beat creations, arguably the platform gave birth to the type beat trend in beat making.
Many beats are uploaded to the platform every day, so it can be hard to find tracks that fit your style.
Your best bet is to follow certain producers and make use of the platform’s tagging system and many playlists.
Of course, not all beats on SoundCloud are free or even available to be used.
So you’ll likely need to get in touch with the producer if you’re looking to rap over their track and release it, especially if the beat is not tagged as being free to use.
Fortunately, SoundCloud works well as a social media platform for musicians, so it’s not complicated to reach out and interact with your favorite producers.
BeatStars is a go-to beat marketplace for many rappers and producers.
While most of the beats on the platform require payment to own the rights to them, there are still many free beats available.
This is a platform that offers creators to offer different types of access to beats, some may not be entirely royalty-free and you may need to negotiate exactly how much of a finished release each party owns.
Ultimately, this platform is intended to help producers match with rappers looking for tracks to rhyme over, while taking care the legal and copyright considerations involved with these kinds of collaborations.
Similar to SoundCloud, YouTube has popped up as another popular online space for finding beats that producers upload to the platform.
You’ll find all kinds of type-beats and beats for different genres if you search and follow different producers on the platform.
Much like SoundCloud though, you won’t always be able to tell who’s beats are free, so you’ll need to get in touch with the producer to determine how and where their beats can be used.
Tracklib is a fair bit different from most sample and beat marketplaces.
It’s unique solution for solving sample clearance legalities has made it easy for producers and rappers to sample and use pre-released music (including many tunes from high-profile artists).
On Tracklib you’ll find a huge library of music—everything from modern pop tunes to deep cuts from 60s and 70s classics.
To get access you must purchase tiered credits that offer various levels of access to each song—but if you sign up for a free trial you get 15 free base tier credits.
Tracklib’s impressively curated library is heaven-sent for rappers looking to add their verses to well-produced beats or sample iconic music in their music with ease.
Find the beat
Collaborating on a track isn’t as hard as it once was. With the internet, you can connect with beat makers around the world and find the perfect producer to match your sound.
But, while the appeal of collaboration lies in the possibility of finishing a tune, agreeing on who owns how much of a finished work can be a deterring and complicated process.
Luckily marketplaces make this process so much easier, and in many cases offer exposure and connections to those getting their start in the form of free beats for anyone to use.
So, if you’re on a budget and looking for a free beat, consider checking out any of these platforms to find the track you’ve dreamed of for your next verse.
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