How To License Music For Your YouTube Channel.

Updated: Mar 20, 2021

Congrats, you finally pulled the trigger and started your YouTube channel! You've shot and edited the footage for your first video and now you're ready to add some background music to take it to the next level. You go through your fire playlist and choose one of your faves and add it to the video and then upload it. Next thing you know BOOM! You're hit with a copyright claim and your video gets flagged for infringement! Sounds scary right? Don't worry, in this article we'll discuss ways to avoid this nightmare from happening and how to properly license music for your YouTube channel - but first we must briefly discuss the topic of copyright.

There Are Two Main Types Of Copyright.

The first is the Sound Recording which is the actual audio that was recorded - whether it was recorded in a home studio, garage or even on your phone. This copyright is usually held by the performer, producer or engineer. The second is the Music Composition which refers to the music and lyrics which may be written on paper or captured electronically. This copyright usually belongs to the songwriters and composers. If you wrote the music and lyrics AND recorded it yourself, you are the owner of both copyrights.

You May Need To Get Legal Permission.

Whenever you want to use a song that you did not write or a sample of a recording that you do not own, you must first get "permission" in the form of a "license." The license is an agreement that allows the rights holder to grant you permission to use the song in your video.

If you're just looking for something simple like a sound effect or background music, you can browse the YouTube audio library for royalty free music and sound effects.

What If I'm Doing Cover Songs?

If you are planning to cover a song please remember that most songs are owned under a composition copyright. Please check the YouTube music policies page to find out which copyright holders allow others to cover their songs on YouTube.

What Will Happen If I Use Music Without A License?

Content ID is an automatic system that scans YouTube videos for music rights held by artists, labels and publishers. If your video uses music that is copyrighted by someone else, they may be able to:

  • Have the video taken down

  • Prevent you from monetizing your video

  • Monetize your video for themselves

To avoid these actions being taken against you, it is best to make sure that you use only music that you are the exclusive owner of or purchase a license to use the music that fits your video.

Where Can I Go To License Music For My Videos?

We thought you'd never ask! If you want to purchase a license to use music for your YouTube video you can check out our music licensing platform: where we offer an online catalog of pre-cleared music for a nominal fee. On our website you can filter our catalog by genre or mood or even bpm to find the perfect song for your video! When you're ready to purchase the license just click the buy button and select the "Personal" license option for your video. Once you purchase the license you will immediately receive an email with the song you selected and the license granting you permission to use the song in your video!


Vybbes is a black-owned music licensing platform that is dedicated to helping you #TellYourStory We Are A Growing Community Of Composers, Artists, Music Supervisors And Content Creators From Different Cultures And Backgrounds, That Believe In The Power Of Music To Help Tell Stories That Matter. ​

As A Black-Owned Platform We Especially Love To Highlight Black And Brown Stories Of Love, Hope And Positivity!

Our Team Is Committed To Going Above And Beyond To Make Sure That You Have The Right Music For Your Project, Even If That Means Creating It From Scratch! Follow us on social media pages @vybbes_music #Sync #VideoProduction

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