If you are a country music fan, you may be able to download some of the most popular country songs right from your local public library for free. If your library carries a service called Freegal, you can download music to keep – and it’s completely legal.
Free Country Music Downloads
The Freegal (free + legal = Freegal) service provides a free way to download hundreds of thousands of songs – many of them country songs – from the Sony music catalog. Since the library pays for the service, library patrons can download free, legal copies of the song to keep.
“But wait,” you say. “Even if I can download music, won’t it have to be “returned” in two or three weeks?” Nope. Freegal is an entirely new model for libraries. They pay a fee which entitles them to a certain number of downloads, which they then give to their patrons for free. Once you download a song from Freegal, it’s yours to keep. Read about it in this article from Library Journal http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6723898.html
The downloading process is easy: You simply log onto Freegal using your library’s website and the code on your card. You can then browse the collection alphabetically or by genre and search for specific artists, composers, albums or songs. You choose a song, decide where to put it on your computer, and click to download. There’s no other software to install. The files are MP3 with no DRM.
“There’s got to be a catch,” you say, and it’s true, there are some limits on what you can do. It’s a fairly new service, and not all libraries carry it. A quick search of Google shows there are well over 50 library systems that have it, including New York, Orange County, Calif., Scottsdale Ariz., Seattle and Nashville, Tenn. Check online or call your closest library to see if they have Freegal. The libraries also set a limit to the number of downloads you can have, a number that varies from library to library. My library allows three downloads per week, which may not seem like a lot, but if you add up the yearly total, I can get 156 downloads per year, absolutely free!
Do They Really Have Good Songs For Free?
You may be wondering if Freegal really carries contemporary country music, or if it’s just some of the obscure, older stuff.
Although Sony doesn’t carry every contemporary country artist, they do have many of the country chart toppers. Here is a sampling of their most popular artists, along with their most popular songs, just to give you an idea of some of the big-name acts they carry.
Remember that this is just a sampling. If an artist is mentioned below, chances are that you can download every song they have released.
If you don’t see your favorite artist listed below, be sure to search them on Freegal. Since there are thousands of artists in the catalog, you might be able to find yours there.
Miranda Lambert for Free
Available songs include: “The House That Built Me,” “Kerosene,” “More like Her,” “Gunpowder and Lead,” “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,” “Only Prettier,” “White Liar,” “Love Song,” “Heart Like Mine,” “Time to Get a Gun,” and more than 50 more.
Brooks & Dunn for Free
Available songs include: “Honky Tonk Truth,” “Boot Scootin’ Boogie,” “He’s Got You,” “Hard Workin’ Man,” “Neon Moon,” “You Can’t Take the Honky Tonk out of the Girl,” “Play Something Country,” “Rock My World (Little Country Girl),” “Red Dirt Road,” “She Used to Be Mine,” and lots more.
Carrie Underwood for Free
Available songs include: “Before He Cheats,” “Jesus Take the Wheel,” “Temporary Home,” “Mama’s Song,” “Cowboy Casanova,” “I Told You So,” “So Small,” “Wasted,” and many, many more.
Kenny Chesney for Free
Available songs include: “No Shirt, No Shoes, No Problem,” “You Had Me from Hello,” “She Thinks My Tractor’s Sexy,” “Don’t Blink,” “Ain’t Back Yet,” “Better As a Memory,” “The Good Stuff,” “Summertime,” and dozens more.
Brad Paisley for Free
Available songs included: “American Saturday Night,” “Whiskey Lullaby,” “He Didn’t Have To Be,” “Then,” “Mud on the Tires,” “I’m Gonna Miss Her (The Fishing Song),” “I’m Still a Guy,” “Alcohol,” “When I Get Where I’m Going,” “Start a Band,” and 100 more.
Kelie Pickler for Free
Available songs include: “Best Days of Your Life,” “Red High Heels,” “Rocks Instead of Rice,” “Small-Town Girl,” “Wild Ponies,” and all the other songs from her albums.
Most of these artists’ albums are available through Freegal. Just remember you may need to download them just a few songs at a time. It depends on what kinds of limits your library has put on this free service.
It’s definitely worth checking your local library to see if you can access Freegal for downloading country music. Then you can get your tunes free, easily and legally!