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Where may I find quality game music for reasonable fees? I'm willing to pay for the music, but I hope it is well done.

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closed as not constructive by Tetrad Dec 19 '12 at 3:22

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18 Answers 18

up vote 8 down vote accepted

http://www.jamendo.com/ is a decent place, no idea on prices though.

EDIT: Looks like an online game is $36.

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Thanks. Looks like under $50 for a couple I tried. –  BenMaddox Jul 22 '10 at 2:24
    
I should have looked at the price list first: pro.jamendo.com/en/product/licensing/prices –  BenMaddox Jul 22 '10 at 2:25
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Price is free, but you won't get any legal backing if it turns out the music you got licensed under CC-BY or CC-BY-SA (not -NC) was actually not legally licensed to you. Jamendo Pro lets you get some sort of certificate from Jamendo, as I understand it, that would protect you against performance rights organizations etc. –  Devin Jeanpierre Jul 22 '10 at 2:38
    
@As i understand the CC license, if it's an appropriate one, all you have to do is credit the author and you can use it where you want (you mentioned CC-BY, i think that's it) –  RCIX Jul 26 '10 at 9:49
    
The price for Online games was 30 euro a year, for Console and PC was 900 euro at time of looking. –  Tristan Warner-Smith Jul 26 '10 at 17:49
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That's a list of the paid sources from where can I find music/sound effects?, which see the link for more, including free sources.

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Aaaagh that site looks like a stack exchange network site but it's not! Curses! –  Omar Kooheji Aug 10 '11 at 15:51
    
@Omar, if you're referring to the last link/question, yes, unfortunately it used to be a SE 1.0 site. After the management transitioned to SE 2.0 only, UnityAnswers went with QATO for their software. It is a bummer, definitely. :( (I see someone updated the link, thanks, I forgot about this question). –  Cyclops Aug 10 '11 at 16:25
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Braid licensed tracks from MagnaTune. They have very easy licensing schemes, and you can choose to listen to the entire song on the website before you decide to commit to anything.

It can get expensive though. Quoted rates for a full song for 1 platform at 50k units without being the theme song or used in advertising is $3000.

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Thanks. For reference, several of the tracks were $1000 - $2000 for an unlimited License duration on Internet, Web Site, or Flash. I was actually looking for Flash games, which appear to be cheaper. –  BenMaddox Jul 22 '10 at 2:17
    
$1000 is way too expensive for a small developer. Try premiumbeat.com - $30/track, royalty free (volume of sale does not increase cost) –  bobobobo Sep 29 '12 at 18:02
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There are Jamendo, or you can hunt people on LinkedIn...

Also some people are just plain awesome, I recommend:

.

Virt: http://www.biglionmusic.com/ (several musicians envy this guy)

Emmet Cooke (not a god of music, but his price is cheap for what he do...) http://soundtrack.ie/

Alexander Brandon (from Deus Ex and JJ2 fame): http://www.alexanderbrandon.net/

Jeremy Soule (from Total Annihilation, Secret of Evermore): http://www.artistryentertainment.com/index.html <<< note here, Jeremy seemly joined some group, LOTS of artists here, if they all are of the level of Jeremy, you will only find good music!

Skyrunner (friend of mine, make excellent music, and needs some music job :P) http://www.braincontrol.org/music.php

.

Finally, this site is geared toward games, and is excellent on his own: http://gamecues.com/

.

If I remember more, I add later... (I make music too! But I will not sell you, or give... My music is bad enough on my own game :P But I DO know lots of musicians, I only not remember properly now)

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+ 1 for skyrunner. He's a god. (Don't tell him I said that...) –  Andreas Jul 22 '10 at 14:39
    
I wouldn't expect Jeremy Soule to be cheap, given his portfolio (TA as you said, Supreme Commander, Kings & Castles, maybe diablo? etc.) –  RCIX Jul 26 '10 at 9:51
    
Me neither, but his group maybe may not ask too much, but I really don't know, the people that make music for me from that list is Skyrunner and Emmet, mostly for technical reasons... Virt can do it too, but he is a bit more pricey than what I can pay (that is near to 0 actually... Emmet and Skyrunner do stuff for me more for the friendship and word-of-mouth) Also I have no idea of Siren's (Mr. Brandon) price, but whatever it is, it is worth it :D –  speeder Jul 26 '10 at 17:42
    
+1 for recommending PEOPLE and not stock music sites. If I could I'd +1 again for Jake (Virt). His track at the GDC demo derby this year kicked serious ass. –  michael.bartnett Apr 27 '11 at 18:26
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http://incompetech.com/
Great free to use music, as long as you include credit to the creator.

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I requested information on music for sale. –  BenMaddox Jul 23 '10 at 22:25
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Actually you requested information on music for 'reasonable fees' and we're 'willing' to pay. I find free to be a very reasonable price. And if you look under 'Scoring Services' on the website you can see that he also creates music for a fee.. –  Daniel Dimovski Jul 24 '10 at 0:13
    
Excellent selection of stuff. –  Kzqai Nov 26 '10 at 2:41
    
Surprisingly some of this stuff is not bad. I like their "search by feel" feature. –  bobobobo Sep 24 '12 at 0:09
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Haha, I thought this question was funny because I know the musicians are asking where all the game developers are.

Aside from plugging myself, if you're looking for an upstart wanting to specialize in game music, I'd suggest contacting the heads of the music departments of your local universities. Ask them if they've got any students who are focusing on game or film scoring; whenever I've had a gig and needed a player, the music heads have always been more than happy to get their students some professional experience.

PS use fancy musician lingo like "gig" to let them know you're serious.

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+1 This sounds like an excellent way to get in touch with musicians. –  Jonathan Hobbs Sep 30 '12 at 0:14
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As a matter of fact there are plenty of music options for an indie game developer on a tight budget.

1) Free (Creative Commons, Public Domain) music
2) Affordable Royalty-Free music

Check out the directory below for plenty of links to both 1) and 2).

http://www.safemusiclist.com - directory of safe and legal music resources for filmmakers, video producers, and game developers.

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Please hire game composer Joshua Morse. I've worked with him on two projects:

Bombada Onslaught!

And he's incredible. I can't recommend him highly enough.

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Just played Onslaught. Nicely done man :D –  Ólafur Waage Jul 28 '10 at 16:04
    
Hey, thanks a lot! :) –  richtaur Jul 28 '10 at 16:40
    
Yes, Onslaught is a fun arena shooter. Try NaaC too! –  bobobobo Sep 24 '12 at 0:30
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My name is Matt Poirier. I wrote the music and sound for Octix. If you need music then I could do it for cheap. Here is some of my music: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dpm97YjcDWY

:)

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Check out our website, App Tracks. We can do bespoke music, and there's also a library of some affordably priced loops too.

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There is a bunch of free music at OpenGameArt, and by free I mean completely free.

However the best option might be to get a actual musician into your team, having music tailored towards your game is a big plus to the feel of the game. And unless you ask a experienced professional it shouldn't be more costly than "buying" existing music.

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http://music.imphenzia.com/

This guy makes quality trance style music that's great for loops in games. You can request new tracks/loops to be made for fairly decent prices.

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You can shortish, but very cheap looping background music on Melody Loops. The browsing interface is very user-friendly.

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http://www.shockwave-sound.com/ is worth a look, it seems quite affordable for indies, if you can find tracks which suit your game.

They offer two tiers of pricing - a basic license for up to 5000 copies distributed, and a 'mass-market' license for more than that.

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Based on my recent (and first) experience with this, I would say do not hire a musician to make tunes for you if you are a small studio.

Typical cost is $100/minute of music, which is:

1) way too much to pay

2) You still have to do the back and forth of "Oh, make these changes" until he gets it right.

Both these things are serious drawbacks, and in the end, you might not even get what you want, and instead have to settle with something "OK".

It is much better, as a small developer, to browse existing selections and license from there.

  • PremiumBeat - $30-$50 a track (most are about 2 minutes). This is 6-8 times better than hiring a musician to custom-create a track for you.
  • Jamendo - I have not used this yet, but I plan to

* Will add more when I find more

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I would just post on a few game developers forums. Here are some:

Most have a jobs section or a portfolio section. Write what you are looking for, perhaps examples of the style you want, and give some hint of your price range.

I am a composer and I have been posting my portfolio everywhere trying to find developers who are in need of original music. Many composers will be willing to do it for free to expand their portfolio and in hopes of meeting new people.

Get your own music written for you! And help some writers grow in the process :)

And for shameless self promotion, you should check out my music ;)

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I really like Audio Network. I've never purchased music from them, but:

  • Most music comes with several variations, including 5-15 second "stings"
  • Tons of genres
  • Orchestral and sound effect libraries also available
  • Prices and licensing terms are clearly stated
  • Can preview all files on the site
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