FreegalMusic is a program that allows you to download and keep MP3 files. It works through the library system and you get 3-6 MP3 files per week! It’s super cool and not many people know about it.
Freegal can also be really tricky to navigate, so this post will help you master the service!
- What is Freegal?
- How Freegal Works
- How many downloads do I get on Freegal?
- Finding the Music You Want
- Does my library have Freegal?
- Is it legal? And is it really free?
- Why Freegal Might Not Be a Good Fit
- Cool Content on Freegal for Yoto Cards
What is Freegal?
The name Freegal stands for "free and legal music." That's how you pronounce it too: rhymes with legal.
They have over 18 million songs in more than 200 different genres. There are around 200,000 new songs added each month, so you should be able to find anything you want. They have over 2.5 million users!
Freegal is a resource paid for by libraries. To use Freegal Music, all you need is your library card and library pin number.
The downside is that Freegal Music is limited to just the patrons of the libraries that subscribe to their services. So your local library has to be a part of Freegal Music for you to use it.
If your library is subscribed, you'll be able to stream and download music or just download.
How Freegal Works
Since the service is free, you do have a limit for streaming time and downloads. If you are using the service on your desktop computer (or through a browser on any device), you'll see the download limit and streaming time you have left in the top left-hand corner of the web page. If you're using the app, you can check your download limit in the settings.
The allotted streaming time resets every day at 12 a.m. (CT). The download limits will reset every Monday at 12 a.m. (CT).
How many downloads do I get on Freegal?
How many downloads you get depends on your library. You'll have to see what their contracted agreement is with your library
My library gives me 5 downloads a week. Remember, the downloads reset every Monday morning. They DO NOT roll over to the next week. So if you don't use your downloads that week, you can't use them the following week and have "extra" downloads.
There are no reminders to download or anything. So if you want to download content, you need to keep track of it yourself and make sure you use up all your downloads before your limit resets each Monday.
Totally legal hack: If you want more downloads, you can use your kids' cards too! Chances are you're getting music for them, so you can absolutely use all of the library cards in your house and get the downloads for each card.
Finding the Music You Want
Freegal Music can be a little tricky to navigate and is still limited in the music they have. There are a lot of artists they don't have available, but hopefully that will change in the future.
You can search for specific artists or songs as well as browse through the curated content on the homepage. Freegal's homepage features different playlists, artists, and albums, as well as new music they've added and what is trending.
Does my library have Freegal?
To see if your library has Freegal, simply go to the website and click the red "Log In" button in the top right-hand corner. If it's your first time logging in, it will ask you to either put in the name of your library or search by zip code.
If there is a library in your area that is subscribed to Freegal Music, they will pop up. Select your library, and then it will prompt you to add your library card and library PIN.
Is it legal? And is it really free?
Yes! Using Freegal Music is totally legal because your library pays for the subscription service. You HAVE to use a library card to sign in, and the number of downloads you get depend on what they paid for.
Freegal is free for you to use if you have a library card.
Why Freegal Might Not Be a Good Fit
While Freegal Music is a cool service and could be a great way to expand your personal music collection or your Yoto collection (by adding the downloads to Yoto cards), it might not be a perfect fit for everyone.
First of all, it's not the most user-friendly and has limited artists and albums included. Some of their library is in foreign languages. Some of it is weird and old and terrible. Most popular artists are not included because they can make more money selling tracks elsewhere. So there's a good chance
Second, they have a terrible search system. Spend a few minutes there an you'll feel like you're stuck in Web 1.0. It's hard track down the exact downloads you're looking for.
Lastly, it also takes a while to get what you want due to the download limits.. Obviously the download limits are what make it legal, but it's still a pain. You have to be on the ball to download things within the week and it will still take a few weeks to get the whole album. If you're patient, it could be a great resource, but this is definitely a case of "time is money" for many people.
Cool Content on Freegal for Yoto Cards
While Freegal Music might not have every artist or album you want, they do have a fairly extensive library with some songs your kids would love. You can find some great content on Freegal Music that you could easily convert into Yoto cards. (If you don't know how to make your own Yoto cards yet, check out this post for step-by-step instructions.)
Here are some of our favorite albums and songs you can download on Freegal Music.
Songs to Download on Freegal for Yoto
You can use Freegal to download music you can use on Yoto cards. This is a great way to get free content to listen to. Here are some songs and albums you can download on Freegal Music.
You'll have to sign in to Freegal with your library card to use these links effectively.
- Songs Across the Pond (this card is also available from Yoto, so it has a lot of fans!)
- Nursery Rhymes
- Cedarmont Kids (they release Christian music as well as common nursery songs)
- Mindful Moments for Kids
- Songs for Peaceful Pandas (inspired by the book “Peaceful Like a Panda”)
- Justin Roberts
- The Kiboomers
- The Wiggles
- Caspar Babypants
- ABC Kids
- The Hit Crew
- Kidz Bop
- Pinkfong (that's a link for the Baby Shark album but they have more as well)
- Disney Lullabies (there are several albums of Disney lullabies - they are covers)
- Dr. Seuss
Movie Soundtracks Your Kids Will Love
- Pink Panther Soundtrack
- Dr. Seuss' The Grinch Soundtrack
- The Peanuts Movie Soundtrack
- Trolls Movie Soundtrack
- My Little Pony Movie Soundtrack
Music from Popular Animated Shows
- Bluey: The Album
- The Backyardigans (or you can find their other albums here)
- Dora the Explorer
- SpongeBob's Greatest Hits
- Blue's Clues
- Sesame Street
- Dragon Tales
Books and Stories to Download on Freegal
- 10 Minute Short Stories for Children
- Stories by Beatrix Potter
- 5 Minute Bedtime Stories for Children
- 5 Minute Short Stories for Children
- Yo Gabba Gabba
- Sleeping Beauty & Other Tales
- Dr. Seuss' Fox in Socks & Other Stories
- Dr. Seuss' Green Eggs and Ham & Other Stories
Music for the Whole Family
- Romance of the Violin by Joshua Bell
- The Sorcerer's Apprentice by the London Philharmonic Orchestra
- Peter and the Wolf by the London Philharmonic Orchestra
- Children's Story Time with Peter Samuels
- Blockbuster Movie Themes (covers)
Have any more awesome Freegal finds? Comment below and I'll put them on the list!