Find free, legal music on Internet

Meranda Watling

If the lawsuits being filed against people across the country or the threat of spyware have scared students out of illegally downloading music, have no fear. There are ways to get that music fix — free and legal.

One option is Internet radio. You can listen to everything from National Public Radio to rock stations in California for free. is one site that allows you to search for stations by station name, location or genre. Yahoo! Music, at, is another site to check out, it not only has Internet radio but also music videos.

Even Kent State’s own student run radio can be heard online. By visiting WKSR’s Web site,, anyone can access the station’s Web stream. WKSR uses its web stream to reach more people than it could broadcasting to the campus alone.

“Because of our situation, we are unable to have a frequency … so we wanted to expand our audience as much as possible,” said Brandon Tidd, senior electronic media major and WKSR operations and Web director.

Many programs have built-in Internet radio features with stations often broken down by genre. Anyone who has Windows Media Player installed — most computers with windows are equipped with it — can listen to a plethora of stations right from the program. Other programs, like iTunes and RealPlayer, offer radio also.

Another option is to download music from artists’ Web sites or other Web sites that offer free downloads., an Internet radio station out of Santa Monica, Calif., for example is currently offering a free download of the song “Cigaro” by System of a Down.

Free songs can also be downloaded from Some of the songs have restrictions, such as they can’t be burned to CD or they expire in a month, but other songs are available in the standard MP3 format.

Jenna Heinaman, sophomore integrated social studies major, downloads free music from, which has over 20,000 live concerts archived. She said she heard about the site on a Howie Day message board.

“When you enter an artist’s name, it also suggests other artists,” she said. “It’s mainly people who are still trying to get their name out there more. It’s mainly their live material, nothing you can buy in stores.”

If listeners are unwilling to let radio DJs dictate the music they listen to, or if downloading unknown or random musicians doesn’t appeal, Pepsi is currently running an iTunes promotion. Under caps of specially marked Pepsi products is a code. One in three bottles is a winner, according to the Pepsi Web site. If the cap says free song, you can plug the code into iTunes and download any song you want from its 1 million plus song catalog.

“When I download using iTunes, I have control over what goes in my playlist,” Tidd said. “Whereas, when listening to a radio station, the best I can do is to pick the genre.”

Contact technology reporter Meranda Watling at [email protected].