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Nino Film Blog | May 21, 2024

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The Music Bed – interview & win a free song license!

The Music Bed – interview & win a free song license!
Nino Leitner

This post includes a $49 giveaway song for one of my readers. Please read details at the bottom of this post!

As filmmakers and people working in the visual arts, we are dependent on a big component that actually makes out at least 50% of our work, yet we are no specialists for it: music and audio in general.


I use a composer on my own productions whenever possible, but time and/or budget constraints mean that I have to work with what I can buy via a stock music site more often than I want to. The problem with stock music sites is that … well … the average quality of the productions available is not overly great. There are gems to be found for sure on most of these sites, but it’s like looking for a needle in the haystack and it often takes more time than the actual video edit – we have all been through this.

Quality production music is hard to find, but there is one site which constantly surprises me with the quality of music they offer (and no, nobody pays me to say this!): The Music Bed.

As opposed to many other stock music sites, the approach is very personal, and the design of the site makes you feel you are browsing the latest music in a record store. If you drop them an email you get a response from an actual human being and you can even negotiate custom licensing deals – something which is impossible with many other sites. And of course on top of all that, the range and quality of music offered is outstanding.

INTERVIEW with the founder

A while ago I have emailed Daniel McCarthy, co-owner of The Music Bed, a few questions out of personal interest regarding their site, and now I’m finally getting around to sharing the answers with you:

– Who’s behind The Music Bed and where are you located?
The Music Bed was started by Daniel McCarthy and Nic Carfa based out of Fort Worth, TX , and has grown to a small team of five passionate creatives over the course of a year.
– What made you dare the bold step into music licensing?
The concept of TMB was born out of a need that we, as filmmakers, saw in the filmmaking industry. With a decent understanding of the music industry at the time, we took what knowledge, experience, and connections we had and set out to solve our own problem. That problem being the comical lack of affordable, quality, relevant music living in one space and made available to filmmakers for synching. We began just getting songs cleared for us to use in our own projects, and it quickly grew into a fully functional landing place for filmmakers around the world to pick up some tunes.
– Where’s the music industry in times like these? Do you think musicians can still earn a living from music? What has changed over the past 10 years?
With the rise of free streaming sites and piracy, artists aren’t raking in the same kind of sales they used to off of albums and downloaded singles. Along with touring, musicians are looking more and more towards TV and Film placements to make a significant living off their art. That’s where TMB has decidedly stepped in… We represent the artists and ensure that they are fairly compensated for their work in an industry where they’re often taken advantage of.  Over the past 10 years, genres have broadened with the increased number of DIY artists. The market seems over saturated and undervalued, but at the same time, honest talent is still emerging and captivating people more than ever before. 
– The Music Bed features a lot of original music from lesser known artists, and the variety in genres seems to be much bigger than on other music licensing sites. Where do you recruit new bands and musicians from?
Most of our artists are sourced out of our very own music libraries. We’re driven to go after bands that we believe in and listen to ourselves. We don’t have a consistent funnel that we pull our latest catalog additions from — it’s a combination of being connected to independent labels, following indie music blogs, and just constantly keeping our ears open for something new.
– Are there any “stars” that have risen from The Music Bed catalogue yet? Anyone who was discovered because they first had their stuff on your site?
One of our most notable successes has been from singer/songwriter Holley Maher. Being on the site has gotten her major commercial placements and exposure. She is now able to fund her life and focus on music full time purely by what she takes in from TMB, which is a big deal to us. Most of our artists are carrying several jobs just to make their passion happen. We’re satisfied when our artists get to keep doing what they love because they’ve partnered with filmmakers via The Music Bed to make beautiful successful projects. 
Share your good or bad experience with stock music below in the comments and win a production track worth $49 from The Music Bed.

Share your good or bad experience with stock music below in the comments and win a production track worth $49 from The Music Bed.

Tell us your good & bad experience with stock music & win a $49 license for a song from The Music Bed!

Daniel was kind enough to offer one free giveaway song to be used in your production, worth $49. In order to enter, please
• “like” The Music Bed’s Facebook page (it’s here) and
• leave a comment on this page (below) about your good or bad experience with stock music so far.

The $49 song will be raffled among all valid entries on August 14th. Entries close at 11pm GMT on August 13th, 2013. Multiple entries are prohibited. Winner will be emailed and announced in this post.


  1. When I started out as a filmmaker I had trouble finding the right music. Having to get the right melodic tune, rhythm to go with your vision is often times difficult. I began using free royalty music which of course is not bad, but it does like quality from time to time and being a picky editor when editing my videography highlights I really want to make sure that that song is THE ONE. Like all the wedding captures I film where couples talk about them finding the one I too would like to find the one song to marry that wedding video. So far my best experience with stock music is really The Music Bed (TMB), because I believe in quality over quantity and TMB who works with many talented artist really does offer the better quality. It’s inspiring to hear these artist that I’ve never heard of before and it’s even more exciting that there are so many to choose from. I’ve only used TMB once, but I’m sure I’ll be back for more.

  2. Maricel

    I think that TMB is one of the best stock music site.

  3. I bought a track from istock audio and that repetition of ‘istock audio’ through the track on trial if enuf to drive you bonkers. It was for the first ‘cosporate’ style video I made and I got to like the track because it helps if you like the work you produce. Now, with more experience of filmmaking, I hate that track because it sounds the same as all the other corporate audio tracks in royalty free, and I will make a better shorter edit of the video and then call it a film!


    ps, I didn’t do the ‘like’ on facebook cos that anonoys me as much as royalty free music lol

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  5. I think the biggest problem from the music library’s perspective is search. How best can the site field music search queries. I have found that most royalty free music sites offer the standard search box and then some pre-made searches based on category or music style but these are all pretty general. The problem is fielding very narrow or specific search requests and getting these results to the end-user. An in depth tagging system (that goes beyond the general terms) seems to be the best answer to this.

  6. Indie Composer

    Royalty free music hurts the artists. When Music Bed licenses music to a tv show or super ad who gets the royalties? Music bed. I like their idea just dump the royalty free option. Indie film makers don’t care about it they just want the license to be easy and cheap.

    • Well I don’t know why you think the artists don’t get any royalties from Music Bed? I think they are one of the fairest of the bunch when it comes to paying artists. That’s also why so many really, really good artists sign up with them! Also they don’t do dumping prices like so many others.

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