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Free Online Music

There are a variety of ways one can find free online music - legally. Online music has evolved from the days of peer-to-peer networking clients (such as the original Napster of the 1990s). The best places to look for free online music are Jango.com, Napster.com, MTVMusic.com, MySpaceMusic.com, Pandora.com, and Playlist.com. Free online music allows you to stream content from the Internet to your computer, without having to download large files or license content. By streaming content you are relying on the provider's license to play the song.

Jango reinvented the way people listen to music online. Consider it as "Myspace meets Madonna," which blends social media with music. Users can customize a radio station to play songs relative to a certain artist. Additionally, Jango supports up and coming artists by playing independent records. By entering the name of an artist, album, or song the system generates your own radio station (commercial free) that plays similar songs.

Napster reinvented itself after the original peer-to-peer network operator was forced to shut down because of legal issues. Napster is a mainstream service that offers paid subscriptions for unlimited music, however; it offers a free service (free.napster.com) that includes a lot of albums by mainstream artists. The songs can be streamed online over a high-speed Internet connection.

MTVMusic.com is a relatively new service that provides access to thousands of songs (and music videos) online. There is no software to install and the music player works on all operating systems (Mac or Windows). The free online music service supports mainstream artists in Rap, Rock, R&B, etc. The site lacks genres such as country, folk, and jazz.

Playlist.com is an intuitive website that allows users to listen to many different songs online. The files are streamed all over the Internet and include almost every genre. It is difficult to find rare or obscure tracks, however; they offer many mainstream artists. Users can create, share, and edit playlists that can be streamed over the Internet.

MySpaceMusic.com is growing in popularity and is integrated with the MySpace social network. It contains a lot of mainstream music as well as tracks from aspiring and independent artists. The website contains advertising but is done so in a tasteful manner. Users can create playlists, stream content, and share tracks with other users.

Pandora is an extremely popular free online music service that is compatible with all web browsers and even a few cell phones. Pandora streams music based on your preferences. Radio stations can be created with multiple artists, tracks, or albums. Pandora then plays likeminded songs, giving the user the option to skip and rate tracks.