Library videos need a musical soundtrack. Let's try a little comparison to illustrate. Turn-off the sound on your computer, mobile device, or whatever technology you're using to read this blog post. Then play the book trailer (below).
MPL Book Trailer #177
Floor Four: A Novella of Horror, by A. Lopez, Jr.
Now, turn on your sound and replay the book trailer (the music's a bit soft at the beginning, so turn it up loud so you can hear clearly, or, better yet, use earphones).
Musical soundtracks set the mood of a video, especially when there is no voice-over track. Consider a couple of examples.
MPL Book Trailer #49
Treasure Island, by Robert Louis Stevenson
MPL Book Trailer #46
Good-Bye, Mister Chips, by James Hilton
Live-action videos benefit from music, too. Like this one, for instance:
OverDrive Promo Trailer, by Miss Rachel & Miss Michelle
How do you find music for your video soundtracks? There are websites that offer royalty-free music, such as PD Info, Royalty-Free Music.com, SoundCloud, Digital Juice, Purple Planet Music, Bensound, Free Music Archive, Free Stock Music, and many, many others, some of which cost money (and are quite expensive), and others of which are free. One must exercise caution and investigate the sites supplying the music to ensure that they are not infringing upon anyone's copyrights.
At my library, we don't use any of these (or other) websites to download royalty-free music. We don't have to. We have our own composer who writes original compositions for nearly all of our videos. It's not commonly known, but he is willing to share his music royalty-free (at no cost) to libraries to use in their videos, provided that he receives an on-screen attribution in the video credits. Librarians may contact me for further details.
If you'd like to listen to some of our composer's instrumental selections, please visit his:
- Facebook page;
- Reverbnation page;
- SoundCloud page; or
- Checkout his music CDs from our catalog, through Evergreen Indiana, SRCS (Indiana libraries), or interlibrary loan.
Our composer's music has been instrumental (no pun intended) to our videos' success. We would never have reached over a million views on our YouTube channel had it not been for his wonderful compositions.
Once you've decided upon a source for your musical soundtracks, what types of videos can your library craft? We'll be blogging about that in upcoming posts.