There is no such thing as a truly free, karaoke MP3. While sites like Ez-tracks offer “101 free legal karaoke songs,” the price you pay makes you subject to advertisement after advertisement. They pop up on the page, they invade your email inbox, they interrupt your song searches.
For some it is well worth it, but others just want an easier system. One would think that the iTunes store would be full of karaoke tunes, although the offerings are still unimpressive for the seasoned veteran and many tracks don’t have lyrics automatically included. Despite these setbacks, there are a number of places to look for online karaoke music.
There are several things to look for when downloading karaoke MP3 files. Some files feature recordings from the original band members, with the vocals removed. Others have professional recording artists performing the tracks, with the vocals removed.
Other tracks come with the vocals and allow you to cancel out the vocals on your karaoke system, if your system comes with that feature. It is important to understand the features and the limitations of your karaoke equipment before you start browsing for music.
Another factor to consider is its extension. Most downloads will come as “.mp3” files, although some may say “midi,””mp3+g” or “mp4.” Midi sometimes sounds like keyboard music and is often a very different version, so you will want to avoid those.
The MP3+G are good because they have the lyrics included that can be output to video. MP4 format may be a music file and an accompanying music video file, which is fine if you want the videos more than the lyrics.
It is a natural assumption that where there is the internet, there is free everything. Unfortunately, the market selling karaoke downloads is still pretty hot and you are not likely to find any sites offering free karaoke MP3 files. You may be able to find some downloads on peer-to-peer applications like LimeWire or BearShare; however, these sites are growing increasingly more unreliable and havens for computer viruses.
Newsgroups like Usenet-Replayer may have online karaoke files for download, although these sites are fairly limited in their offerings. IRC file sharing channels like Searchirc or Ircnetsplit are popular ways of getting downloads because of the vast amount of accessible content, although it is technically illegal to share content this way, it may leave your computer vulnerable to hackers and it isn’t user friendly.
There are a number of sites offering legal karaoke MP3 files for purchase. At Singme, you can download karaoke MP3s for 88 cents and video karaoke for $1.50. They specialize in children’s music, nursery rhymes, gospel and holiday music.
At Amazon, you can download 73,219 karaoke MP3s for 89 to 99 cents each. Other sites with large selections are Karaoke, Karaoke-version and Ez-tracks. With a monthly subscription to Napster for $12.95/month, you can download unlimited karaoke music files to be played on your computer or your iRiver.