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  • Writer's pictureRandy McGravey

What to do with Spare Music Licensing Tracks?

I'm sure we've all had some tracks lying around that haven't been accepted by a library yet. As I've been in the business for a few years, I have a sort of method for trying to shop my music that hasn't been taken. Here is my "trickle down" method.


Let's say you wrote a full album of the same style of music. Here are some options for what you can do, in order of best to worst (in my opinion).

  • Shop the album as a whole to some major exclusive libraries or libraries that you really want to be a part of. One email every week or two gives the libraries time to respond.

  • If you aren't successful after several months (3-6), try some mid-range exclusive libraries that take full albums or libraries that you have already successfully contacted in the past.

  • If you are still unsuccessful, try some other independent or boutique exclusive libraries

Assuming none of the above works, you can try sending individual tracks of varying styles to some libraries that generally do compilation albums. This is helpful for any tracks you've written for briefs that weren't accepted. Sending various styles to a library will give them an idea of your versatility, and they may ask you to submit for their briefs in the future.

Now let's say you have 6 out of 10 album tracks still available. You can try the following methods.

  • Hold on to the tracks in hopes that a brief will come up at some point (I've had some surprising results from this method and it is my top choice).

  • Create more tracks of the same style as the leftover track(s) until you have a full album to shop around.

  • Try sending the best tracks to a boutique non-exclusive library and see if they have a need for them.

  • If all else fails, you can publish the tracks to typical non-exclusive and Royalty Free sites.


This method is useful for me, since it goes from top tier potential down to lesser but still decent libraries. If most libraries didn't accept the music, it's possible that the composition and/or quality needs to be improved. It is also possible that the style of music is not in demand. If you don't feel like re-doing the music, you can simply dump the tracks into an RF site and move on. Who knows? Someone on there might like it anyway.

Having the music available for sale somewhere can only help. Just be cautious with really low quality stuff. If you don't personally like it, I would suggest leaving it on your computer and using it as a learning experience. You don't want to be seen as an inferior composer, and you do want to accurately represent yourself. Make sure your music is earning you the most it possibly can. Work smarter, not harder!

If you are an aspiring music licensing composer, learn all about this field and how to succeed in my new book: "Making Money with Music Licensing"

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