Can You Use SoundCloud Music on YouTube?

Aug 2, 2022


Table of Contents

Why is it important to use background music in YouTube content?
When to avoid adding music to YouTube content
Can I use SoundCloud music on YouTube
An alternative to SoundCloud for YouTube videos
Why is it important to understand music copyright laws?

Have you ever wondered if you can use SoundCloud music on YouTube? If so, you've come to the right place. Note: this article isn’t legal advice but reflects our research and understanding of the topic. You may need to consult a lawyer for matters pertaining to the use of SoundCloud music on YouTube.

Finding good music to use in YouTube videos can be a difficult process. Naturally, this leads to content creators looking to platforms like SoundCloud to find music to use. But is using music from this platform allowed? 

soundcloud home page

In this article, you will learn if you’re legally permitted to use SoundCloud music for your YouTube channel content.

But first, let’s briefly discuss why using music in your YouTube content is important. 

Why Is It Important to Use Background Music in YouTube Content?

Adding background music to YouTube videos will make the content more appealing to watch or listen to.

This is especially true if you're producing a storytime YouTube video or any other type of video that only features someone talking without any visual effects. 

storytime video

You can also use music to set a certain mood through the use of an appropriate soundtrack. Additionally, music can be used to place emphasis on certain sections of a video. 

When to Avoid Adding Music to YouTube Content

Adding background music to your YouTube content is important, but there are some unique cases where it would be better to avoid adding music to your content entirely. 

Here are some reasons why you might want to not add background music to your content:

  • You don’t have the artist or record company’s permission to use the music.
  • When the audio of the video footage plays an important role in the purpose of the video. For instance, if your video is about teaching how to play the guitar, then adding music to the sections of the video where you’re playing guitar will be confusing and conflicting to viewers.

Can I Use SoundCloud Music on YouTube?

Now, let’s move on to the actual reason why you’re here, can you use SoundCloud music on YouTube? The simple answer is, no you can’t use SoundCloud music on YouTube without consent from the owner or creator. 

The rule is that you shouldn’t and may not use music in your YouTube videos that you don’t own or have the appropriate licensing for usage.  

But what should you do if you’ve discovered a song on SoundCloud that you’d really like to add to your YouTube video?

If that is the case, then you’re going to have to contact the owner or artist who created the music and discuss if they’d be open to you using their music. 

However, this can get very costly since most artists or music labels will charge you based on how many times their intellectual property is used. In this case, it would be each time someone watches your video. 

But don’t let this deter you from contacting the owner of the music, some artists may give you permission to use their music without having to pay. You might just have to give them credit for using their intellectual property.

An Alternative to SoundCloud Music for YouTube Videos

So then, what other cost-efficient alternatives are there to using SoundCloud music on YouTube? 

Because of the high costs associated with regular music licensing, most YouTube content creators use royalty-free music in their videos. 

Providers such as Artlist have made it easy for YouTubers to add royalty-free music to their videos for a flat monthly fee. 


Another option that creators have is to make use of YouTube’s Audio Library. This is available to all creators and consists of a library of thousands of free music that you can add to YouTube content. 

youtube audio library

Note: The music from YouTube’s Audio Library is for sole use on YouTube. This means that you won’t be able to repost the content on other channels such as Facebook, TikTok, Instagram, etc. 

Why is it Important to Understand Music Copyright Laws?

Researching and understanding music copyright laws is something most creators don’t necessarily focus on. Rightly so, creators have a ton of things to do such as thinking of new content ideas, researching and producing content, and tweaking their YouTube SEO strategy. 

With all of this on their plate, creators may tend to skip the practice of understanding music copyright. 

However, if you carelessly just add music to your YouTube videos that you don’t have permission to use, YouTube may impose a copyright strike on your channel. 


You now know whether you can use SoundCloud music on YouTube or not.

Depending on the artist or the music, using a song from SoundCloud in your videos might be fine. 

However, some artists copyright their music, which would lead to issues if it were used in a video. This means you’ll have to probably pay to use their SoundCloud music on YouTube.

To stay on the safe side, use royalty-free music for your YouTube channel content.

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