Kevin MacLeod

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Kevin MacLeod
MacLeod in 2016
MacLeod in 2016
Background information
Born (1972-09-28) September 28, 1972 (age 51)
Green Bay, Wisconsin, U.S.
OriginNew York City, United States
Genres
Occupations
  • Composer
  • music producer
Years active1996–present
Spouse(s)
Jeanette MacLeod
(m. 1995)
Websiteincompetech.com

Kevin MacLeod (/məˈkld/ mə-KLOWD; born September 28, 1972) is an American composer and music producer.[1][2] MacLeod has composed over 2,000 pieces of royalty-free library music[3] and made them available under a Creative Commons copyright license.[4][5] This licensing allows anyone to use his music for free, as long as he receives credit for the song,[3] and has led to his music being used in thousands of films, millions of videos on YouTube,[6][7][8] and in video games such as Kerbal Space Program.[9] As of 2017, his music is featured on one of the live feeds from the International Space Station, Earth From Space.[5] One of his compositions, "Monkeys Spinning Monkeys", is among the most-played on TikTok; from January through June 2021 it was played over 31.6 billion times.[10][11]

Early life[edit]

MacLeod was born on September 28, 1972, in Green Bay, Wisconsin. He went to the University of Wisconsin–Green Bay, where he studied music education.[12]

Career[edit]

Music distribution[edit]

MacLeod states that he releases his music under Creative Commons licenses to maximize the number of people who can use his music.[13] On his website's FAQ, he expressed disdain for the current state of copyright; he hopes to create "an alternate body of works that is able to compete with them".[13][14]

MacLeod's most popular license is the Creative Commons Attribution copyright license; his music is free to use but must be credited.[15] A no-attribution license is also available for people who are unwilling or unable to provide credit to MacLeod; the license costs $30 for one song, $50 for two songs, and $20 per song for three or more songs.[15]

MacLeod has also created FreePD.com, which collects new public domain sound recordings by various artists. Rather than waiting for old copyrights to expire, he hopes to provide a quality library of modern recorded works by artists who explicitly release their music into the public domain.[16] Some of MacLeod's own music is available on the website as well; he explains that these songs are "not commercially viable in the traditional sense, and just add clutter [on his primary website] which hinders people in finding the pieces that they may want."[17]

Documentary[edit]

MacLeod is the subject of a documentary film titled Royalty Free: The Music of Kevin MacLeod.[18] The film had a limited release in October 2020. Ryan Camarda, the film's director and producer, ran a fundraising campaign on Kickstarter with a goal of $30,000; by the end of the campaign, 524 backers had pledged a total of $30,608.[19] According to the Kickstarter page, the amount was needed for transportation in order to conduct in-person interviews with the various subjects featured in the film.[19] The documentary has received positive reviews from critics.[20]

Awards and accolades[edit]

In 2015, MacLeod was awarded the International Honorary Web Video Award at the 2015 German Web Video Awards by the European Web Video Academy for his lifetime achievement in influencing the German web video community.[21][22]

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

  • 2006: Dorney Rock
  • 2006: Missing Hits 2
  • 2012: Cuentos de Recuperación (with Sonia Echezuria)
  • 2014: Horror Soundscapes
  • 2014: Highland Strands
  • 2014: Ghostpocalypse
  • 2014: Calming
  • 2014: Hard Electronic
  • 2014: Madness and Paranoia
  • 2014: PsychoKiller
  • 2014: Supernatural Haunting
  • 2014: The Ambient
  • 2014: Cephalopod
  • 2014: Dark World
  • 2014: Disco Ultralounge
  • 2014: Polka! Polka! Polka!
  • 2014: Primal Drive
  • 2014: Sadness
  • 2014: The Descent
  • 2014: Dark Continent
  • 2014: Wonders
  • 2014: Action Cuts
  • 2014: Aspiring
  • 2014: Light Electronic
  • 2014: Medium Electronic
  • 2014: Mystery
  • 2014: Tenebrous Brothers Carnival
  • 2014: Atlantean Twilight
  • 2014: Healing
  • 2014: Latinesque
  • 2014: Take the Lead
  • 2014: Thatched Villagers
  • 2014: Happyrock
  • 2014: Music to Delight
  • 2014: Silent Film: Light Collection
  • 2014: Vadodara
  • 2014: Bitter Suite
  • 2014: Comedy Scoring
  • 2014: Double Drift
  • 2014: Reunited
  • 2014: Funkorama
  • 2014: Oddities
  • 2014: Silent Film: Dark Collection
  • 2015: Christmas!
  • 2015: Darkness
  • 2015: Exhilarate
  • 2015: Film Noire
  • 2015: Fluidscape
  • 2015: Netherworld Shanty
  • 2015: Romance
  • 2015: Video Classica
  • 2015: Virtutes Instrumenti
  • 2015: Ossuary
  • 2015: Pixelland
  • 2016: Maccary Bay
  • 2016: Mystic Force
  • 2016: Anamalie
  • 2016: Final Battle
  • 2016: Carpe Diem
  • 2016: Groovy
  • 2016: Mesmerize
  • 2016: Traveller
  • 2017: Shadowlands
  • 2017: Destruction Device
  • 2017: Spirit
  • 2017: Ferret
  • 2017: Teh Jazzes
  • 2017: Miami Nights
  • 2018: Spring Chicken
  • 2018. Sheep Reliability
  • 2019: Meditation
  • 2019: Epic
  • 2019: The Complete Game Music Bundle
  • 2019: Complete Collection (Creative Commons)
  • 2020: SCP-XXX
  • 2020: Relaxx
  • 2021: Missing Hits
  • 2021: The Waltzes
  • 2021: Missing Hits C to E
  • 2021: Missing Hits N to R
  • 2021: Missing Hits Calmness
  • 2021: Missing Hits F to J
  • 2021: Missing Hits K to M
  • 2021: Missing Hits A to B
  • 2021: Missing Hits S to T
  • 2021: Missing Hits U to Z
  • 2023: Over The Moon
  • 2023: Changes (with ON THE TRACK)
  • 2023: Robotik Party

Singles and EPs[edit]

"Monkeys Spinning Monkeys" by Kevin MacLeod
  • 2011: The Cannery
  • 2013: Happy Bee
  • 2014: Tranquility 5
  • 2014: Sneaky Snitch
  • 2014: Fluffing a Duck
  • 2014: Orrganic Meditation
  • 2014: Touching Moments
  • 2014: Impact
  • 2015: Guts and Bourbon
  • 2015: Somewhere Sunny
  • 2015: Garden Music
  • 2016: Vicious
  • 2017: Ever Mindful
  • 2018: Magic Scout: A Calm Experience
  • 2018: Laserpack
  • 2019: Dream Catcher
  • 2019: Flying Kerfufle
  • 2019: Le Grand Chase
  • 2019: Crusade: Heavy Industry
  • 2019: OnionCapers
  • 2019: Envision
  • 2019: Glitter Blast
  • 2019: Leaving Home
  • 2019: Magistar
  • 2019: Midnight Tale
  • 2019: River Flute
  • 2019: Symmetry
  • 2019: Sovereign
  • 2019: Hustle Hard
  • 2019: Almost Bliss
  • 2019: Beauty Flow
  • 2019: Half Mystery
  • 2019: Past Sadness
  • 2019: Raving Energy
  • 2019: Rising Tide
  • 2019: Tyrant
  • 2019: Sincerely
  • 2019: Celebration
  • 2019: Deep and Dirty
  • 2019: Fuzzball Parade
  • 2019: Lotus
  • 2019: Realizer
  • 2019: Stay the Course
  • 2019: Verano Sensual
  • 2019: Wholesome
  • 2019: Farting Around
  • 2019: Aquarium
  • 2019: Monkeys Spinning Monkeys
  • 2019: A Kevin MacLeod Xmas
  • 2019: Folk?
  • 2019: Menagerie
  • 2020: Worldish
  • 2019: Scheming Weasel (Peukie Remix)
  • 2020: What You Want
  • 2020: Island Music
  • 2020: On Hold for You
  • 2020: Canons in D
  • 2020: Project 80s
  • 2021: World
  • 2021: Now That's Now!
  • 2021: Night in the Castle
  • 2021: Adventures in Adventureland
  • 2021: WOTSITS!!!!
  • 2021: Space Jazz
  • 2021: Ethereal Relaxation
  • 2022: Journey to Ascend
  • 2022: Boogie Party
  • 2023: Paradise Found
  • 2023: Over the Moon

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hoffberger, Chase (March 3, 2020). "Royalty Free: Why YouTube and Creative Commons can't coexist". The Daily Dot. Archived from the original on September 23, 2015. Retrieved August 30, 2015.
  2. ^ Pollari, Niina. "Free Music – Kevin MacLeod Composes for the Internet". Kickstarter. Archived from the original on December 22, 2015. Retrieved August 30, 2015.
  3. ^ a b Gutelle, Sam (December 2, 2016). "Kevin MacLeod Is The King Of Royalty-Free Music, And Millions Are Listening". Tubefilter. Archived from the original on November 10, 2021. Retrieved September 27, 2023.
  4. ^ "Case Studies/Kevin MacLeod". creativecommons.org. Archived from the original on October 8, 2014. Retrieved January 19, 2015.
  5. ^ a b Tyler, Aaron (May 30, 2017). "Earth From Space & Kevin MacLeod Music". On Stage Magazine. Archived from the original on September 29, 2023. Retrieved September 9, 2020.
  6. ^ "I am Kevin MacLeod, the composer in millions of YouTube videos, and thousands of films. AMA! : IAmA". Reddit. September 17, 2013. Archived from the original on December 11, 2014. Retrieved January 19, 2015.
  7. ^ Silverman, Matt (October 19, 2018). "How the internet's most prolific composer makes a living by giving his music away for free". The Daily Dot. Archived from the original on September 29, 2023. Retrieved September 9, 2020.
  8. ^ Duenas, Ulises (December 16, 2020). "'Royalty Free' Tells the Story of the Most Selfless Man in Music". High Brow Magazine. Archived from the original on September 29, 2023. Retrieved December 19, 2020.
  9. ^ "Soundtrack from Kerbal Space Program!". incompetech.com. Archived from the original on August 12, 2022. Retrieved July 25, 2022.
  10. ^ Steele, Chandra (August 25, 2021). "These TikTok Songs Have Earned the Most Money in 2021". PCMAG. Archived from the original on September 29, 2023. Retrieved May 3, 2022.
  11. ^ Peirson-Hagger, Ellen (April 29, 2021). "How composer Kevin MacLeod became the king of royalty-free music". New Statesman. Archived from the original on October 5, 2022. Retrieved May 3, 2022.
  12. ^ Gutelle, Sam (December 2, 2016). "Kevin MacLeod Is The King Of Royalty-Free Music, And Millions Are Listening". Tubefilter. Archived from the original on November 10, 2021. Retrieved September 9, 2020.
  13. ^ a b MacLeod, Kevin. "Free downloads – Royalty Free Music". Incompetech. Archived from the original on March 23, 2015. Retrieved March 25, 2015.
  14. ^ Camarda, Ryan (January 1, 2000), Royalty Free: The Music of Kevin MacLeod, archived from the original on March 12, 2017, retrieved March 12, 2017
  15. ^ a b MacLeod, Kevin. "Music License Forms". Incompetech. Archived from the original on July 29, 2016. Retrieved March 25, 2015.
  16. ^ MacLeod, Kevin. "Public Domain Music Downloads". FreePD. Archived from the original on March 23, 2015. Retrieved March 26, 2015.
  17. ^ MacLeod, Kevin. "FreePD FAQ". FreePD. Archived from the original on August 16, 2016. Retrieved March 26, 2015.
  18. ^ Spacek, Nick (December 2, 2020). "Director Ryan Camarda on Royalty Free, his new doc on composer Kevin Macleod". The Pitch. Archived from the original on September 29, 2023. Retrieved December 19, 2020.
  19. ^ a b "Royalty Free: The Music of Kevin MacLeod by Ryan Camarda". Kickstarter.com. Archived from the original on October 30, 2014. Retrieved January 19, 2015.
  20. ^ "Royalty Free: The Music of Kevin MacLeod". Rotten Tomatoes. Archived from the original on February 27, 2021. Retrieved December 19, 2020.
  21. ^ "German Web Video Award Page". Archived from the original on October 30, 2019. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  22. ^ "Kevin MacLeod gewinnt den Ehrenpreis international" [Kevin MacLeod wins the honorary award internationally]. YouTube (in German). Webvideopreis Deutschland. June 14, 2015. Archived from the original on June 23, 2015. Retrieved June 14, 2015.

External links[edit]