Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Free (and Legal) Christian Music

If you're anything like me, you like getting good stuff for free. The problem is that free doesn't always mean quality, and in today's world, it often doesn't mean ethical (or, even legal). But here are some websites I've found that offer free, guilt-free downloads of quality Christian songs:

SGM is an extension of Sovereign Grace Ministries, which has been producing songs for over twenty years. Their emphasis is on congregational worship, so the SGM site is a great resource for worship leaders who are very particular about having Biblical lyrics and style.

Quality-wise, the songs are very good. Their musicality is, of course, of a professional quality that reflects the ministry's long years of experience and high standards. But what I appreciate most about SGM songs is their adherence to Biblical standards. Lyrics must not only be Bible-based, but Bible-saturated and Bible-teaching. They should then be adorned with music that highlights the message, rather than distracts from it.

While most of SGM's songs aren't free, several of their albums offer one or two free, full-length songs. It will take no time at all to go through all their albums for these samples, and you'll come away with enough free songs to fill up an audio CD (that is, if you still use those). They come up with new albums regularly, so you'll want to revisit the site every now and then.

"Informed Passion" is the vision of Reformed Praise and its contributors. Like SGM, the site is aimed at promoting Bible-saturated songs  specifically for congregational worship.

Unlike SGM, however, Reformed Praise focuses solely on hymns--historic as well as modern. While this may somewhat limit the musical scope of its songs, it certainly brings to the fore central purposes of congregational worship: to respond thoughtfully to God's self-revelation, and to teach Biblical truths.

In keeping with its strong emphasis on worship that is as precise and educated as it is passionate and sincere, Reformed Praise provides brief articles for each of its songs. This is a big thumbs up for me!

To date, Reformed Praise has come out with only two albums, which are compilations of hymns that are already found on the website, but only in basic or raw format. All the free songs on the site are in the raw format, which means that they are simple, using only one, two or at most, three instruments. Simple as they are, the sound is clean and crisp, and still quite satisfying. What's more is that there are dozens of these free downloads available. The last time I checked, there were about 3 audio CDs worth of songs, and there are probably even more now.

Well, these sites should keep you busy for a while. But there are still more waiting to be reviewed, so look out for the sequel. :)

Related Posts: online resources offering free Christmas songs


  1. Anonymous (a.k.a. Koji)October 29, 2010 at 10:19 PM

    cool blog! thanks for the tips :)

  2. I recently checked SGM, and a lot of the songs that they used to offer free aren't free anymore. :(