Discover Kevin MacLeod, the most listened to composer on the planet

Meet Kevin MacLeod, the most listened to composer on the planet


Surely you've all heard a melody written by Kevin MacLeod. His catalog of over 2000 royalty-free songs is virtually impossible to avoid on the web. 

His songs accompany millions of videos on YouTube or TikTok, thousands of films as well as a hundred video games.

Who is this bald, shy man who changed the face of the internet forever? 

Bug of the year 2000

Kevin MacLeod lived an ordinary childhood in the US state of Wisconsin. Born in 1972, he took an early interest in music and computers. He began composing music after buying a small electronic keyboard. 

After studying music at the University of Wisconsin in Green Bay, he got a job as a computer programmer. He continued to create music and upload his creations to the internet until the birth of video-sharing platforms like YouTube in the early 2000s.

In its early days, YouTube was like the Wild West. Nobody respected the concept of copyright and, quickly, the platform was forced to act. Videos that used songs without their authors' permission were removed by the website.

Faced with this problem, MacLeod decided to make its catalog available to everyone. 

“As I was almost one of the only ones composing free titles, people started using them. The only condition was that they credit me,” MacLeod explained in an interview.

Copyright activist

Music by Kevin MacLeod quickly went viral. The one who describes himself as a radical activist advocates the abolition of copyright. MacLeod would like music to flow freely to foster creation.

“At At the time, if you wanted to find royalty-free music to accompany your productions, you had to buy CDs that sometimes cost hundreds of dollars. I thought it would be a good idea for a lot of people if I gave my music to everyone”, he explained to the media ADN.

His name began to circulate on the web, and many people approached him to collaborate with him. 

The composer even caught the attention of a certain Martin Scorsese. In the documentary Royalty Free: The Music of Kevin MacLeod, it is said that one of the legendary director's assistants approached him about using one of his compositions. 

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“I simply said that the condition for using my song was to credit me, he explained. The production hallucinated and offered me money. So I asked them for 30 dollars, which is the price at which I sell the licenses of my compositions on my website.”

The man who could destroy YouTube

It's impossible to know how many times Kevin MacLeod's music has been used on YouTube. If he decided to monetize his production, the musician would become “the most hated man on the internet”. He estimates he could make between $40 and $50 million a day. 

“It's kind of like having YouTube's kill switch. But I assure you, I will never press this button,” he says.

The musician, who appreciates his anonymity, does not seem to care about the number of downloads on his platforms. < /p>

“Honestly, I don't know,” he explains. I don't really look at the stats.” 

With information from< em> and Jack Canal +