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Level Up with Royalty-Free Elevator Music

If you’re looking for easy-listening background music, you’ve come to the right place. Explore PremiumBeat’s library of royalty-free elevator music for soothing sounds that won’t steal the stage.

Our Top Elevator Tracks

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Calming Properties

For years now, elevator music has been played in hotels, restaurants, lobbies, and other such public places where crowds gather, as a soothing sort of background noise. Professor Gary Gumpert of Queens College once described the music as a “kind of amniotic fluid that surrounds us; and it never startles us, it is never too loud.” Use this music in your own projects for a similar effect.

Easily Looped

Designed with easy looping in mind, elevator music is perfect for settings in which the music is primarily intended to serve as background noise. It has the ability to add to the ambience without distracting people from the task at hand, whether that’s enjoying a meal in a restaurant, shopping in a mall, or checking into a hotel.

Multiple Modern Applications

These days, you may or may not hear elevator music in an actual elevator -- its use has extended into today’s technologies. From quiet background music in a Zoom meeting to the tunes that loop in a phone call when you are on hold, ambience for a scene in your film to steady sounds during your PowerPoint, elevator music can now be heard in a wide variety of settings.
About Elevator Music
What is elevator music?
Elevator music is pre-recorded music often played in public places where crowds gather as a way to create a soothing atmosphere. It is usually thought of as bossa nova or easy listening music. It is not intended to be the central focus for listeners but is instead meant to blend into the background. This is why elevator music is sometimes referred to as “background music.” In the 1930s, a company called Muzak was created. This popular company delivered elevator music to businesses, hotels, restaurants, and other such spaces with such frequency that “Muzak” became synonymous with “elevator music.” Back in the day, the speakers that played Muzak were so commonly hidden among large potted plants that some people called it “potted palm music.”
Why is it called elevator music?
A popular internet theory contends that elevator music was invented to help calm the nerves of frightened, first-time elevator riders. But the elevator was invented in 1880, and the earliest references to elevator music are in the 1930s, so people had already been riding elevators for about fifty years before elevator music came about. Peter Carrajat, author of The History of the Elevator Industry in America 1850-2001, states that elevator music was simply intended to be a distraction to keep riders from feeling bored on what was, back in the 1930s, at least, a rather slow ride. For years, this music was referred to as “canned music,” or “Muzak,” thanks to the leading background music company of the time. It wasn’t until the 1960s and 1970s that people actually started calling it “elevator music.” These days, elevator music more commonly refers to music that is played in rooms where people tend to gather, such as a lobby, with no intention to actively listen to the music.
Who makes elevator music?
In 1934, a company called Muzak released its first recording. Over the years, their music grew in popularity and became the standard in elevators, offices, lobbies, and other such spaces. Muzak became known as the name in background music. Even President Eisenhower had his residence wired up for the tunes! In the 1940s, research found that music had a positive physiological influence on behavior, so Muzak created the Stimulus Progression, 15-minute stretches of background instrumentals meant to boost the productivity of listeners. This sort of background music quickly became popular in work settings, as it was believed that the music would induce a good mood in workers. By the ‘60s and ‘70s, Muzak was everywhere. Before the launch of Apollo 11, astronauts listened to the tunes to soothe their nerves, and John F. Kennedy consistently played Muzak on his plane. Muzak went out of business in 2009, but these days, you can easily access high-quality elevator music by exploring music libraries such as PremiumBeat.
Is Jazz an elevator music?
No, jazz is not elevator music. The working definition of “elevator music” states that it is music played in public gathering spaces or as background noise for telephone calls placed on hold. It is the sort of music that is simply meant to create a mood or atmosphere. No one buys a ticket to go see a live “elevator music” performance. With jazz, on the other hand, people actively listen to the music. Jazz sometimes involves electrifying improvisation by the performers, whereas elevator music has rhythms and sounds that are not intended to catch and hold a listener’s attention. This is why you most likely have never heard the songs of a famous jazz musician piped in through the speakers of an elevator.
Is elevator music copyrighted?
Yes, elevator music is copyrighted. This means that it can only be licensed to an interested party if a special agreement has been formed with the artist or intellectual property owner. If a person were to use copyrighted elevator music without permission in a YouTube video, for example, that video would be taken down or partially muted by YouTube. In order to legally use such music, the easiest option is to search a library such as PremiumBeat for your ideal tunes. With the PremiumBeat royalty-free music license in your metaphorical pocket, your music will be good to go in a number of projects. You can add our elevator music to internet videos, corporate videos, and non-commercially distributed projects, no matter whether it is for personal or professional usage for yourself, your clients, or your employer.

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How to use elevator music



Using elevator music for Zoom

When it comes to using elevator music for your Zoom meeting or event, be sure to check those volume levels. The volume of your background music and the volume of the voice of your speaker need to be balanced. If the music is drowning out the words of your speaker, you can bet your audience will soon feel frustrated and lose interest. One common audio issue with music and Zoom calls is that sometimes background music gets picked up by the same microphone the speaker is using. To avoid this, you will want to adjust the settings of your Zoom so that your music comes through your device and not the microphone. You can try some upbeat elevator music in your fitness Zoom classes or relaxed lowkey elevator music for casual evening meetings.

Using elevator music in iMovie

By adding elevator music to your iMovie project, you can effortlessly create a mood and liven up a scene that might otherwise seem slow. Say, for example, you want to edit together a montage of your protagonist shopping at a variety of stores. Incorporating an upbeat little tune is one way to let the audience know they may be in for a series of quick shots as opposed to a lengthy and serious dialogue scene. Elevator music can similarly be played when the film is beginning or ending, as credits roll, effectively keeping the audience engaged. iMovie allows users to work with their own library of sound effects or upload their own from personal music libraries, so when you find elevator music on PremiumBeat that you can’t get out of your head, simply download to your personal device and upload into iMovie to take your film to the next level.

Using elevator music for Powerpoint

Elevator music can help create a virtual lobby or waiting room for your audience in the minutes that lead up to your presentation. It creates a mood, an air of excitement and anticipation for the event that is soon to follow. You can also incorporate elevator music into the presentation itself as a form of background music. You will want to make sure the tone of the music matches the tone of your PowerPoint so that it complements your presentation and does not distract from your message. Adding elevator music to your PowerPoint is easy. You can add music to a single slide or the entire presentation. If you are considering adding elevator music to a single slide, be sure that that slide won’t go by in a flash; it can confuse your audience to go from a quick snippet of song to silence so quickly. If you are thinking of adding elevator music to the entirety of your presentation, consider the length of the song’s loop. A fifteen-minute PowerPoint, for example, is going to need a song loop that doesn’t repeat itself every ten seconds.
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