I've spent many countless hours trying to find music for video clips to edit too and come to a conclusion...
Seeing the music.
I only need to hear a song for 2-3 seconds to know wether or not i can use it in a video clip. It's a strange gut feeling that tells me yes it will work or no it won't. When I hear a song I can see how the clip looks in my mind then all I have to do is find the footage to match it up. I often hear music while i'm driving and just create music video clips in my mind, it's not something I do on purpose it just happens.
Copyright, copyright, copyright. It's really difficult to find music that isn't copyright. I understand why and that's not a problem for me at all. The problem is it's extremely difficult to find wether or not you are allowed to use the music on YouTube. There are many different search websites and lookup systems that will tell you this, however most of the music I pick doesn't show up in these databases at all.
Well i can do three things... One, I can just chose to spend hours editing the clip to the song, upload it to YouTube and hope it doesn't get a copyright infringement. Which has happened in the past. That's a-lot of work to end up having the clip pulled from YouTube due to copyright. Two, I can sign up and pay for one of the many websites that provides royalty free music which I have tried in the past. The problem with this method is that the music is trash, and I really do mean that. I've spend countless hours searching these websites for a half decent piece of music but it's all painful to listen to. Three, this is the final solution I thought of the other day. I always loved watching raw footage of surfing where you have just a day of surf and you get to see all the wipeouts, makes and in between action. I really loved this authentic kind of filming.
I've decided that the majority of the surf footage I get from now on is going to be raw footage. I still have an issue with it being filmed from a drone where I can't collect sound which is a hugely important part of raw footage. I've already got some ideas on how to do this and it will be a slow evolution of how I capture it but i'm genuinely excited to begin doing this. It's a lot less stress on me trying to find music to match and not be copyright. It's also just a more enjoyable experience and my favourite part about it. Everyone I film gets a feature, not just the best surfers. I really love showing people footage of themselves that would otherwise never see it. For now i'm really happy with this new decision and excited to start releasing clips this way.