How to Have a Background Music Player on Tumblr
By Allen Bethea
The right background music can create a welcoming atmosphere that encourages visitors to stay and explore your Tumblr blog. Although Tumblr does not officially support or encourage the use of background music, the platform does give you the ability to access your blog theme's HTML code and add this feature yourself.
SoundCloud Music Player
Tumblr officially supports the audio player widget from the music-focused social media platform SoundCloud. In fact, you can post a SoundCloud song directly to your Tumblr blog, as SoundCloud provides the HTML code you need to embed a song within your Tumblr blog theme: find a song's "<iframe>" embed code by clicking its "Share" and then "Embed" buttons, and then copy the code and paste it into your Tumblr blog theme immediately after the "</head>" tag or directly above the "</body>" tag. Save your changes so that the song plays automatically whenever someone visits your Tumblr blog.
Third-Party Music Players
Several third-party music player widgets can also work for this purpose. For example, the StreamPad, WikiPlayer or Billy Music Player websites can help you build a custom audio widget that will play MP3s from the Web or the audio portion of YouTube videos. Create your custom player, and then enable the "AUTOPLAY" option so that you can add its embed code to your Tumblr blog's theme.
HTML5 Audio Files
The HTML5 standard enables you to play background music with as little as three lines of code. The "<audio>" tag needs the URL for the MP3, WAV or OGG audio file you want to play. For example, if you have an MP3 file with the URL "http://copyrightfreesongs.com/mysong.mp3," you would add the following code to your Tumblr blog:
<audio autoplay> <source src="http://copyrightfreesongs.com/mysong.mp3" type="audio/mpeg"> </audio>
The "autoplay" attribute causes the song to play automatically whenever someone visits your blog.
One reason Tumblr gives for not supporting background music is that "it’s kind of tacky!" Even if you put a lot of thought into the music you will use, it may not appeal to some of your visitors. In addition, background music can increase the time it takes for your blog pages to load -- for some visitors, the wait may not be worth it and they will simply visit another website instead. Finally, if you use music you did not create yourself or have explicit permission to use, you may unintentionally violate the copyright owner’s rights and affect their livelihood.
Allen Bethea has written articles on programming, web design,operating systems and computer hardware since 2002. He holds a Bachelor of Science from UNC-Chapel Hill and AAS degrees in office technology, mechanical engineering/drafting and internet technology. Allen has extensive experience with desktop and system software for both Windows and Linux operating systems.