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Unprotected music is just that – Unprotectd – I can rip any CD I have to WAV or MP3 which can be used in my productions – It’s just not legal to do that.
To legally use any music you need to acquire certain rights to do so (sync, mechanical, distribution, performance, etc…). With royalty free music you purchase the rights to use it (same with needle drop and other forms but with a different agreement and payment schedule).
If you want to legally use commercial popular music, you should contect an Intellectual Property rights attorney who can guide you along the process (expect to pay many thousands of dollars to acquire those rights).
Certain types of exceptions are allowed for “Fair Use” – Parody being the one that stands out to me. You can look this up (“Fair Use”) but I would not personally use any commercial music in a public forum without first speaking to an IP attorney.