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Popular video sharing site Vimeo launched a new service today called Music Store that makes it simple to find and license music for online videos.

One of the biggest problems with creating videos for the web is obtaining a licensee to use copyrighted content. Many fan-made music videos on YouTube and Vimeo, for example, infringe on the copyright of the musicians and publishers by using music without permission.

Vimeo’s music store takes a major step toward solving this problem by letting users obtain a Creative Commons license or buy licenses for non-commercial and commercial use. At start, Vimeo is offering more than 45,000 tracks from many genres. Users can search the library of available tracks by genre or browse more than 100 categories like mood or tempo.

Unfortunately, the first tracks available for licensing aren’t from the most well-known artists. The largest amount of music comes Audiosocket, which controls a catalog of 33,000 songs from upcoming artists, and from FMA, which offers more than 11,000 tracks with a free Creative Commons license.

The pricing is as follows:

• Creative Commons licenses (free)
• Personal, non-commercial, web-use licenses for the casual user ($1.99 per track)
• Commercial, web-use licenses for professional users ($98 per track)

While the prospect of licensing lesser-known music for your videos isn’t the most exciting, this is a start toward finding a middle ground between musicians trying to protect their intellectual property and video creators. Now we just need to hope Vimeo can also come up with arrangements to license big-name artists too, so you can use your favorite Lady Gaga track on that crazy art video you’ve been working on.

Check out Vimeo’s quirky promo video of the new music store below: