How To Cut A Track In Audacity: Here’s A Simple Method

Have you ever wondered how they record music?

Have you heard a show on the radio or TV where everything is perfect and no one makes a mistake?

Do you want to try how songs are edited?

If you like music, and you are interested in how songs are made, you must try Audacity, and for sure you will want to invent and modify your favorite songs, but how to cut music in Audacity?

Here we will explain it to you clearly, this is a simple tool, that will allow you to experiment and achieve works that will fill you with satisfaction.

how to cut in audacity

How to cut music in Audacity in simple steps

Do you sometimes record some audio, and you don’t like a part of it? Or do you have a song that you would like to delete a part of, or do you want a fragment of your favorite song to be repeated several times throughout it?

Don’t worry, with Audacity you can do all that and more.

What if it’s complicated?

There is nothing difficult about it, we are going to show you in a logical sequence of steps how to achieve it, and you will realize at the end, that it really is not a task you can’t do.

How to cut a song in audacity?

How to cut a song in Audacity

1. You must have Audacity Software installed on your PC, don’t you have it?

This is not a serious problem, Audacity is downloaded in 3 minutes, and it is completely free, place in your browser download Audacity free, and click on the Download option, you will see in your taskbar the download icon and a descending timer that indicates the remaining time of the download.

Once downloaded, double-click on the Audacity icon and follow the steps to perform the installation, it is a simple process, the Audacity shortcut icon will appear on your desktop, double-click on it to open the software.

2. The audios that are manipulated in Audacity are called Audio Clip, and there are two ways to open them in Audacity.

  • In the “File” menu, in the upper right corner, click and select the “Open” option, find the location of the audio file you want to cut, and double-click on it, then you will see a box where you will see a green progress bar indicating that your file is opening, when the loading is complete, the sound waves will appear in the Audacity window in blue, indicating that the audio is ready to work.
  • Locate in your PC, the location of the audio file that you want to trim, click on it and drag it to the Audacity window and release it, it will load in the same way as in the previous case.

3. There are several ways to cut a part of an audio clip, let’s start with the simplest one.

  • Locate in the audio clip the beginning and the end of the interval of the audio you want to cut, click on the beginning of the interval to cut and without releasing the left mouse button drag to the end of the interval, you will notice that the area has been shaded in white, then press the “Delete” key on the keyboard, and you will notice that the audio interval disappears, without leaving the blank space, the audio clip will be shorter.
  • Locate in the toolbar, at the top edge of the Audacity window, a button called “Selection Tool“, it is easy to locate, it is identified with an “I”, click on that button, also select this tool by pressing “F1”, then click on the beginning of the interval of the audio clip you want to cut.
  • Go to the top menu of Audacity and in the “Edit” option (second from left to right) click on the “Trim Boundary” option, and in the new window that will open, select the “Split” option, a vertical black line will appear at the position you selected, click on the end of the interval, and repeat the previous operation, another vertical black line will appear, then double-click in the middle of the two vertical black lines, and you will notice that the interval will be shaded in white, press on the keyboard “Delete” and you will have cut the interval of the audio click.
  • With keyboard shortcuts there is an easier and faster way to mark the beginning and end of the interval, place the cursor at the beginning of the interval, then press on the keyboard simultaneously the “Control I” keys, the black vertical line appears, now go to the end of the interval, click and press “Control I” again, then double-click in the middle of the two black vertical lines, the blank interval is selected, press “Delete” or “Delete” on the keyboard, you can also go to the “Edit” menu and select the “Delete” option, the interval will disappear.

How do I split a track into several tracks in Audacity?

Producer splitting audio tracks on computer
Producer splitting audio tracks on computer.

This is another operation that does not present major difficulties, let’s see how to do it in a simple way.

  1. Open the audio file that you want to split into several tracks.
  2. Click at the position where you want to split the track.
  3. Press “Control I” to mark where you will divide the track, the vertical black line will appear which is the marker where the track will start.
  4. Position the cursor on the audio clip where the track will end and press “Control-I” again, and the second vertical black line will appear.
  5. Then double-click on the central part of the two vertical black lines, and you will see the marked area shaded in white.
  6. If you want to check that it is the part of audio that you want in the new track, play it and listen to it, with the selected area, just press the space bar on your keyboard and the audio will play, to stop it, press the space bar again.

    Another way to hear the clip, having it selected, look for the “Play” button in the toolbar, with a green arrow pointing to the right, and press it to start the playback, to stop it locate in the toolbar the “Stop” button, which is just to the right of the one just mentioned, it is identified with a black square.
  7. Go to the main menu “Tracks” choose the “Add New” option and click on “Stereo Audio Track”, a new blank track will appear in the Audacity window, below the one you have open.
  8. Having selected the area of the audio clip for your new track, press “F5” to activate the time shifting tool, click on the selected area of the audio clip for the new track and drag it to the beginning of the new track that was created.
  9. To save the new track, press “F1”, and double-click on it to select it, go to the main “File” menu and select the “Export” option and then “Export Selected Audio”, then a dialog box will open for you to indicate the name of the track, the place on your PC where you will store it and the format you want the audio in, MP3, WAV, etc.
  10. To create more tracks, repeat the procedure.
  11. If you want to split the audio into several tracks at once, select the area of the first track you want to create by clicking on the beginning and dragging to the end you want, release the click and go to the main menu in the “Edit” tab, choose the “Trim Boundary” option and select “Split”.

You will notice that two thicker black lines will identify the section of the audio for your new track, repeat this operation for the number of tracks you wish to split the audio into, and then follow the above procedure of creating the track with each segment of the ones you just split.

How do I edit the length of a song?

Audacity has two tools for editing the length of an audio, either a song or any other audio.

Depending on the purpose you want to achieve, you can decide which one to use, the first one is “Change Rhythm” and the second one is “Change Speed”.

Let’s see what we can do with each one.

How do I edit the length of a song?
How do I edit the length of a song?

Change Rhythm

With this option you can change the rhythm of the audio, without affecting the tone of the audio, to apply it we will do the following:

  1. With the audio open in Audacity, double-click on it to select it, or press “Control A”.
  2. Go to the main menu in the “Effects” tab and select the option “Change Rhythm”, a dialog box will open where you will find a horizontal scroll bar, if you move it to the right you will shorten the duration of the clip, and if you move it to the left you will lengthen the duration of the clip.

    You can go directly to the “Duration (seconds)” option, where you find “From” in an inactive text box and “To” in a text box where you can place the duration you want for the audio clip.
  3. To hear the audio before executing the change you can click on the “Preview” button, if you are not satisfied press cancel, if you are satisfied with the result, click on the “OK” button.
  4. To save the audio clip with the edited duration, go to the main menu in the “File” tab and select the “Export” option and then “Export as…” the format you want, MP3, WAV, etc.

Change Speed

By changing the speed of the audio clip, you can shorten or lengthen its duration, but keep in mind that this action will affect the tone of the audio, so if you lengthen the duration, the audio will have a deeper sound, if you shorten the duration, the audio will have a higher pitched sound.

To change the speed of the audio clip, and thus lengthen or shorten the duration of the audio, follow these steps:

  1. With the audio clip open in Audacity, double-click on it to select it, or press “Control A”.
  2. 2. Go to the main menu in the “Effects” tab and select the option “Change speed”, a dialog box will open where you will find a horizontal scroll bar, if you move it to the right you will shorten the duration of the clip, and if you move it to the left you will lengthen it.

    You have the alternative of selecting a rpm format from the old vinyls, and you are presented with the three options in which the vinyls used to come in 33, 45, and 78 rpm, or choose directly in the new duration text box the hours, minutes, and seconds in which you need to edit the duration of the audio clip.
  3. To hear the audio before executing the change, you can click on the “Preview” button, and then on the “OK” button if you are satisfied with the result.
  4. To save the audio clip with the edited duration, go to the main menu in the “File” tab and select the “Export” option and then “Export as…” the format you want, MP3, WAV, etc.

According to what you need to do you can choose one of these two options, if you work with songs the ideal is to choose the change of rhythm, this will not present variations of any type in the tone of the song, you should only have the precaution of listening to the “previews”, this way you will be able to decide if it is exactly what you want, in the same way verify the length of the audio to know if it is the one you want.

Finally, you have seen that Audacity, despite being a free and open-source software, has features that will allow you to do everything that can be done with an audio, from cutting it, lengthen it, reduce it, divide it into a number of tracks, record them separately, and has several methods to work, from keyboard shortcuts that facilitate the work, and a variety of other functions that you should try.

About Maggie Holding

Hello! My name is Maggie and I am a proud Editor/Author for PlayTheTunes. Coming From South Carolina, USA, my whole life I've sang and played the guitar and flute! I love music with a passion, and am ecstatic to help others in their own music journey!