Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Audacity Audio Editing Freeware

Buenos dias, amigos!

Have you ever wanted to edit a troublesome f-bomb out of a piece of music? There is plenty of software around to accomplish this, but you sure don’t want to shell out a bunch of cash to do it.

Well, it is not too hard, and I recently dusted off my copy of Audacity’s freeware to clean up a Man Man song that was part of a show I was doing sound for. Here are the basic instructions of what you will need to do:

1. Download and install Audacity. You can get it for free at

2. Use Audacity to browse for and open the song you want to edit. It has to be in .mp3, .wma, or .wav format. Always make a copy to mess with, as you do not want to screw up your original source.

3. Use the Audacity playback controls (at the top left of the screen) to find the part of the song you want to edit, and then hit the pauseicon. Note that the music is displayed graphically on the stereo scope patterns, and you can zoom in (using the menus at the top), and visually find and select the part of the song you are going to want to edit.

4. Mess with the zoom to get a good close up of the scope pattern, and play and rewond the song until you figure out exactly where to place the cursor at the start of the word. Then you can drag the cursor to select the entire word of phrase you want to edit. Make sure you select the stop icon so the song does not continue playing.

5. Then you can select the “Generate” menu, and choose what you want to replace your selection with. You can choose “Silence”, “Tone” or “Effect”. Be careful with the effects you choose, because at higher volume levels sometimes you can still tell what they were originally singing about.

6. Play it back to make sure you are satisfied. You can always hit Control/Z to undo if you don’t like what you did.

By the way, you will also need to download Lame for Audacity to be able to save your work. Audacity is unable to provide the mechanism to save your work in its original file format for legal reasons, but you can download this file and install it yourself.

Next time we will cover the software you can use to covert those pesky .wma file to mp3s.


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