Fixing various tempo changes in one file/song

I am using Audacity version 2.0.3 with Windows 7 64 bit, SP1. I have a track that I’m trying to fix that I downloaded from It’s an MP3 file and the tempo varies. I’m trying to set the tempo for the entire song/file to correct the variations in tempo. I’ve tried using the Change Speed and Change Tempo effects but nothing seems to happen. I need the key to stay the same as I will be using this track as an accompaniment track with my band. Can anyone tell me the “right” way to correct the varying tempos in my track?


Nothing happened? What happens if you select a portion of the song and make a big change. Make a change that’s so big that nobody will ever use it, but just to see if the tool works.

Is the song wandering because the original player couldn’t play? So they were on pitch, just out of time? Effect > Change Speed should change the rhythm of the piece without changing the pitch of the notes. These tools are not perfect and there will always be little musical errors in the show.


Did you get any kind of error message? I agree… Try somenthing drastic like a tempo change of 50% or 100%…

You’ll need to change the tempo since you want to maintain pitch/key.

It’s an MP3 file and the tempo varies.

You’ll have to change the tempo in sections if the tempo currently varies and you want to make it more-constant.

I have no idea if you’ll get acceptable results… You can sometimes get artifacts when you change tempo & pitch independently, and you might get a glitch where you suddenly change/adjust the temp.

It’s fairly normal for the tempo to vary a bit if the musician(s) don’t use a click-track. And/or there are sometimes intentional tempo changes throughout a song. Or, the tempo can vary from take-to-take which makes it difficult (or impossible) to comp (mix & match) parts from different takes.

Normally in this situation, you would just play in time with the tempo of the track you are “stuck with”.

If the original backing-track was made with a click-track, you could adjust by a constant-known factor. But, adjusting the tempo is something I’d try to avoid if at all possible.