How can I make a sound in a song softer?

Hi! I’m new to the forum. Let me explain.

I imported a complete mp3 song into Audacity for some minor editing, and I realized that a specific sound in the song sounds incredibly sharp and jarring to the ears. Is it possible to soften or dull specific points in the song to make it sound less grating? I’ve seen similar function in other software, like FX controllers and equalizers, but I can’t figure out the equivalent in here. Also, I;m not sure if there’s anything I really can do since it’s a complete song.

I;m not sure if there’s anything I really can do since it’s a complete song.

Right. Audacity can’t take a song apart into individual voices, instruments and sounds.

So if someone is singing at the same time the objectionable sound happens, you’re dead.

Also, as I was reading that I’m prompted to ask how you are listening? I have a set of earbuds that can make my ears bleed from certain professionally mastered, purchased songs.

If you can select the sound in the mix, you can apply Effect > Equalization or even Effect > Amplify and just straight reduce the volume. There is no tool to point at the whole song and tell it to “make it pretty.”

You’ll need the Zoom tools to “go into” the blue waves and see where the edit has to be. It’s handy to know SpaceBar will start and stop playback.

Zoom (Windows)
– Drag-select something on the timeline and zoom into it. Control-E
– Zoom out a little bit. Control-3
– Zoom out full. Control-F

– Shift-ScrollWheel or Shift-TouchPadScrub will shift the timeline view left and right (sooner and later).

Change the timeline so it doesn’t shift by itself:
– Edit > Preferences > Tracks > [_] Update display while playing. (de-select)
Note: Update Display is good during recording.

That and labels will help you select something. Place labels at the start and stop of the noise. Labels are sticky and make it easier to select something by dragging.

Piece of cake, right?