how to isolate instrument from song?

I am new and want to purchase Audacity, but before I do, can someone tell me if I can take out drums, or harmonica from a peticular song I have put into new project on Audacity and record those sounds on new project? And is there a way to isolate background singers and use them in the project too? I would like to voice over these in this new project. Thanks for any help

audacity is free
you should not be paying for it

no software will let you select one voice or instrument unless they were recorded by themselves on a separate track

some software will fake it to various degrees of success
but good enough? you have to decide that.

Hi, when you say some software will do this to a degree, do you know what software that might be? Thanks

not offhand - i never use such utilities
but have seen them andor that feature when i looked for otehr software

google is your friend. put in keywords for what you want.
someone else here may chime in with a program/technique.

you can find one method that might work some in the docs/wiki here

Audacity is free software you don’t have to pay for it… You can freely download and use it.

You can of course make a donation if you wish:

You won’t get any unlocked special feature for it, except for that warm inner feeling some ppl get when they do good deeds :slight_smile:

About your question… as Steve usually says… to separate instruments from a single mixed track is like uncooking a cake and obtaining the original ingredients…

Some software makers may claim their software makes wonders… but I don’t believe in miracles…

Anyway Audacity is a great piece of software and you can’t beat the price (free), so why don’t you download it and give it a try?
Get the latest version from here:

The standard Audacity link for “remove” “isolate” …

Usually the results are not good: complete removal or isolation is near impossible and there will be digital artifacts if using the spectral subtraction method, (e.g. using Kn0ck0ut or ExtraBoy).

I can do it:
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This is not an advertising board it is a help forum.

Offering advice on how to achieve good results is helpful to forum users and is very welcome.
Only offering a commercial service is advertising and is not permitted without written agreement from the Audacity Team.

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The “Vocal Removal” software in Audacity works very simply. It deletes anything exactly in the middle of the stereo show – neither left nor right. This is generally the singer and sometimes bass and drums, too. You don’t get the singer by herself. The singer just vanishes and you’re left with a mono, not stereo show – perfect for Karaoke.

Other than that, you need Vocal Isolation tools or far more serious software than exists as free plugins.

This is a collection I made a while ago.

Voice Removal or Isolation

–Voice Trap
–Extra Boy

See New Messages at the top of the forum.


Actually I hate advertisers, just like the Audacity guys do. I was just showing off a bit.

Of course if I were a nice ‘free community’ guy who gave away info on how to separate audio, I’d probably be stuck in my crappy job forever, and I prefer not to do that right now.

Having said that, I’ve annoyed quite a few people with this new ability. The Elvis camp became annoyed when I unmixed an old song from the 50’s without their permission, and the software people would not be too happy if I packaged their apps into a new app and sold it. Oh, and the craigslist flaggers: don’t get me started! lol.

Now this forum. Sorry Audacity community-my intent was only to show that it could be done.

Yet, the solution sits here on my computer. This addresses the problem of ripping songs onto individual tracks-which include drums, bass, melodic instruments, and vocals.

In any event, I am not offering a service, since one-the service side is not too hot, and two-I could run into copyright problems.

Instead I’m going to try to somehow turn it into an app, maybe. I dunno.

Anyway-Audacity is quite cool, though I still prefer Vegas, as I find it more streamlined and flexible.

Rant, clarification, or just narcissistic rambling on a forum-whatever it is I’m doing-thanks Audacity team for being there.

@saveyourmix, Thanks for the clarification.
I did find your samples to be both interesting and impressive. In fact we originally left your first links in place, but after the links were repeated in your next two posts it tipped over the line. I’m sure that you understand that as this is a very active and prominent forum, we have a constant battle against spam and the only way for us to prevent this forum from becoming overrun with spam is to take a very firm line on this issue.
This has become “off-topic”, so I’ll send you a PM (click on “New Messages” near the top of the page to access your mail).

Saveyourmix, the line between posting links on the Forum that are useful to users and “commercial advertising” isn’t always clear cut. Forum Staff and Crew are trusted to post links to other software (including commercial/closed source) wherever necessary, though links to free, open source programs are always preferred. New users who post a link to commercial software without a detailed explanation of why they are doing so are likely to have the link removed (and also be banned depending on the circumstances). It’s a natural reaction to abuse by spammers.

Our main web site doesn’t currently accept advertising direct from advertisers. We do run Google Ads on all except the front page. If and when you have a legitimate, marketable app or algorithm it would be perfectly appropriate for you to join Google adwords. That would almost certainly mean that if you chose appropriate keywords you would appear somewhere in our rotating Google advertisements.

Similarly on the Wiki Vocal Removal page that Trebor mentions, we already list a few commercial applications for removal/isolation. I don’t know of anything comparable to those Windows apps that is available for Mac/Linux, so it would be nice to list a new recommendable app for those platforms. Therefore if someone from Team or a known, respected user posted a link on that page to new relevant software, that would be fine in principle.

Obviously if yours is a closed source algorithm you don’t want to share, you are not likely to get direct help from the Audacity developers. Were you looking to use Audacity code for an application into which you could place your algorithm? Or for advice on building it into a VST or other format plug-in? If so, please send me a PM.

If you want to discuss your algorithm here in general terms, or ask questions about what features might be nice in an interface, maybe you would get some interest here. If there is such a dialogue going on here and Forum Staff believe what you have is worth recommending on the Wiki page, then it would quite likely appear on that page.


I would like an app, no matter how crude, to remove lead guitar parts for the creation of backing tracks to play along with.
Can anyone help?

No. You have a track that has been mixed together like using milk and egg and tomato sauce for an omelette, not three discrete layers that are stuck to each other and can be pulled apart.

You can read for some ideas.