Multiple Tracks - how to keep all edits but one!

I love putting medleys of diff songs together using Audacity. I have one issue where I’m sure there is a better way to handle…

Say I put 10 tracks together. One follows the other but are thoughtfully edited together by mixing the end of one with the start of the other at the exact time I want it. Now i have done the transitions of all the tracks. I then save the project, export the file and listen. I like all but one transition. Say the one I want to change is the the first song into the next. OR, say I want to replace the 2nd song entirely. How do I save all the following 9 songs and their transitions? Can I select all of those tracks to somehow move them all over x min so that I can replace track two with another longer track?

I hope someone understands what I’m trying to explain.

You need to save the Audacity project with each song in it’s own track. That will allow you to go back to the project at a later date and modify or replace any of the songs without affecting the rest of the project.

Note that when you export an Audacity project that has multiple tracks, the tracks are mixed down to create a single audio file, so there is no need to have all the songs on the same track within Audacity.

So if I have 10 songs, there must be 10 Stereo tracks in the project? I had been using putting multiple songs on a single track just alternating between 2 or 3 so I could adjust for volume in each track.

My main question is, what I am happy with the last 9 songs…how they are overlapped together but I just want to make a change to song #2. When I make the change, all the other track’s times change. For example, if I delete song 2 (a 4 min song), it impacts all the other songs (3 through 10). I want to preserve the mixes I did for songs 3 through 10 while I make an edit to #2.

Yes you can have 10 tracks with one song per track, or you can alternate between a smaller number of tracks. The thing to avoid is having all the songs mixed on the same track. Once tracks are mixed together, you can’t un-mix them.

Select the “song 2” audio clip (if it is a separate audio clip, you can just double click on it to select it).
Then, “Edit menu > Remove Special > Split Delete”.
That will delete the selected audio, but the space that it occupied is retained.

I’d suggest that you then add the new song on a new track.

In order to move songs 3 to 10 together, make a “selection” that covers all of those songs, then use the Time Shift tool from within the selection.

Oh wow…many many thanks! I now understand how to select multiple tracks. Can you just explain how to use the time-shift from ‘within’? If I select tracks 2-10 and I want to move it all 30 secs to the left, how do I move it after I select all those tracks?

What I mean is, when using the Time Shift tool:

  • If you try clicking at point A, it will not drag all of the tracks because the click is not within the selected region (only the one clip that you clicked on will move.
  • If you try clicking at point B and dragging, nothing will happen because you are not within an audio clip region.
  • If you click at point C or D, then you can drag all of the clips that are within, or partly within the selected region.


I think i understand but the colours on the picture are not coming through well. In your picture, the area that is ‘turquoise’ is the selected area. So, you are saying that you just click on any area that is selected (whether it is 1 track or multiple) to move it all?

I think the best thing is to just try it.
(“Ctrl + Z” to undo)