Newbie problem! Need help bad!

Hello everyone,
I am desperate.
I have cut a one hour demo radio aircheck in Audacity for Mac.
My boss wants it in TWO tracks: music in track one. My voice patter and song intros etc are in track two.
He wants them exported to him in that same way. He wants the TWO separate tracks so he can jazz up the voice and music the way he wants. So, I have done this.
The voice tracks were cut one at a time, not in one continuous session. (I had to do several takes) So I have 13 separate voice tracks. They were cut in the correct places with the corresponding song but when I go to combine them on one track, they don’t stay in the right place on the timeline. They end up right next to each other. Ok, so re-aligned them all over again by hand. So now they are all on one track in the proper order and sequence with the music track just above it.
But when I try to export the whole project, the voice tracks get moved 5-10 seconds out of alignment!
Does anyone know what I’m trying to do?
And if so, can you please PLEASE help me?
I have to do this somehow.
I’m a newbie to make matters worse than they are so please be very clear.
Thank you and grateful in advance!

The desperation method from right where you are is de-select all the tracks and Generate > Silence. Pick a duration longer than the whole show. When you export, select the silent track along with everything else and that track will preserve all the gaps and production timing.

Silence is invisible during the show, so nobody but you and I will know it’s there.

Cut off anything hanging out past the end.

I understand the next version of Audacity doesn’t need this trick.


You could have done this Silent Track thing at the beginning and not have to go through the manual re-timing (I’m guessing).


I have cut a one hour demo radio aircheck in Audacity for Mac.

Does it go to an actual air show? There is an interesting trap with MP3. Chances are terrific you used MP3 downloaded music. That means the music is going to sound compressed, honky or tinkly when you make the second MP3 for delivery to the client. If the show does go to air, please know the music is going to turn to garbage if they create an MP3 podcast (third pass).

If the client will not accept a WAV delivery, you should pick the highest possible quality MP3: 256 or 320. If you can’t stand the increase in file sizes, then that’s a real problem.


Hi Koz,
First, no - this will not be broadcast over the air.
The big cheese who wants this is using it for a sample promotional piece.

Would you be kind enough to “walk” me thru the desperation method again?
A little slower this time and assume I know almost nothing about Audacity. (almost true)

If I can do this, you’ll be my hero. My boss wants me to start over using Adobe Audition CC but I can’t bear the thought of learning another program!

To summarize:

My project has about 50 minutes of music (16 songs) and 10 minutes of spaces which represent commercial stop sets and DJ banter. All of this is in track 1 in the correct order, just like an hour of a typical music radio station.

In tracks 2 - 14 below the music, are 13 voice cuts which represent the DJ banter, song intros etc. I cut these while playing the music track in my headphones so it would sound “live” and be in sync with the song intros etc.

My boss wants this entire project with track 1 just like I have it and track 2 (the voice cuts) ALL IN ONE TRACK but correctly in sync with the music cuts as the 13 tracks are now.
When I cut and paste, the voice tracks don’t line up in the exact same place on the timeline from where they were!
This of course, has me talking while a song is playing and other out of sync things.
So, I tried cutting and pasting all 13 in one track and lining them up by listening and moving each talk segment to its proper place on the timeline to jibe with the music track. So far so good, right?
I thought so until I exported it all to my boss in WAV and the voice clips moved out of their spots by about 5-10 seconds!!

That is my dilemma.
If your desperation method will solve this, I’ll do it if you can explain it just a bit differently?
Or, after reiterating the dilemma, maybe there’s another way?
Why are the clips moving just a bit?
Do I need to trim them?
What am I missing?
The cut and paste should have worked, don’t you think?


You can select a track by clicking just above MUTE. The track you selected will change to a different gray.

Select multiple tracks by holding Shift while you click. Select nothing by clicking in any dead part of the timeline window and all the tracks will change to non-selected gray. You can watch it happen. It’s similar to other programs where you have to select multiple things.

Select nothing, no tracks.
Top of the window > Generate > Silence. Pick a duration longer than your show. If you have an hour show, pick, oh, say, hour and five minutes. > OK.

You should get a new track (probably at the bottom of your show) with a straight line in it. That’s what digital silence looks like. The straight line should stick out on the right, it should be slightly longer than the longest part of your show.

Hold Shift and click select (just above MUTE) all the voice tracks you aligned, processed and finished … and the silent track.

File > Export Selected in whatever format you want, or that the client wants. All the voice segments should export in perfect time and synchronization to each other.

You can do that with the music track, too, if it has any production timing hitches or holes in it or doesn’t start from zero on the timeline. You can preserve the holes and silences by clicking all the music tracks and the silent track.

File > Export Selected.

For best interchangeability between clients, don’t use spaces or punctuation marks in your filenames except -dash- and underscore. If you need dates, use the ISO form. Today is 2016-09-30 (or at least it is here).


If you ever wondered why people do that odd filename thing, this is why. Those files will transmit and open successfully on all three major computer types, no question, no magic.

If you need split second timing for your show coordination and the client wants MP3, then you’re going to have a problem. MP3 doesn’t do split second timing. It shifts timing a little and you can’t stop it. Use Audacity default WAV (Microsoft) 44100, 16-bit, Stereo (or Mono) if possible.

Let me know if you need more words.