Ok I'm an idiot, but how to do this: (Track recording)

Hey folks.

Forgive me but my brain can’t figure this out:

Recorded a music track (1) it’s fine.
Now I go to record on another track (2) whilst the first is playing but it always records at the end of where the 1st track stopped?!

I know it’s gonna be obvious but how do I record at the start of track 2 whilst track 1 is playing?


R and Shift+R are the keys to go back and forth between add on to the end and start a new track.

You can either use the right keys, or you can change the key order in a preference.

Preferences > Recording > [X] Record on a New Track (select).

R used to always start a new track. zero point zero people liked that—massive complaints—so the default is add to the end.


Ok. Still got the same problem:

I record track 1 - No problems

I create track 2 (Generate new track) - I select and put the cursor to the start of this track but it records at the end of track 1.

I want to record at the start of track 2 whilst track 1 is playing.

There must be an easy way?!


AHH. Audacity gets confused with a mix of stereo and mono tracks I think.

You’re overdubbing, right?

I think you’re working too hard.

Record track 1. Stop.

Press the R key and it will automatically start a new track.

If it doesn’t, try Shift+R.

The R key and Shift+R are opposites of each other. One adds on to the first track and the other starts a new one.


Overdubbing yeah. I think it’s the Shift and R thing you mention. But that doesn’t seem to work if I create the tracks beforehand (generate tracks before recording)

I wanted to have a few blank tracks to then record different parts and record and select the best take from each so I created lots of blank separate tracks. When I do this it often records only at the end of the previous recorded track.

Hope that makes sense.

You can’t create a blank track and then “fill it up.”

Once you sort which of the keys starts a new track (mine is “R”), it will keep starting new tracks each time you Stop and hit that key. All the old tracks will play to your headphones unless you steer them with each MUTE and SOLO selection (on the left).

For example, I have a backing track.
R starts a new track and plays the backing track > Stop
R starts another new track and plays the first ones > Stop
R starts a third new track…etc.

Screen Shot 2021-04-04 at 12.40.26 PM.png
There’s no blue waves in 2, 3, and 4 because I don’t have my microphone connected.


Ah ok thanks

For accuracy, you can, but it’s not usually the best way in Audacity.
Normally in Audacity you would either just use “Record” or “Shift + Record” and let Audacity create tracks as necessary.

Might you be referring to Punch and Roll Record ?

Not specifically. You can simply

  1. Create a new track from “Tracks menu > Add New” (mono or stereo to suit the number of recording channels being used)
  2. Press “R” to start recording into that track.