Overdubbed by mistake

Mac OS X 10.8.5. Audacity 2.0.5 (the README.txt says that, but the About under Audacity on the program itself is greyed out and unavailable).

I am a complete novice, have never used Audacity to record before, only to play with recordings made elsewhere. I was using an older version of Audacity (also greyed out, so I don’t know which), when I recorded an interview yesterday. I started and stopped it a couple of times. Today I play it back and one part of the voice recording is overlayed on another. So neither are really possible to transcribe. Can I separate these two tracks? If so, how? I am so much the novice I couldn’t work out if I had overdubbed or what I had done, completely unwittingly.

If you stopped Audacity dead and started it up again, Audacity would have started a new track directly under the old one. They will both play at the same time unless you tell them not to. That’s not overdubbing unless you set that up for your guitar solos earlier in the week.

Use the SOLO and MUTE buttons to the left of each track to select one or the other. Did I hit it?


Many Audacity tools stop working if you PAUSE rather than Stop.

Next time you do this, Pause the recording and set up for the next session (don’t touch the computer while Audacity is in Pause), or Stop and use Append Record (Shift-R) to jam the new recording at the end of the old one.


You hit it both times. Thank you for such excellent help to a beginner!

We are overjoyed you didn’t ask us to make your voice just like Justin Timberlake.