Drum Beats For Audacity

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Jan 27, 2008  There is a click track in Audacity that you can tweak to the beats per minute that you want. I've used a cheap drum machine, loops off of an M-Audio CD, and drum sounds from a Yamaha synth that I bought at a garage sale for $30.00. Mar 03, 2019  Hi Audacity Pros, I am a noob and I am trying to remove drum beats from the following audio file but not having any luck. I tried Vocal Remover +.

Properly mixing the various elements of a song is an important step in producing professional-sounding music. Generally, the more parts and effect processors an unmixed song contains, the more complicated the mixing process will be. However, even songs containing very few tracks -- such as a song with only a vocal and a drum track -- can present a challenge to mixing amateurs unaware of some basic tools, such as ducking. Audacity, an open-source audio recording and editing application, includes all of the necessary functionality to properly mix songs of this type.


Launch Audacity and load the respective audio files containing the vocals and drums you want to mix onto separate tracks. Open the 'File' menu and select 'Open.' Navigate in the file browser pop-up to the vocal track file and double-click it. Audacity loads the file on a track. To load the drum track file, open the 'File' menu and select 'Audio' from the 'Import' sub-menu. Locate the file in the file browser pop-up and double-click it. Audacity loads the drum track file on a second track.


Import a second copy of the vocal track onto a new track using the 'Import' command as described in the last step. When it loads, click on the 'M' button in its track header to mute it for now.


Click 'Play' and listen to the two unmuted tracks together all the way through without making adjustments to volume or any other parameter. This is your chance to determine what needs to be done to make the vocals and beat work together. In this specific case, chances are that the drum track will drown out or over-dominate the vocals at certain points, although the opposite may also be true. Make note of any problems you hear in the way they sound together.


Set the relative volume for both tracks while listening all the way through a second time. If the drums are too loud relative to the vocals, reduce their volume by clicking and dragging the volume slider in the drum track's track header, and vice-versa for the vocals. Continue adjusting their relative volumes until you are satisfied that both parts can more or less be heard clearly throughout the song. There is no need to be very precise at this point -- some further steps will be taken to help the vocals and drums work together.

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Unmute the second vocal track, created in Step 2, and set its volume slider to the same level as the first vocal track.


Pan the first vocal track slightly left and the second vocal track slightly right. This will 'widen' the vocals's presence in the stereo field, helping the vocals to rise above the drums and become the listener's focus of attention. Panning them further left and right will increase this effect. Listen to the track all the way through while experimenting with different panning positions until you are satisfied with the result. Odds are, however, that the drums will still over-dominate the vocals at certain points.


Click on the drum track's track header to make it Audacity's focus.


Open the 'Effect' menu and select 'Auto Duck.' Auto Duck's interface appears. This plug-in serves to subtly reduce the volume of one track when the other track, called the 'control track,' hits a certain volume threshold. Using this plug-in, the drum track's volume will be automatically reduced whenever elements of the vocal track are heard simultaneously. This process, called 'ducking,' is frequently used by professionals to help lead vocals remain dominant in the mix. However, some adjustments must be made to Auto Duck's parameters to make the effect more subtle.


Enter '-4' in the 'Duck Amount' field in Auto Duck's interface. The default is -12, which is an appropriate setting in the context of podcast or radio production, but which will be too strong for musical purposes.


Click 'OK' in Auto Duck's interface. Audacity processes and applies the effect to the tracks. Note that this can be reversed by opening the 'Edit' menu and selecting 'Undo.'


Listen to the track all the way through with the ducking effect applied. The drums will subtly reduce in volume when the vocals occur simultaneously. In most cases, the volume reduction will be unnoticeable to the average listener. However, if you feel the ducking effect is too strong, repeat Steps 8 and 9, but enter a 'Duck Amount' parameter of '-2.' This will produce an even more subtle ducking effect. To increase the ducking effect, enter a lower negative value (e.g., -6). At this point, you have completed a basic vocals and beat mix.


Add effects such as reverb or compression to the vocal and drum tracks. Compression in particular will help tracks with too much dynamic range -- too many parts that are too loud or too soft -- sound more consistent in volume. Compression is applied to drum tracks in professional mixing almost as a matter of course. Reverb will help the vocal track sound smoother and roomier and, if applied to both tracks at once, will further help the vocals and drums to blend together. Equalization is another powerful tool, making it possible to place individual voices in their own 'space' within the audio spectrum. Outside of basic technical strategy, mixing is as much a creative pursuit as musical performance. Experiment with different effect processors, ducking levels and panning positions until you find a sound you like.


  • Walk away from the mix for a few hours every so often. Even professional mix engineers find they lose perspective when they spend too much time mixing a single track. Putting it aside for awhile, or even overnight, will usually help to refresh your perspective on the track and help to identify problems you might have overlooked during an earlier session.

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About the Author

Jason Savage has been a freelance writer since 2005. He has authored technical and procedural documents for a variety of clients, while his journalism and fiction have appeared in 'Monday Magazine,' 'The Pedestal' and other publications. Savage holds B.A. in English and a B.F.A. Antigone jean anouilh translated barbara bray pdf. in music.

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Savage, Jason. 'How to Combine Beat & Vocals in Audacity.' Small Business - Chron.com, http://smallbusiness.chron.com/combine-beat-vocals-audacity-31719.html. Accessed 11 January 2020.
Savage, Jason. (n.d.). How to Combine Beat & Vocals in Audacity. Small Business - Chron.com. Retrieved from http://smallbusiness.chron.com/combine-beat-vocals-audacity-31719.html
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