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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Help with Audacity!

Edit: See subsequent postings where we get into Audacity.

Hello, my girlfriend and I were hoping to record ourselves singing a duet to our favourite song with the actual music. I was wondering if it's possible to take the mp3 file in Garageband and then mute the lyrics, which I'd later replace with overlapping tracks of her and my vocal contribution. I'm pretty new to Garageband so be nice. :D

And if it's not even possible, does anyone know of any other software that can do this? Preferably freeware?:greedy:

Haha, thanks guys!

PS: I stumbled across this Audio Hijack, but I'm unsure if it's capable of doing what I want.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for the link, but that thread doesn't really answer my question. I guess in addition to knowing if muting an mp3's lyrics is possible, I need to know how to do it.
 

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It's a little hit and miss but it can be done in Audacity.

First you import the tune from Project, Import Audio.

Then, in the waveform window, select Split Stereo Track from the drop down list next to the name of the track. This will give you two separate waves with a drop down list next to the track name in each.

Then, select one of the two waveforms, it doesn't matter which, but make sure you don't select both. Once selected, go to the Effect menu and select Invert.

Finally, go to the drop down list (next to each track name) and select Mono.

All you have to do then is export the track as mp3.

This produces mixed results, as I said. Sometimes you get a perfect karaoke track, more often than not there is a faint echo of the original vocals and now and then they're still there altogether.

Don't worry if these instructions sound hard to follow, they'll make perfect sense with the program open in front of you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Macuserforlife, you are THE MAN. Thanks so much! And also, thanks for the second link, I see they're talking about Audacity in that thread too. Awesome stuff. I've installed it and I'm trying it out now, following forlife's instructions.

:clap:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
All right, question:

Everything seemed to work fine until I listened to my exported file and I got something really weird; like none of the variations you described. It's basically a really quiet track with the occasional "plunk plunk" sound. The "audio waves" for the track, (which I happened to open in Audacity instead of iTunes) are correspondingly tiny. What could have caused this? I set both tracks to "Mono"...was I not supposed to do that?
 

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The small file which you opened in Audacity is the likely the .aup project file. The project file is a pointer to the data which would be found in the yourtrackname_data file. Export the track as mp3 and then drag it into iTunes. It will keep the mp3 associated with Audacity.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
I've been trying different combinations of "Mono-having", if you will. The first "small" track that I described sounding like a bunch of little blips was set to Mono on both splits, and the other two, which had Mono set for one track and right speaker for the other, had zero success in silencing lyrics.

In any case, I dragged my first double-Mono version into iTunes but it sounds the same. :(

Any more ideas? I've hit a brick wall, it seems.
 

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Hi Endor,

Sorry I missed your response last night. I've never experienced the "plunk plunk" that you mentioned but I have sometimes ended up with very faint audio altogether. It depends how the song was originally recorded. You do definitely need to set BOTH tracks to Mono though. It's been years since I installed it but, if I remember correctly, you need to get the LAME mp3 encoder from elsewhere. Is it possible that this may be the problem? Essentially you're muting a certain range when you invert one track so you're bound to lose a little music too. If the song was recorded entirely on or very near the central part of the track, you'll lose most of it.

Keep trying, maybe searching other Audacity related boards. The way I described for you has worked well for me over the years but it may be that your particular song is just problematic.

On that note, what is the song you're looking for? My wife is a singing teacher and I may have a genuine karaoke version of it somewhere here.

All the best,

B.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Yeah I got the LAME thing no problem, you can't even begin to extract the file as an mp3 otherwise. It probably is just my luck that the song is problematic. It's "Starlight" by Muse...not likely a karaoke version exists, but thanks for the thought. I also searched for a midi without any luck.

However, since I've encountered all this difficulty, I'm sort of considering doing my own cover version of the song in Garageband. It won't sound as good, but hey, it'd be something. And I'll probably keep fiddling around with Audacity too, and like you said, check out some other boards.

Thanks for your interest:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I realize this is now kind of way off-topic of my original thread title, but, does anyone know if it's possible to change a midi like the one posted above so that it sounds more like the actual song?
 

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That's impossible, sorry. :(

The only thing you could do (aside from altering the original as mentioned before) is look for Karaoke versions of the song on CD's that you could order. But, there's a good chance that they're midi files too, unfortunately.
 

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It's "Starlight" by Muse...not likely a karaoke version exists, but thanks for the thought.
O' ye of little faith!

Where do you want me to send it? It's 4MB so you'll need an email account that can handle that sort of download.

All the best,

B.
 
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