How to Remove Vocals From Songs on Apple or Mac Computers

Tweak your sound files to remove the vocal track.

If you have an Apple Mac computer and you want to remove the vocals from a song or piece of music, you're in luck. You don't even have to pay for proprietary software that doesn't give you control over the vocal-removing process. Free open-source software exists to take the vocals out of almost any music track, giving you an instrumental version suitable for use as a karaoke track or when you just don't want to hear the words of a song.

Step 1

Download Audacity, the free software best suited to this task. Double-click the downloaded image to mount it for installation.

Step 2

Create a folder in your Mac's "Applications" folder called "Audacity." Drag "Audacity" from your mounted image into this folder to install the software.

Step 3

Double-click Audacity to launch. Drag your audio file into the main window of Audacity to open for editing. Your audio file will be displayed as two linked blue waveforms.

Step 4

Open the pull-down menu in the top left-hand corner of your audio file and select "Split Stereo Track."

Step 5

Click the gray panel at the left end of the lower audio track to select this track.

Step 6

Open Audacity's "Effects" menu and select "Invert."

Step 7

Open the pull-down menu for the first track and select "Mono." Repeat for the second track.

Step 8

Open Audacity's "File" menu and select "Export as MP3." Select the destination for your new vocal-free track and click "Save."

Things You'll Need

  • Apple Mac with Internet access

  • Stereo audio track in MP3, WAV or OGG format

Tip

The higher the quality of your original track, the more cleanly your vocals will be removed. Make sure to only work with a stereo track: this process will have no effect on a monaural music file.

references & resources