The Basics of Music Editing | April K | Skillshare

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The Basics of Music Editing

teacher avatar April K, Never stop striving.

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

7 Lessons (34m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Downloading the Software

    • 3. Navigating the Software

    • 4. Copy-Paster Group Project

    • 5. Cut It Up Group Project

    • 6. Get Together Group Project

    • 7. The Manipulator Group Project

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About This Class

This class is geared towards complete beginners. We will be working in the Mixpad program (NCH Software). You can download it here. There is a version you can purchase, but we will be using the free version, which has all the tools you need to start editing music. Information about where to find it and how to download it will also be discussed in the second video.

The beginning of this class will focus on navigating the software, then we will jump right into editing. The videos are meant to go hand-in-hand with using the software, so it is best to follow along with a video to one side and Mixpad on the other.

Your class project will be divided into a series of ways to manipulate an instrumental song. You will need a SoundCloud account in order to post your project.

Congrats on taking the first step in your music editing career!

Meet Your Teacher

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April K

Never stop striving.


Hi, I'm April. I am pursuing a BS degree in Information Systems and Supply Chain Management and have started my Masters in Information Technology and Management. I also work in a digital studio where I consult peers on digital projects regarding composition as well as attend workshops throughout the week to gain knowledge in a vast amount of software. My goal is to become a "Jack-of-all-trades" and a master of none.  

As an instructor here on Skillshare, my motto for students comes from Thomas Jefferson (although, it's debatable of whether he ever said this):

"If you want something you've never had, you have to do something you've never done."

Learning software is never easy (trust me, I know...I know) but if you set your mind to it and... See full profile

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1. Introduction: welcome to the basics of music editing course. First, what is music editing? It is the process of stylistically changing and manipulating music for entertainment videos . For personal enjoyment. This course provides the tools you need to begin your journey on music editing. The course is mainly hands on or you'll fall along with the video lectures step by step. The videos are mainly framed for group projects while you work along with the instructor. As you learn after weeks lecture, you will complete a project independently. To fully grasp the concepts. There would be a series of four projects copy paste or project the Cut It Up Project, the Get Together Project and the manipulator. These projects build upon each other, so by the end of the course, you will have one cohesive and unique project again. Welcome to the basics of music editing and congratulations on the beginning of your music editing journey. 2. Downloading the Software: If you haven't already, you can download mix pad by a search again in the Google box. It will be the one of the first links that pops up. So this one right here, just click on it or not to get you to the Instigate Software website, just click the download button and install the software. There is a paid version, but we will be using the free version, which has everything we need to start editing music, so let's get started. 3. Navigating the Software: Now let's familiarize ourselves with the software. You might get this message that pops up when you first open expat. This is on Lee to verify that you using mixed pad for home use and not for a licence use. So go ahead and click. The first option to certify is for non commercial use on the mixed pad will go ahead and load out. Here we have the tracks. This is where we are going to place our music clips and they extend horizontally. Here we have the play button, the pause button and the stop button. And then here we have all the tasks we need to start editing. Now I'm going to briefly explain some of the buttons, but don't worry, you will become for me with them as we work through some example edits as well as working on your own projects. Here we have low clip. This is where we'll load the audio files into mix path that will be working with which is strictly different from the open button, which opens files that are already in mixed pad format. Here we have the editing tap. This is where will mainly be working in once we load a clip into mix pad, and here we have the FEC's TAP, which is mainly for manipulating a clip on how the project sounds, such as amplifying the sound or creating a course effect. Next will begin a group project. 4. Copy-Paster Group Project: okay. The project that we're going to be doing is called Call Peep Eyster. You will be doing a similar project. Hopefully, after this video tutorial, it would be best to follow along with mixed patch of one side and this video open toe another. So go ahead 1/2 mixed pad open. We're going to click Load clip. I'm just going to load a clip. I dragged to my desktop and you'll load the same. So you're going to use to provide it. File this file. Apologize will be in your files for your convenience. Mixed Powerball. Go ahead and create the clip, and this is what it looks like when it's loaded into mixed bad. So if you drag this over, you'll be able to see the entirety of the clip, and we can see the timeframe down here. Just follow the line straight down your baby to see the time frame. If you want to zoom in and you have the mouths, just roll. The middle mouse will back and forth. If you're using a laptop without a mouse, just hold the control button and click the plus sign or the minus. Sign to zoom out so What we're gonna be doing is a simple copy paste ER, which is basically just taking one point of the clip and copying it into another. So we're going to do a very simple edit to start out. So I'm going to go ahead and play the clip What we're going to be knowing if you're familiar with the song, we're going to copy the untrue and repeat it twice before letting the song plate. If you are not familiar with the song, it would be best to go ahead and give a listen through one time to familiarize yourself with what you be working with. So I'm gonna go ahead and I'm gonna let the song play until the beginning part of the Andrew. Then I'm going to go ahead and click Paul's. Be careful not to click Stop. If you click Stop. It'll actually drag this timer back to the beginning of the clip, so you'll want to click Paul's. So let's go ahead and let the intro plea, so I'm gonna pause it right there. Then what you're going to do in order to mark your position in the song, you're going to go ahead and click right on that line. What this does is place a time stamp on that specific area. It doesn't affect the music in any way. It is strictly just for visual. So now what I'm gonna do that I have. Exactly. If I want, I'm going to go up to the editing tab. I'm going to make sure this clip is highlighted. And then I'm going to click split clip now to make room to call B and paste the clip. I'm going to go ahead and drag this down just a bit. I'm going to click on the clip that I want to copy. I'm going toe hold control and push. See? And you can also do this right up here in the editing tap. But I'm gonna use the shortcut keys, and then I'm just gonna police it. And this random spot, whole control click V. Now, if I play it through like this was actually gonna happen, is going is going to fill silence in this space. So I need to drag this clip back. I'm going to go ahead and drag all the clips back and I'm going to hit play again. So now that we have copy and paste of the clip. There is one little thing we need to fix to make everything flow together. So we're gonna zoom in just a bit and we see there's actually a moment of silence here. Easy way to fix that. If you're at the beginning or the end off a clip, all you have to do is just highlight with the two arrows and drag it to your desire position. Now, that's one way to do it. I'm gonna go ahead and hit Control Z to undo what I just did. I want to keep that solace the beginning of this clip, but I want to get rid of it on the second clip so that it can flow together. So I'm going to do is take the second clip and drag it to my desire position. You might need to drag the clip out onto the second track. Now that I have the clip drag to my desire position, you might need to drive the clip out to the second truck. So now I'm going to do that. I have the clip track to my desired position, gonna go ahead and dragon and just police and right back where I saw it. And now, before I move anything else together, gonna go ahead and zoom out just a bit and I'm gonna let this intro play over again. - So what we see here is that we need to zoom in even Mawr and fine tune what we're doing. So I'm going to zoom in a little more than I did last time. Dr. That clip to the second track, I'm going to zoom and just a bit more and we see that there's actually more of a space here , so I'm gonna go ahead and dragged us in even more. I'm going to zoom out and drag his clip back up, and this time instead of listen to the entire clip. Since I know what it should sound like, I'm just gonna play it three force way through the first clip. Somebody Paul is there and we see that it sounds much more fluent. So now what we're going should use, we're gonna go ahead and drag the rest of this clip over. You can click down here, or you could just drag the red marker and I'm gonna play it into the second clip to see if this flows together and we see here that it works very well. So now that's how you do Copy paste. So now they're sure you how to actually save and export your file. So in order to save your file, if you're gonna go up here and click file save Project as or control shift s I was gonna say this to my desktop foul name. We're going to name this coffee paste, er, General save as a M PDP, which is a mixed pat project format. Go ahead and click safe And there you go. It's saved. Now, if you're finished with your file and you will like toe export it, you're going to go up here to file and click export project as audiophile. That way this is important because if you had multiple clips on multiple tracks, such as if I drag this clip down here in this clip on the third track, if I just clicked export clip it would Onley export the first clip. So it's best to just get in the practice of clinic clicking export project. So I'm gonna go ahead and click export project, decide where you want to export in this case, I'm going to go ahead and let exports my desktop, and this will be the name of the file, and you can export it at any fall format you want. Just for the sake of entirety, we're going to export an MP three. Go ahead and click Export, and it'll mix down the file for you and get it ready for export. There you go, you're falls exported, and it should be in the destination this original. And here's my export file. You will also want to go ahead and click on the file and let it play through just to make sure way. So we see that sounds very good, and that's how you do. Copy paste er. Now go ahead and use the song Enduring that is provided in your files and go ahead and make a copy, paste or edit. Do it 5. Cut It Up Group Project: Now we're going to work on a group project called Cut It Up. Which is Ah, project similar to what you'll be doing. So I'm gonna go ahead and open the file, so I'm gonna Lou Clip. I'm just gonna pull the club for my desktop called Doubt by 21 pilots this fall will be provided for you in your files. So I'm gonna have a go ahead and click open. This is an M four, a file, but mixed pad reads a multitude of file formats. You go ahead and drag this up to the top. So we see we have our song here. It's good practice. If you're not familiar with the song, it is best to go ahead and give it a listen through. You do. I'm just Paul. Stay right there because what we're going to do is call, cut it up. We're actually going to similar to the coffee paste. Er, we're going to cut this project in different ways and manipulate the song and move things out of order. So I stopped it at right here. I'm actually going to go to the editing tab. I'm going to go ahead. Just have the editing tab open. I'm going to go ahead and click to place a marker because I want to cut a specific region. So I'm gonna go ahead and let this play through. I just put a marker at where Previous? Behind the marker is the area that I want to keep. Anything in between these markers will be what I want to cut out. And that's why I want to get out. I'm gonna go ahead and place a second marker. Now I'm going to do in order to be more precise, you could go ahead and zoom in and I'm going to try to focus on the parts that I want to cut out. So I want to cut out is right before the drum bass and then I want to write before the lyrics start. That's where I want to get out. So I'm going to see this. The drum may start before or after the marker and does the beat pick up and the lyrics start before after this marker. So I'm gonna go ahead and plate. So I see both of them happened after the marker. So I'm gonna do make sure that this isn't selected gonna go ahead and make sure your mouse is was present and you're going toe press left mouse button, and you gonna drag it over to the second marker and the Lego. Now, you see, I had this region highlighted, so I'm actually going to do you can do a multitude of things with this. What I'm actually going to do is I want to just clip out this region. So I want to cut this region and pasted in another section late. You can also trend. That's the invert of cutting or the region I just selected. So if I wanted to trim this just to show you, it would actually go ahead and trim everything outside of the highlighter region if I wanted to keep this part. And that's what that looks like. So I'm gonna go ahead and click control. See, Tom, do what I just did, and I want to go ahead and cut this region. Now I'm going to play through and listen to see if there's anything that I need to smooth out. Ramon image scared, and I see that sounds pretty. Okay, so now we're going to do is let it play a little longer until the next port that I want to cut maturity. Scared of my own feeling, scared certainty Fear might be the death of me Barely. It's do anxiety, don't know what's inside of me And I see this is the next part that I want to clip. So I'm going to go ahead. You can also measure by looking at the visuals of the music. So I know that the beat drops here and the drums will start here. So I'm going to go ahead and drag this to the end of where the lyrics start. I'm going to click Split a clip. I'm just gonna drag this down to make space. Now I'm going to click paste and I'm going to let this play to see if there's anything else I need to smooth out. I see there was a part that I cut incorrectly by a millisecond, so I'm gonna go ahead and click control Z twice to bring the clip back and 1/3 time I'm going to drag this to where I needed to be. I'm gonna let it play and then stop it. So that way I could get this more precise and I stopped right before the part. I want to get out. So I click split clip here, drive it down to make space and click paste and let this play. I'm gonna go ahead and drag this back into place to see if there's anything else I want to read it. And now I see that the drums played twice. So now what I'm going to do is go ahead and let this place I can drag and clip anything else I need. And I see this is why I want a clip doing this. Easiest. That'll placing a marker, I'm gonna go ahead and click, Click, split clip. And this is the part I want to delete some goto Go ahead and click delete on my keyboard or you go ahead and click it up here and I will ask you this. I'm gonna go ahead and click because I don't want to tell me every time I delete something . Now I'm gonna drag this into place and let it play through these two clips to see if there's anything that meets moving, dropping temperatures dropping. Now the last thing we're going to do in this video is we're going to go ahead and silence or region. The reason I want to silence is this little section right here. So I'm gonna go ahead and let it plea. Dropping temperature is dropping right before you start the next on part of the song. So now I'm going to do going to place a marker, go ahead and move this out of the way. I'm going to drag this to the beginning of the clip and it's highlighted and I'm going to click silence because I want this part to stay in what this does. It just mused that specific part of the clip and you cf made an accidental selection. So what you can do is just go to the bottom and click clear selection. If you don't do that and I just highlight something in the bottom, it'll just repeatedly play between what I have selected. Now let's let's play through this little section to see what it sounds like. See this ever stop. Now we see that solace ing did exactly what I wanted to do. Now this is the way that you can manipulate the clip. They're cutting, trimming and silencing. Now, piggybacking off of your copy, paste or project. I want you to take the same exact project you just worked on, and I want you to edit. Continue editing the song through cutting, trimming and solid sing. 6. Get Together Group Project: Now we're gonna work on a group. Get together. Project Which approach is a project you'll be doing on your own with the enduring song. This project we're going to learn merging and joining. So use the lock Lovelock down Kanye West cover clip that is provided to you. So I'm gonna go ahead and click Lou Clip. Now, the purpose of this project it's not to make a cohesive song is to show you the difference between merging and joining, which is right here in the editing tab. So I'm going to do is I'm just going to cut this clip and random places. So I'm just gonna split the clip here. I'm gonna split it here. I'm gonna split it here. Now, nothing has changed in the song I've just put into different clips. Well, I'm actually going to do now is rearrange some things, so I'm gonna drag the middle clip down and the second and the third and I'm gonna actually dragged the second clip to be the 3rd 1 and the third clip to be the 2nd 1 Now let's listen to how choppy it sounds. No way. This is how it sounds when you move things around without really manipulating anything. Now let's learn the difference between joining and merging clips. First we're gonna do joining. So I'm gonna click the first clip. I'm gonna hold down control and I'm going to click the 2nd 3rd and fourth clip I'm gonna click Join clips. Now you see what this does? It does absolutely nothing to change the sound clip. All it does is joining in tow one clip. So that way makes it easier if you have multiple clips on a track that you want to manipulate. So when you play, it's gonna sound the exact scene Ways control system over way. So you see, all it did was join the clip together. So I'm gonna go ahead and click Control Z to undo that. Now, when you merge a clip together in my still sound choppy. But let's see you copy and pasted a clip, but it doesn't sound quite together. What merge does it actually merge? The two clips together into one clip, but it adds fate points in order to make it sound more naturalistic. So let's go ahead and select all four. Remember holdout control and click all four clips I'm gonna go ahead and click Merge. Now you can see the points where actually cut the clip. So I'm gonna go ahead and click Play way, Way So you see, with this specific example, it didn't make it sound completely cohesive. But it did at FEI points a merger together. So if you do have a project that you're cutting and splitting and manipulating a different ways, if you want to make it sound more naturalistic and you actually have to calypso that sound pretty similar to each other, you can go ahead and click Bo clips and merge them together in order to make it sound more together. Now that you know how to merge and join and split cliffs, I want you to go ahead and piggybacking off of the previous project. I want you to manipulate and edit what you already have in the enduring songs, using splitting, merging and joining 7. The Manipulator Group Project: Okay. There's one more thing that you need to know for the basics of music editing and that's stretching and shrinking a clip which is right here. Now you stretching trigger clip is going to manipulate the sound of the clip. So let's see how that works. Gonna go to the home tab and click lewd clip and we'll be using It will rain if you're not familiar This is a song by Bruno Mars So if you're not familiar with the song you should go ahead and give the song a listen through Just familiarize yourself with the tempo and a tune and the rhythm of the song So I'm gonna go ahead and just play a little clip of it so that you can see how it sounds before and after we manipulated lives Muffy. Now so we see the songs as sounds very sad and has a constant tempo. So I'm gonna go appear to the edit tab. I'm gonna make sure the clip is selected. I'm going to click on stretch shrink clip. So first I'm going to actually stretch the clip. So if you manipulate the end time, it'll manipulate the new length Time the clip is currently at four minutes and 17 seconds. So I'm gonna go ahead and stretch this to six minutes. Exactly. You can check whether or not you want to keep the pitch constant if you do it to keep the exact rhythm of the song, the exact voice and the exact instruments. So I'm gonna go ahead and click, OK, just to get a load faster. If you wanna click to keep pitch Constant, it would take longer to actually stretch the clip. So I'm gonna go ahead and click play. We're gonna see how this clip sounds. As you can see, the club has been stretched to four minutes, six minutes Exactly. So let's go ahead and play and see how the sound changed. - Way stretched the clip without keeping the pitch constant. It actually manipulates the musicians voice. So now I'm gonna go ahead. I clicked. Control Z undo were just also up here. Now I'm gonna go ahead and stretch a clip to six minutes Exactly. But this time I'm going to click. Keep pitch Constant. This takes a little longer to actually stretch the clip. Sen on the Clippers stretch with the pitch constant so runners. He helped this sounds when it retains the musicians voice and used and instruments, please. So we see here that the musicians voice is retained A swell as the instruments on Lee. The tempo is slower. So I'm gonna go ahead and click control Z to undo and I'm going to select the clip again. But this time, instead of stretching it, I'm gonna shrink it to speed up the tempo. Now that you know how keeping the pitch constant sounds like I'm not gonna do that again. This time when I shrink the clip, I'm gonna shrink it two minutes and 30 seconds without retaining the pitch, I'm gonna click. OK, so now we see here the clip ist two minutes and 30 seconds long. So I'm gonna go ahead and play this So we see now speeding up the tempo The song sounds more upbeat and happy These air just two extra way She could manipulate the soundtrack that you're editing. So now you know how to stretch how to shrink Splitting, merging, joining, cutting, trimming, silencing, copy and pasting. It's another thing all the skills you know, all the basic things you need to know in order to start editing music, piggybacking off your previous project project. I want you to do the manipulated project in which you add on stretching and shrieking to the project that you have previously worked on. I also want you to make any other necessary edits or anything that you want to your project and posted in the class for everyone else to see. Thank you for taking this course. If you have any comments or suggestions, please post to my profile. Congratulations. You're now music editor.