Recording Your First Podcast with Audacity | Emilia Gardner | Skillshare

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Recording Your First Podcast with Audacity

teacher avatar Emilia Gardner, Learning every day!

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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

    • 1.

      Class Introduction


    • 2.

      About Your Instructor


    • 3.

      Where to get Audacity


    • 4.

      Audacity Walkthrough


    • 5.

      Adding a new Track


    • 6.

      Working With Your Track


    • 7.

      Get Rid of the Bad Stuff


    • 8.

      Let's Record More


    • 9.

      Whoops Forgot Something


    • 10.

      Add Some Music


    • 11.

      Export to Upload


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About This Class

Starting a podcast does not have to be that hard. The actual recording and technology is much, much easier than it sounds. If you have never recorded a podcast, or done any voice over work, it sounds like a complicated task. (That's how I felt in the beginning anyway). But after starting my own podcast, I found that it is not quite so bad. 

In this class, I've broken down the recording process in Audacity (a free and easy to learn software) so that anyone who wants to start a podcast but feels intimidated by the recording process can get started.

Yes, you need a decent microphone, but beyond that, you don't need to spend a lot of money on computers, cords, arms, or other devices to get the job done. 

I have plans to put together more advanced Audacity tutorials and when they are done I will link them here.

Meet Your Teacher

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Emilia Gardner

Learning every day!



My name is Emilia.

I'm not an expert. I'm learning every day, just like you. I'm here because I am passionate about: "Learn, Do, Teach." I truly believe that teaching is the best way to master a skill or concept. I create content around the topics that I am implementing for myself.



I am obsessed with building passive income streams. When my children arrived, my dreams of the corner office with the view changed. Now I dream of having complete control over my days so that I can be where I am needed, when I am needed. No more trading time for money. My classes focus heavily upon helping others build the same skills that I have learned (and earned) since making my career pivot. 

One of my goals here at Ski... See full profile

Level: Beginner

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1. Class Introduction: hello and welcome. This course is called recording your first podcast with audacity. Now, what we're going to cover today is not the entire process beginning to end of formulating your podcast and getting ready with the content. This is just the actual technological process of using audacity to record the podcast that you had planned. I want to be clear. This is a beginners tutorial. And this is for folks who are looking for a free and fairly easy way to get their podcasts up and running and out there. I hope to have more advanced audacity tutorials posted in the near future. Here's what we're going to cover. First, I'm going to show you where you can download audacity. Next, we're going to do a quick walk through just to show you where the important things air at. Then we will get to the basics of adding a new track so that you can actually start recording your sound, your speaking words, your podcast. We'll talk about how to clean up what you've recorded, how to record a little more in the event that you weren't quite done or when you go back and listen to it and you realized that you missed something and finally will wrap up with how to add some music or some other sound effects to podcast to make it sound a little more professional. And then we'll wrap it up with exporting it so you can take it an uploaded on whatever podcast platform you are using, be it bus proud or anchor, or wherever. 2. About Your Instructor: really quickly, just a little bit about myself. My name is Amelia. I used to be a professional. I used to work in a corporate office, and now I spend most of my free time when I'm not taking care of my kids working on building income streams through the Internet. I have a modest YouTube general, a growing podcast I own and operate. Several websites have an email newsletter, and I've got lots of different projects in progress. If you want to know more about me, check out the description or go to my teacher by him. 3. Where to get Audacity: all right, So the tool, the software, the product that we are going to use to record your very first podcast is called audacity. Now there are lots of other options to use in order to create a podcast. The reason that I like audacity for beginners, especially when I was a beginner, is that audacity is easy to use, and it is also free. And unlike many Freemium options, there are no ads everywhere with these requests that you pay money to upgrade to remove the ads. There are just no ads in this thing. Another thing I liked about audacity is that it was something that I could download onto my computer and use. Even if I was away from the Internet or my wife, I wasn't working. I didn't have to be connected to the Internet to be working and recording on editing my podcast. Audacity is an open source software, which means if you search audacity and or to download audacity on the Internet, you might find lots of different places to download. And this could be concerning because you never really necessarily know what you get. You want to make sure when you download software from the Internet that you get the right version and you don't get one that has malware, and I recommend that you go to audacity team dot org's to get your download. 4. Audacity Walkthrough: now, once you have downloaded audacity and you install it and then you launch it when you double click on that icon, this is what you will see. This is what will open up. And if you've never worked with a program like this, it can see maybe technical or perhaps overwhelming, especially since nowadays, when you're on most platforms, you'll see tons of brightly colored boxes and and wizards and things toe lead you through. But this is a very simple but effective piece of software. There's not a lot of bells and whistles, but it gets the job done. So before we start recording any tracks, I want to point out a few things in this strip. Here on the top, you will find many of the tools that you will use while recording your podcast. The obvious ones thes should be familiar. The pause play stopped for back and then the record button. Here in this box, if you follow my point on, you will see something that looks like a cursor. It is the I. This is the tool that I use the most, and you'll be very confused if you are selected any of these other items when you are trying to work on your podcast. Next, I would ask you to come over here and look at this piece that looks like a microphone, and it says Click to start monitoring. I'm going to click it and this is how you can tell whether or not your microphone is functioning and what sort of levels you are getting. You want to look here to see whether or not your microphone is connected and whether you are recording in stereo or in mono. In most cases, when you're recording a podcast, that's just you. Talking mono is fine. And then, if you are recording while wearing headphones, which can be recommended depending upon what it is that you're recording and how careful you want to be about that sound, you just want to make sure that your headphones are connected and I would wear them while you're speaking so that you can actually tell whether or not the sound is coming through as it should 5. Adding a new Track: Now let's record something. Let's start building the audio for this podcast to start a new track. You can do this one of two ways. One is you can come up here to tracks and click, add new and then pick the type of track. Or you can simply hit the record button and you should be able to. Then just right. Then start recording. And you can see right now that by the bumps and squiggles that my voice is being recorded and I'm going to stop that and we'll go back and plate and see how well that actually comes through in the recording, right? 6. Working With Your Track: in this module. We're going to cover just a bit about what it takes and how you can sort of move around this audio track that you have recorded as we talked about before. You can use these buttons appear on the left to play the track deposit and to stop it and also to record. If you would like to listen to this track, starting at a specific spotless say, at five seconds, you can use the I the selection tool and click on the track here not necessarily in the purple, but down here low, not appear in any of these things. They're not on the numbers but right here and then either pressed the play button. Or, if you go again to the five seconds you can also hit the space bar to start. And then again to stop a function that I used frequently is quick play, and if you want to enable or disable quickly, we'll need to do is just simply right. Click here on this strip and we'll give you the option to disable or enable quick play. What I like about it is that wherever you have the point of wherever this green triangle is when you click that spot, it automatically starts to play the only thing that is obnoxious about quick plays. You may be looking to select a specific part of your track like this. I am using the selection tool, and I'm just clicking and dragging. But if you do it up here in the like this measuring tape area and you try to select something, it will automatically start to play. And it's something just to be aware of its not the end of the world. But again, it can be annoying, as you are figuring out and learning how to manipulate and work your way around your audio track. 7. Get Rid of the Bad Stuff: Now, as you're listening to the track that you just recorded, you may find that there are things that you want to remove. You may want to remove the sound of your intake of breath. Or perhaps you waited and you didn't have anything to say for a long time, and you want to go and remove those what you want to do. And it's really simple is just used the tool that looks like the I the selection tool and then not clicking in here because of you. Click in there. It will start the playback of the audio, but instead calm down into the area where it is. You want to get rid of something and then just drag the I the selection tool, and you can either come up and hit cut, or you can drag and select and hit the delete button or the backspace button on your keyboard, and it will take care of that for you, just like this 8. Let's Record More: Now let's say you are struggling with knowing what to say or how to say it. What you can actually do is pretty easily stop recording and then continue right where you left off. For example, if you're looking here at this, a little piece of sound that we recorded for the purposes of this tutorial. Once I've gotten to the end of that, basically all I have to do is hit the record button again and it should pick up right where I left off, see what he means. So instead of beginning to record here on the inside of this recording, regardless of where the pointer is, the record button will have you pick up where you left off. 9. Whoops Forgot Something: So you're listening to the track that you just recorded and you realized that you forgot something. So how do you go ahead and go in and add in new sound in the middle of something you have already recorded? And this one is one. I think that stumps, people who struggle with this talk a little bit because is not as obvious as just going up and putting your cursor where you want to go and then clicking the record button. And I'm gonna show you what will happen when you do that. Like, let's say that right here between seconds three and four. This is where I forgot to put something important. So I go and I put the cursor there. I feel like I've got that spot and I go to hit record and it starts recording at the end, as I showed you before. So just how do you do this? So the first thing that I want to do is to record the piece that is missing and will do that by first muting this track the original track, because when you are recording a new track, you don't want this to be playing in the background. You don't want to be recorded again. You don't want to have any eco going on whatsoever. So we have muted this track and you can see that it is muted because instead of being purple, the little sound marks are now brownish grey. Then we will go and add a new track. And for us, we're adding a mono track and you can tell that it is ready to go because it is there in front of you and then we will simply go ahead and record. So now I'm recording Yadi Yadi, yada, yada, yada. Once I have recorded it, I imagine there are a couple of ways to get this done. This is just the way that I do it. And as you get used to audacity and you do this more, you may find a more director of potentially a better way to do it. But this works for me. So I know that the only part that clip that I want is this purple part. So I will go ahead and select the part that I don't want and I'm going to go ahead and delete whatever is on necessary now that I have done that. I'm going to come up here and figure out where it is that this clip needs to go. I wanted to go right here between seconds three and four. So I'm going to go ahead and use the selection tool to put my spot my marker right there and I'm going to hit control I because I want to split that you can also make this split happen by coming up to edit and going down to clip boundaries and then click split. Once I have done that, I will be able to move these tracks instead of using the selection tool the I. I'm going to use this tool. It's called the Time shift tool, and you could hit at five. I never do. I just go up here and click it, but when you dio it will give you the ability to move the pieces. I will use the time shift tool and move that piece out, and then I will go down and just grab this and move this one into place and then shift everything back so that it fits nice and neat. 10. Add Some Music: So now you have your sound. You have your podcast, the speaking part of your podcast. Lay down and you're ready to try and make it just a little bit better. You've definitely listen toe other podcasts. And you noticed how additional sound such as music or sound effects, how they can really add to the prefer professional and high quality sound of a podcast. And you say, OK, well, music. How do I add music? And it seems like it should be more difficult than it is, but it is really not. Honestly, the hardest part about adding music to a podcast is figuring out what music toe add. People get in trouble all the time, but just going out on the Internet and just grabbing some music without confirming whether or not they have the authority or power to use it, potentially setting them up or copyright issues or even a lawsuit. If you're looking for music, go to a place that advertises free music or purchase something to use or even make your own . Once you have decided on a track, adding it to your podcast is pretty darn easy. All you have to do is go up to file, click on it and select import and then select audio wants you click Audio. It will give you a chance to go into your computer or device and select that file that music that you have previously downloaded. Select your music track and it will show up right here without you having to do anything else so you can add a new track if you want to. But you don't have to, because once you import the track into this project that you're working on, it will show up here automatically. Now what you see here on the screen is you see two lines of sound, and this shows us that this track was recorded in stereo. Not Imano. But as faras editing goes, you don't necessarily have to do anything with them separately because they are grouped, unless you separate the tracks to edit them on your own. So what does this one sound like? This is apparently a beat, and we dont hear the speaking because you can see appear that this one is still set on mute . So let's hear what they sound like together. So I will a Knute them both the drumming sound. The beat sound is just about as loud as my speaking voice, and that's a problem for the podcast. So what we'll need to do is to adjust the levels of both the music and my speaking voice. You can adjust the levels here on the left and you can see the pointer here. There's the negative and the positive, and I can simply adjust the gain and make it negative so that the sound of the background music is not quite so long. I'm gonna hit, play and tested out, see what it sounds like again, And I noticed still that the beat is fairly loud, and so what I can do is either turn that down some more, or I can turn up the sound of my own boys so that it is not drowned out by the music. This is something that you'll just have to continue to play around with and listen to. And this is when headphones can be really handy, because you can really hear how it is. This product is going to sound when you end up finishing it and a lot of podcasts you will hear the music and then you will slowly here it fade out. And here's how you do that in audacity. Use the selection tool to select the area of the sound that you want to fade out. Then you will come up to effect and just scroll down to fade out and click it, and then it will apply that to your track. 11. Export to Upload : All right, So now your file, your podcast, your project is as good as it is going to get, and you are ready to take it off of audacity and take this project and go and upload it on your podcast platform. Whether you're uploading it directly to your website or you're using Bus Sprout or some other podcast provider, you need to get it out of audacity so that you can take it over there and uploaded. So go to file and then click Export. You will be given a choice to export it as an MP three away file or some other kind of file , and you'll also be given a chance to edit in a just how the quality of the file and the rest as you exported. Now, if you're not sure what kind of file to export it as what I would recommend you do is go to anchor or go to buzz sprout or go to your podcasting platform and check out their support articles or their FAA cues. Because usually this information is in there. They will tell you the best format for you to bring your files over to them to upload and then once you select, it will give you a chance to name it and save it, and then you will be done.