Simple! How to cut audio in Audacity (&paste too!)

Cutting audio is an extremely useful skill to know, very often you have a piece of audio that you want to cut from one side of the recording and paste to another part, here’s how to do it.

How to cut Audio in Audacity

Step 1: Open your file

First things first, in case you haven’t done so, open your file by going to file>open or using the keyboard shortcut ctrl+o (cmd+o on MAC)

Step 2: Select the selection tool

This is probably optional, but if you have played around with other tools, make sure the selection tool is selected in the top menu (keyboard shortcut F1),

Step 3: Select the part you want to cut

In order to cut, after you have opened your audio file, simply go the part you want to cut and right click. Then while still click drag your mouse all the way to the end of the audio you want cut. This will make a selection like the one below. The selection will have a different color than the original recording.

Step 4: Cut the selection

Then it is time to cut, select edit>cut or use the keyboard shortcut ctrl+x (cmd+x on Mac). Once you do that, the selection will disapear from view, but behind the scenes it is loaded in memory. Here’s a before and after:

How to Paste Audio in Audacity

Now it’s time to paste. Here’s how to do it:

Step 1: Select the selection tool

Once again, make sure the selection tool is active by pressing F1 or clicking on it’s icon on the top menu.

Step 2: Click where you want the audio pasted

Once that is done, in your timeline click where you want your audio (that is loaded in memory) pasted.

In the example above, the audio will be pasted at the 2:10 mark.

Step 4: Paste the section in

simply click on edit>paste or use the keyboard shortcut ctrl+v (or cmd+v on Mac). The audio section that was loaded in memory will then be pasted there. Here’s my added selection, notice it’s at the 2:10 mark:

How to cut audio in Audacity addendum

You will need to be careful when you cut, you need to be careful, because there is only one slot for the cut audio in memory. That means if you start with once selection and cut it, and then go and make another selection and then cut… only the second selection will be pasted, and the first selection will be lost.

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