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I am looking for free (hopefully) open source software that will allow me to remove (or replace/mute) a few choice words in some music I own. (I wish the artist would release a radio edit version of this particular song!)

I would like to just remove the words themselves without destroying the music. I understand that this is not easy and I do not expect it to automatically scan the music and figure it out by itself.

Pretend I don't like the word "rose" in my music. If the lyrics were "Every rose has it's thorn" I would like to be able to manually scroll to the proper location in the song, see a graphical representation of the audio spectrum, and cut the vocals only for the time while the singer is singing "rose". The result would be "Every __ has it's thorn" without affecting the original timing adversely.

I guess I'm looking for powerful open-source song editing software. Ideally, it would be able to handle MP3 format. I'm looking to do this with Windows 7 64 bit, but am not averse to Linux.

  • There is free software that might be able to do this with a little rigging, what platform (operating system / architecture) are you using? – Tim Post Feb 5 '14 at 5:55
  • @TimPost Good call. I updated the question include OS. Win7 64 bit preferred, but Linux would do just fine. – kmort Feb 5 '14 at 5:57
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Audacity is Free, Multi-platform, (Windows, Mac and Linux), and has all that you asked for but there are lots of options for this sort of work - you can easily mute or beep a section that you have selected.

If the singer is centre recorded without echo then the remove vocals plug in tool may be a big help, I am not sure if it will only process the selected section or all of the track but even if it is all of the track you could try removing it from a copy adding the copy as two new tracks and then cross mixing at the appropriate points.

You may even consider using the Auto-Duck by connecting a microphone, playing the track and recording a track of you speaking over the "offending" sections and then using that as a control track.

File types supported: WAV, AIFF, FLAC, MP2, MP3 or Ogg Vorbis sound files. With ffmpeg you can also import and export AC3, M4A/M4R (AAC) and WMA and the soundtrack from Video files.

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