iMovie - Adding Background Music to Your Project

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Adding Background Music to Your Project

You can enliven your movie with a musical score. If you have songs in your iTunes
library, you can drag one in to accompany your video; if not, try using one of the
iLife jingles.

To add background music to your iMovie project:


Choose Window > “Music and Sound Effects,” or click the “Music and Sound Effects”
button in the iMovie toolbar.


In the “Music and Sound Effects” pane, click iTunes to see all the music in your
iTunes library, or click the Sound Effects folder to find background music that best fits
your movie.

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Chapter 2

Learn iMovie


You can preview any sound file by double-clicking it.


Select a music file and drag it to the project background, being careful to avoid
dragging it onto any clip.

A green background music icon appears behind the video clips, starting at the
beginning and continuing for the duration of the song or the video, whichever ends
first. If the music extends beyond the video, a music indicator appears at the end of the
video. The music automatically fades out at the end of the video.


If you want to adjust the startpoint and endpoint of the background music, click the
green background, and then choose Edit > Trim Music.

The music trimmer opens, displaying only the background music clip. Inside the music
clip is a waveform; wherever the waveform is pink, there is accompanying video, which
you can see in the viewer by skimming over the music clip. The black waveform
indicates the part of the music clip that extends beyond the startpoint or endpoint of
the video. If you add more clips to make your video longer, the background music
automatically covers the additional video.

Background music

Music indicator

Handle for music

Handle for video


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Chapter 2

Learn iMovie


To set the point in the music where the video begins playing (the video startpoint),
drag the first selection handle.

As you drag the video startpoint handle, the pink waveform shifts within the music clip
and the corresponding video plays in the viewer, indicating the new position of the
video startpoint.


To set the point in the video where the music ends (the music endpoint), drag the
second selection handle.

As you drag the music endpoint handle, the corresponding video plays in the viewer to
help you find the endpoint you like.


To preview your work, click the Play button in the trimmer, and when you like the way
it plays, click Done.

To learn about more ways to arrange and work with audio in iMovie, including adding
and arranging multiple background music clips or sound effects, extracting audio clips
from your video, and fading audio in and out, see the topics in iMovie Help under
“Enhancing Audio” (in the section called “Creating a Video Project”).

To close the “Music and Sound Effects” pane:


Click the “Music and Sound Effects” button in the iMovie toolbar.

To delete background music:


Click behind the video clips to select the music, and then press the Delete key.

You’ve now successfully created a simple video slideshow that you can share with
friends and family. If you want, you can edit it further, following the instructions in the
sections below.