Music app

Farewell iTunes: How to use the Music app in macOS Catalina

iTunes has long been needed to sync and manage music and other content between your computer and iOS devices. But what started out as simple software gradually grew into a big, bloated, buggy application that struggled with too many features for its own good.

For macOS Catalina, Apple finally got the message and ditched iTunes in favor of smaller, dedicated apps for your music, podcasts, TV shows, movies, and audiobooks. (It stays in Windows.)

The good news is that you can use the Music app with existing albums, songs, and playlists, and music you’ve added or purchased from iTunes along with any CDs you’ve ripped will also take the plunge. .

Most, but not all, menu commands are similar between iTunes and the Music app. The main difference is in the timing of the music. To manually sync your music and other content, you now go through Finder instead of iTunes. Here’s what else you need to know.

Configure the music app

The Music app is easy to locate because it sports the familiar iTunes icon. The first time you open it, you will see a Welcome to Apple Music message. To find out more, click on the “Take a guided tour” link. Otherwise, click the button to start listening. If you are not yet signed in, click on the Account menu and select Sign In. Then sign in with your Apple ID and password.

See albums and artists

See albums and artists

Your existing music library should then appear. You can switch between different categories of your music, including artists, albums, songs, and video clips. Click Albums to view individual albums from different artists. Choose Artists to see a list of artists in the middle pane. Selecting a specific artist displays each album on the right.

View songs and video clips

View songs and video clips

The Songs view displays each song by artist, although you can click a different heading, such as Name, Time, or Genre, to sort the list differently. If there were videos included in one of your albums, click the Music Videos category to view them. To view the albums you just added, click the Recently Added category.

Play music

Play music

As with iTunes, click the Play button on an album to play it starting with the first track. Otherwise, click on the album to open it, then click on a specific song to play it. You can then pause, resume, skip to next track, go back to previous track, shuffle tracks, repeat tracks, adjust volume, and stream music to another device using AirPlay.

ITunes store

ITunes store

To find, buy and download new music, click on the entry for iTunes Store. You can then browse through the selections. Press the price button for an album you want to buy.

Apple Music integration

Apple Music integration

If you have an Apple Music subscription, you can listen to music by selecting one of the entries under Apple Music: For you, Browse, and Radio. If you’re not a subscriber, you can still listen to Apple’s Beats 1 and other radio stations.

Search in the app

Search in the app

Find music in your Library, the iTunes Store, or Apple Music. Type the name of an artist, song, genre, or other name into the search field in the left pane. Then tap Apple Music, Your Library, or iTunes Store at the top right to see the filtered results.

Music app menu commands

Music app menu commands

Most of the menu commands in the Music app are similar to those in iTunes. Right click on an album or song to bring up the context menu where you can add the album or song to a playlist, play and shuffle the album, get album info to see its details and add or change album art, like or dislike the album, view it in the iTunes Store, get album artwork, or delete the album.

Import music

Import music

As with iTunes, the Music app lets you import a song or album into your existing library. Click on File> Import, then navigate to the folder containing the music you want to import. You can select multiple songs and albums to import all at once and then click the Open button. Return to the Music app and these albums and songs appear in your library.

Change Music app settings

Change Music app settings

Finally, you can view and adjust some settings and preferences of the Music app just like you would with iTunes. Click on the Music menu and select Preferences. On the General tab, you can sync your library, turn on automatic downloads, and view certain items. The Sync Library option only appears if you subscribe to Apple Music and will allow you to access your entire iCloud Music Library on all of your devices.

Proofreading

Proofreading

In the Playback section, you can adjust the quality and sound of music and music videos.

Files

Files

Restrictions

Restrictions

In the Restrictions section, you can disable or restrict certain content.

Advanced

Advanced

And in the Advanced section, you can choose to automatically update album art, keep mini-player on top of other windows, and keep video playback on top of other windows.

How to Discover New Music on Spotify and Apple Music

How to Discover New Music on Spotify and Apple Music

Finding new tracks takes time, but the best music streaming services offer a number of ways to inject new artists and songs into your daily routine.

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