This can be super handy for learning a song (especially fast songs). It starts to sound grainy if you slow it down too much, but you can still hear the notes well even at half speed. The program Transcribe is equipped to do this easier, faster, and better, but it costs $50. So here’s my tight-wad workaround:
- Download Audacity if you don’t already have it. It’s free and works on Windows, Mac, and Linux.
- Open the program and start a new project.
- You need a .wav file format to import to Audacity, so you will have to convert the MP3 (MPEG, whatever). This can be done though itunes by going to “Edit>Preferences>Import Settings” and choosing “WAV Encoder” (“OK”, “OK”, out). Then right click on the track in itunes and select “Create WAV Version”. This copies the file.
- In Audacity, click “Project>Import Audio”, then find a .wav file and open it. (If you came from itunes, it’s usually located in the same album folder as the normal MP3) The track now appears in Audacity.
- Select (click and drag) the area you’d like to slow down. You can also go “Edit>Select>All” if you want to select everything.
- Click “Effect>Change Tempo”. Then drag the slider to the left however much you want to slow the track down (you can also speed it up by dragging right) and click “OK”. Keep in mind that the slower you go the more the effect seems to bog down the computer while it is generating.
- If you’d like you can export the file back to MP3 by going “File>Export As MP3”.