How to Delete Music on an iPod

by Aaron Parson ; Updated February 10, 2017

When you go to download the latest release from your favorite band and find your iPod doesn't have enough space, delete some old songs to squeeze in the new tracks. If you have an iPod Touch with iOS 7 or 8, you can remove music right from the Music app, even while out of the house, without affecting the files back on your computer. For other iPod devices or older models of iPod Touch, deselect the categories you won't want anymore in iTunes, or delete the songs entirely to remove them from both the iPod and your computer.

Delete on IOS 7 or 8

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Open the "Music" app on your iPod's home screen.

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Switch to the "Albums," "Artists" or "Songs" tab. Deleting a playlist -- or deleting a song within a playlist -- does not actually remove music from your iPod.

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Swipe from right to left along the album, artist or song you want to remove and then tap "Delete." Deleting music frees up space on your iPod, but won't erase the music from iTunes on your computer.

Delete in ITunes 12

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Right-click any song on the "My Music" tab and choose "Delete" to completely erase the song from iTunes and from your iPod the next time you sync it. Do not perform this step or the next if you want to only remove the song from your iPod.

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Switch to the "Albums" tab, right-click an album and choose "Delete" to remove an entire album from both your computer and your iPod.

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Plug in your iPod and click the iPod icon to reach its Settings page.

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Open the "Music" tab and make sure "Selected Playlists, Artists, Albums and Genres" is selected. Uncheck the items in each category you want to remove and then click "Apply." This method deletes the music from your iPod without removing it from iTunes on your computer.

Tip

  • When selecting albums, artists, genres and playlists to sync, iTunes syncs all songs that belong to any of the checked boxes. For example, if you check the genre box for "Classical" music, your iPod loads all your classical songs, even if you leave individual classical albums unchecked.

    If you don't choose to sync a playlist in iTunes, that playlist won't show up on your iPod, even if all the songs in the list are selected for syncing in the albums, artists or genre categories.

    You can re-download any music you bought from iTunes without an additional charge in the "Purchased" tab in the iTunes Store app or by clicking "Purchased" on the front page of the iTunes Store on your computer.

Tip

  • If you delete songs that you didn't buy on the iTunes Store from both iTunes and your iPod, you permanently lose access to the songs unless you have them saved somewhere else. If you're unsure, remove music only from the iPod and leave the files in iTunes as a backup.

About the Author

Aaron Parson has been writing about electronics, software and games since 2006, contributing to several technology websites and working with NewsHour Productions. Parson holds a Bachelor of Arts from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera Image courtesy of Apple