How to Record Music on Your Phone

by Amanda Gronot

In the spring of 2009, an indie-pop band called The 88 recorded a hit entitled "Love is the Thing" on an iPhone. Since then, many musicians have been curious about smar tphone applications for their own work. You may also want to record music from a friend's live show, or you may want to convert a song you hear into a ring tone. You can record music on any cell phone with a "Record" button, but the resources for music recording on smart phones are much more sophisticated.


Select "Voice Memo" or "Voice Record" on your phone's home page. Press "Record" and play. Very old cell phones will not have this button, but some modern non-smart phones have this capability, and all smart phones do. The sound quality will not be very good, even on a smart phone.


Download an application from the App Store, like FourTrack, a multitrack audio recorder; BeatMaker, a mini recording studio that lets you sync and share your music; or ProTrack, which allows you to record stereo audio directly to your smart phone. These apps cost between $.99 and $9.99, as of early 2011.


Hook up an external microphone to your phone if you will be recording at a loud volume. The phone's own microphone is fine for softer recordings. If you use ProTrack, you can use two microphones, panning left and right. You can also set up a microphone mixer and plug this into your phone through a microphone amp.


Set up the microphone and smart phone in the place you want to record. Press "Record" and play a little bit of your song to test the sound, making sure that you (or your band) is the correct distance from the source.


Press "Record" and start the music.


About the Author

In 2008 Amanda Gronot began her professional career as a writer for a research company. She helped ghostwrite a book for a prominent CEO and has had essays and translations published in the prestigious classics journal "Helicon." Gronot graduated with a four-year Master of Arts/Bachelor of Arts in classics from Yale University.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera cell phone image by Alexey Klementiev from