How to recover your recording if GarageBand crashes

Did the GarageBand app crash midway while you were recording? In this tutorial, we will show you how to recover your recording if GarageBand has crashed on your Mac.

Mac's GarageBand logo on a solid yellow background

It’s the most helpless feeling in the world of recording. You’re halfway through—or worse, wrapping up—an epic guitar solo or an entertaining two-hour-long podcast, and you notice GarageBand isn’t responding. The infamous beach ball is spinning, and it looks like your genius may be gone forever.

Luckily, there is a way to recoup this seemingly lost audio, even if your project appears empty. Following a scare on Monday when lightning made my power flicker in the final minutes of our Let’s Talk iOS recording, I came across this cool tip for recovering my GarageBand file that was created before the software crashed.

How to recover a GarageBand recording if it crashes

1) The first thing you need to do is locate the GarageBand file you were recording in when the app crashed. This should be fairly easy, as GarageBand forces you to pick a save destination when starting a new project, but if you can’t find it, try doing a search for ‘.band‘ in Finder.

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2) Once you’ve found the file, right-click on it and select Show Package Contents. This should take you to a directory, which houses a variety of folders. Find the one labeled Media and open it.

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3) Inside the Media folder, you should see a .aif file (if you have multiple .aif files, find the largest one). This is your recording. Simply open GarageBand and drag and drop the file into your project. And that’s all there is to it! Just to be sure, though, you’ll probably want to press Play to verify you have the correct audio.


This tip worked for me in restoring my recording! It’s also worth noting that my MacBook did not turn off between GarageBand crashing and me locating the file. The brief power outage just caused GarageBand to freeze.

Did this tip work for you? Feel free to tell us about your experience or ask questions in the comments below!

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