Apple Music Basics

Learn the basics of starting with Apple Music. With Apple's streaming music service, you can access nearly all of Apple's music library at any time. You can add songs and albums to your music library and create playlists. You can also access the music offline for situations when you don't have an Internet connection.
Video Transcript / Captions
Closed captioning for this video is available on YouTube: Apple Music Basics.

Hi, this is Gary with On today's episode let's take a look at the basics of using Apple Music.

So if you haven't tried Apple Music yet, it is a free trial for three months. If you launch the new iTunes, notice here I'm using iTunes version, so anything that or newer is going to have Apple Music as part of it but it doesn't say Apple Music in big letters or anything up here. Instead you see several categories at the top. One is For You and another is called New. These will both go to Apple Music.

If you click on one and haven't signed up yet you will get a screen like this. You can go to Start Your free trial. You've got two options for a free trial. You've got the Individual free trial which is the standard and very similar to services like Spotify. You also have this family trial where you can actually have people, they have to be real family members, and they will link, kind of, to your account but they will have their own separate Apple Music stuff, stuff that they pick and the playlist they make will be all separate but this idea is that it is a discounted price. So $15 gets your family all Apple Music plan.

So you choose which one of these you want to do. Then you are going to sign in and continue with the sign up that will get you the free trial.

Once you are all squared away and have the free trial going you will go to iTunes and you will see, under My Music, you've got your music still. But if you go to For You or New you will see now content there. This is all content in Apple Music. Basically this is just some suggested things suggested playlists, albums based on what you already have or just based on what Apple wants to feature.

If you really want to dig down into Apple Music and just find anything by anybody Search is what you want to do.

So let's search for something. Let's search for say the Kinks. You can see that I've got two tabs here under Search. One is My Library that is going to show me stuff that I have in my library. Both things that I have had previously, like I bought in iTunes or ripped from CD's or bought from other services and imported into iTunes. It is also going to show me things that I've added from Apple Music. We'll talk about adding from Apple Music in a minute here.

But if I switch to Apple Music from My Library now it is going to give me a search of the entire Apple Music Library. I can select something like, for instance, let's click on the Kinks here. I can see here there is Top Results, there are songs, albums, there are playlists, music videos, artists.

Let's click on Artists here and I'll go to the artist page for the Kinks. This gives me information like the date it was released, top song, top albums, I've got biography over here with other information on the right side. I can dig down into any album I want. So for instance I can select this album here and dig down into that. I can see all the songs here.

Now at anytime I want I can play all this music. I can play the album. The play buttons were on the previous screens as well. I can play these individual songs just by clicking on them. I can just listen to whatever I want. There is no restriction on what I can or cannot listen to. I can listen to something again or just jump from one thing to another. I doesn't matter. I can listen to a Kinks song here and then I can go and do a search again for something else and just start playing that or add it to my next Up Next list in iTunes. So I can just listen to anything in the Apple Music library.

You can use these forward and backward buttons just like this is a web browser to go to and from things and then just continue to search for something else. You can just jump around. So it is basically like browsing the web except you are browsing the web of music and you can play anything that you want and just look into things that you might want to listen to and play whatever you want whenever you want.

Now say you find something that you like. So let's go into an album here and say I want to have this whole album available to me at anytime without searching. So there is a lot you can do. You can hit this plus button here is the main thing. That adds to your collection. Now if I go to My Music I will see here under Recently Added I've got the Rush album here added just as if I purchased it.

So there is a difference here between some of these. Some of these albums here I got because I actually did purchase them or ripped them or got them from another service and brought them into iTunes. Some of these things here I got because I simply added them from Apple Music. If I were to unsubscribe from Apple Music or not continue after the free trial these would disappear because they were all Apple Music added albums. But the stuff that I had obtained in other ways and actually owned, that stuff would stay.

Right now, the way My Music works it mixes all that stuff together. So now if I search for Rush under My Library I can see that that album shows up as well as an album I owned and ripped from a CD. It just puts it all together and I don't have to worry about where it comes from. I can just play that music.

Now one other thing that is fun to do with a streaming music service is create your playlists of various themes or times of the day or whatever. You want to use it for a road trip playlist, a wake up in the morning playlist, a work playlist, that kind of thing. You can do that with Apple Music pretty easily. Its got one weird thing. You have to add the songs to My Music first. So you have to have it in your music library even if from Apple Music, to be able to add it.

So, for instance, let's search for a song and I see I didn't have it in My Library but I have it, of course, its in Apple Music here. I'll select it. I can go now and I can't add, there isn't a way to add that to a playlist notice. But I can add it to My Music. Once I've added it to My Music, notice it takes a second or two, then suddenly I have new options including Add To and I can add it to a playlist or create a new playlist with it. So its got to be in My Music. You can see it appear here before I can have it in a playlist. I would love for us to be able to create a playlist without doing that but it is not really a huge inconvenience and of course chances are if I want it in a playlist then I don't mind having it also in My Music.

So you may think that one of the disadvantages of using Apple Music is that you can't listen to music when you are off line. That is not true. You can actually download some of these songs and have them on your Mac or your iOS device. So, for instance, for Summer Wind I can select this button, Download from iCloud, and it will add it now to my computer's files and it's still tied in. I still need to be subscribed to Apple Music. I won't have it when I let the subscription lapse. But if I'm disconnected from the internet, say I'm on an airplane, I can listen to this song here.

You have the same options on the iPhone and iPad for anything in Apple Music you can select to have it available offline. You can do that for a playlist. So you can create a playlist to listen to on an airplane, select the ability to have that all downloaded and then you've got all those songs even if you are not connected.

So there are some of the basics. There are just a few other things. There is so much to actually explore in Apple Music. For instance if you go to For You you will notice that these are actually playlists. They are called curated playlists. You can jump to them and see all the songs here on the playlist, just jump to an individual song or play the entire thing or shuffle it just to listen to various different songs. You can see the artist. You can actually also add this playlist to your music here and you can actually add the songs from the playlist into something. So you can combine these curated playlists into your own playlists.

So there is a lot of different cool things that you can do looking around in For You and New. Also if you are using Apple Radio you know you've got the main station Beats and then you have, this is with DJs. But then you have these other ones that are basically just mixes of songs, featured stations here, stations with genres. Then when you are listening to something there you can very easily add that song, if you are a subscriber to Apple Music. You can just add it to your collection or jump right to the artist inside of Apple Music and find out all their stuff, all their albums and songs and things like that.

Comments: 15 Responses to “Apple Music Basics”

    Brian Whitby
    4 years ago

    Since the latest iOS update I have lost the ability to shuffle all tracks of all CDs on my iphone6 in the new ‘Music’. No probs using my old iphone4 btw using an earlier iOS. Any ideas? Grateful thanks thanks.

      4 years ago

      Just go to My Music, switch from Artists to Songs. Play a song. Tap it at the bottom to bring the song and album art to full screen. Now tap the Shuffle button at the bottom to switch from playing all songs in order to playing all songs shuffled.
      Or, even easier: ask Siri to “Shuffle All Songs.”

    Adam Snyder
    4 years ago

    Thanks Gary, this is a good video to break down getting started with Apple Music. It helps people understand better as to what all of the Apple hype is about Apple Music.

    Noah Warren
    4 years ago

    Thanks Gary! My favorite thing on Apple Music right now is the “Activity Playlists”. It is quite extensive, ranging from studying, to working to “Getting it On”.

    4 years ago

    Thank you Gary! One query – on right side of the central window at the top, next to track details is Heart shaped icon to add the track being played to the list of favourites. Can you please advise how to retrieve the list of tracks marked favourite.

      4 years ago

      I have a smart playlist that shows all of my “Loved” songs. I forget whether this was automatically created for me, or I made it myself. If the latter, you can just make it yourself.

    4 years ago

    Thank you Gary, I had a lot of problems with Match, and ended up having to revert, as even apple care could not help me.. I see a new version has been released.. Have you heard whether this has solved the quirks?

      4 years ago

      Not sure. I’ve been using Match for years and haven’t had any issues, so I wouldn’t know if your specific issue has been fixed.

    Nancy Kruse
    4 years ago

    Gary, Not sure if you know the answer to this, but once the paid subscription starts and I download music to my computer for several months; and then stop the paid subscription, will the music I downloaded during the paid subscription period be removed from my computer?

      4 years ago

      Yes. Think of it like this: You pay for a monthly subscription to access all of the music on Apple Music. If you stop the subscription, you can’t access that music anymore. It is like if you pay for a membership at a gym, and then you stop the membership, you can’t use the gym anymore.

    4 years ago

    In reading Nancy’s question, I think it is important to mention that any existing local tracks that she has ripped and owns, that once Apple Music matches those songs, they will also disappear if she discontinues Apple Music. Thus it’s important to keep a backup of any of her locally ripped music, so if she doesn’t choose to continue that she will not have to rip them all over again. According to Apple, if she had Match, she would not lose those songs when she discontinues Apple Music.

      4 years ago

      I don’t think so. Hard to test, but that should only happen if she rips, matches them using iTunes Match, them and then deletes them from her local drive relying only on iTunes Match and Apple Music to play those songs, not a local copy.

    Jeffrey Bendler
    4 years ago

    Gary, how do I change from a family membership to an individual subscriber?

      4 years ago

      In iTunes on the Mac, choose Store, View Account. Under Settings, choose Subscriptions. Then choose Apple Music.

        Jeffrey Bendler
        4 years ago


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