How to Build your first track
Start a project
Download GarageBand for free from the Mac App Store, or open it from your Mac’s Applications folder if it came preinstalled. In the app’s opening window you’ll see a number of project templates to choose from.
Add a track
Double-click on the Empty Project option to start a brand new project. Next, you are prompted to set the type of your first track. For this example, choose Software Instrument by selecting that option, then click Create.
FIND A LOOP
You’ll probably want to start with some kind of a beat, so open the loops library by clicking the Apple Loops button at the top right of the window. To filter the list of loops, click the Loop Pack pop-up and pick a category.
ADD TO PROJECT
Click a loop to hear it. To place a loop into a project, drag it from the library and drop it on a track in the centre. Its tempo will adjust to match the project. To change the project’s tempo, double-click the tempo box at the top.
Make the loop longer
Drag the right-hand edge of the loop to the right to add more copies of the loop. Then find another loop, say a bass or guitar, and drag that to a new track, extending it to cover as many bars as you like, too.
Add a real recording
To add a real recording, choose Track > New Track, select the option to record using a microphone, and click Create. Connect some headphones and a good USB mic. With this track selected, press Record in the toolbar.
Mix the song
Press the Smart Controls button near the top left of the window to see controls for the effects and instruments in the selected track. Use the level faders on a track to change its volume and refine the mix of your tracks.
Add an instrument
Now choose the instrument track – we’ve picked an electric piano, but you can use any you like from the library on the left. Pick Window > Show Musical Typing to see how to play the instrument using your Mac’s keyboard.
Build more parts
Keep adding loops, recordings, and instrument parts until you are happy. The clips on the timeline can be cut, moved, or deleted to help build your arrangement. Select a track then a new instrument to try different sounds.
Share or export
When you’re finished, choose an item from the Share menu. You can send your music to iTunes, SoundCloud, email or AirDrop it, or export a file. Export as high quality AAC for a smaller file, or AIFF for an uncompressed file.