The Comprehensive Guide to Keyboard Shortcuts in Garageband

To make your life easier, Garageband has come up with many keyboard shortcuts that keep you from having to use your mouse to open menus for every single thing. In fact, memorizing shortcuts will save you tons of time and energy when you record, track, edit, mix, and master your Garageband projects.

Another great way to save time and energy is to use the Logic Remote, which I should’ve started using ages ago. You can download that in the App Store on your iOS device. Let’s dive into a comprehensive list of practically every keyboard shortcut, however, we’ll first look at some of the most common keyboard shortcuts for Garageband:

Command + X = Cut 
Command + C = Copy
Command + V = Paste 
Command A – Select All 
Option + Command + N = Create a new track 
Option + Command = A Create a new audio track 
Option + Command + S = Create a new software instrument track 

There are all kinds of shortcuts and keyboard key combinations for Garageband – what you just saw here is only a few. For whatever reason, Apple hasn’t released a full list (or even a manual for that matter). Some shortcuts are shown in Garageband’s toolbar where you can manually implement certain actions, but many of them aren’t there, in fact, most of them are not. Luckily for you, the list below has nearly every keyboard shortcut for Garageband and I also have a table of contents to quickly get you where you need to be.

by the way, I have a list of all the best products for music production on my recommended products page, including the best deals, coupon codes, and bundles, that way you don’t miss out (you’d be surprised what kind of deals are always going on).

Table of Contents
Editing Shortcuts 
Arrangement Shortcuts 
Playhead Arrow Shortcuts / Navigation 
Recording and Playback  
Master Volume Shortcuts  
Dynamics and Volume Shortcuts
How Do I Create A Shortcut in GarageBand? 
How Do I Bring Up Keyboard Controls in GarageBand?
How Do You Zoom in On GarageBand? 
How Do You Snap To the Grid in GarageBand? 
Important Things to Note About Keyboard Shortcuts
Gear Mentioned

Every GarageBand Keyboard Shortcut Imaginable 

Editing Shortcuts 

Command + Shift + ? (Question Mark) = GarageBand Help 

Command + Shift + ? Quick Help - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • Using the (Command + Shift + ?) shortcut will bring up the help menu so you can learn about functions, windows, and other controls in GarageBand without ever having to leave the application. 

Quick Tip:

If your question isn’t supported in Quick Help, try the User’s Guide here on Apple’s website.

Note: A second shortcut for GarageBand Help is Shift + Backslash (/)

Command + H = Hide GarageBand 

Command + H Hide Garageband - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • With Garageband open, using Command + H will hide your entire session so you can work in other programs on your computer.
  • You can also use Command + M to do the same thing.

Quick Tip: 

This will not close GarageBand.

Command + Q = Quit GarageBand 

Command + Q Quit Garageband - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Using the (Command + Q) function will allow you to quit GarageBand entirely, before asking you to save your project first.

Command + , (Comma) = Open Preferences Window

Command + , Open Preferences - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • Use (Command + ,) in Garageband to open the preference window to access changes for Audio/MIDI, Loops, and more.

Quick Tip: 

Cycle Mode can be great for practicing, repeat a part for listening or recording multiple takes. Make sure it’s set to “Merge” in the preferences as you can see in the image above.

Option + T = Configure the Track Header

Option + T Configure Track Header - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • With your Garageband project open, use the (Option + T) function to bring up the Track Header to show what capabilities have been enabled on the track region. This is also where you can enable the Groove Track, Recording, Track Lock, or Mute and Solo.

Option + Command + H = Hide Other Applications 

Option + Command + H - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • Use (Option + Command + H) or (Option + Command + M) in Garageband to minimize all other application windows outside of your project.

Command + N = Create a New Project

Command + N = Create a New Project - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • With Garageband open, use the (Command + N) function to start a new session or project. This will give you the option to save your current project before continuing as well.

Command + O = Open an existing project 

Command + O Open a New Project - Keyboard Shortcut Articles
  • Use the (Command + O) shortcut to open the list of existing projects in GarageBand. Locate and select the project you want to open and then click on it.

Command + S = Save the Current Project

Command + S - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • Use the (Command + S) shortcut to save your current Garageband project without giving it a new name or location. This is the shortcut to use if you’re simply trying to save the changes you have recently made.

Quick Tip: 

Make sure you save room on your computer by saving projects to an external hard drive like this one from Amazon.  

Shift + Command + S = Save Current Project As 

Shift + Command + S to Save As - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • Use (Command + Shift + S) to save your Garageband project with a different name or in a different location. This is also the shortcut that you’ll use if you want to save the project as an entirely separate file.

B = Show/Hide the Smart Controls Window 

B to Hide/Show Smart Controls - Keyboard Shortcut Article
  • With Garageband open, hit ‘B’ on your keyboard to bring up or hide the Smart Controls. This allows you to adjust the smart controls when editing and hide it automatically once you are done. 

Quick Tip:

Smart controls usually include reverb, EQ, tone controls, plugins, the master track, and more. It inhabits the space that’s also taken up by the Drummer Track, Piano Roll, Score Editor, or Audio Editor.

N = Show/Hide the Score Editor

N Shows the Score Editor - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • With Garageband open, press ‘N’ on your keyboard to bring up the Score Editor which shows MIDI regions as standard musical notation. You can add notes and edit any notation using the Score Editor. 

Quick Tip:

This is very useful for transposition purposes.

Command + W = Close the Current Window Project

Command + W - Close the Project
  • Using the (Command + W) shortcut in Garageband allows you to quickly close the current project you’re working on. 

O = Show/Hide the Loop Browser 

O Open Loops - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • Press ‘O’ on your keyboard to bring up the Apple Loops browser which will display all available loops. They’re organized by a number of parameters, including key signature, tempo, instrument, genre, and descriptor.
  • Command + L also works for opening the Apple Loops browser.

Quick Tip: 

Filter loops by categories and subcategories inside the loop library. You can also make your own (my guide).

Y = Show/Hide the Library 

Y to Hide Library - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • Hit (Y) on your keyboard with Garageband open to bring up the library which will give access to all of the instruments, settings, and patches for your project.  

Quick Tip:

You can also use this shortcut to quickly minimize the library that way you have more space for your project and less distractions.

Option + Command + O = Open Movie Window

Command + Option + O Open Movie Track - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • Use the (Option + Command + O) shortcut in Garageband to open the window where Movie files are stored, that way you can create a soundtrack in real-time. 

Quick Tip:

You can only use one movie per project, and you cannot edit the movie, only the sound. 

Option + Command + G = Show/ Hide the Alignment Guide 

Option + Command + G for Alignment Guides - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • In Garageband, the (Option + Command + G) shortcut turns on the function by which guides appear when the edges of a region you’re moving align with another region.

Quick Tip:

Snap to Grid and Alignment Guides work together. Turning off one or the other will impact both of them.

P = Show/Hide the Piano Roll Editor 

P for Piano Roll - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • In Garageband, hitting (P) on your keyboard will open the Piano Roll Editor which shows MIDI regions as small green rectangles on a grid. You can add and edit notes by extending the duration of the note or by increasing the velocity. Piano Roll is capable of much more as I’ve explained in my Piano Roll tutorial.

Quick Tip:

You can quantize note timing by region (my guide on this), and the editor also shows time divisions for precise timing. 

Option + Command + P = Show/Hide the note pad

Option + Command + P Show-Hide Note Pad - Keyboard Shortcuts Article
  • Using the (Option + Command + P) shortcut in Garageband brings up the Note Pad where you can write, edit and save notes for your project. 

Quick Tip:

This is an incredibly useful tool for many different reasons. I often use the Note Pad if there is something I have to remember about the project for the next time I open it. Additionally, I can make notes for myself on what needs to be improved or considered.

Shift + Command + O = Show/Hide the Movie Track

Shift + Command + O = Show/Hide the Movie Track - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • The (Shift + Command + O) shortcut will bring up the movie track in Garageband. This will show frames of the movie as thumbnails above the audio track so you can edit along with them.  

Quick Tip:

To see more or less thumbnails, zoom in or out of the movie track. 

Command + X = Cut 

Command + X for Cutting = Keyboard Shortcuts
  • In Garageband, you can use the (Command + X) shortcut to delete or move parts of your recording, whether it be a drummer track region, audio region, or midi region.

Shift + Return = Rename the Selected Track

Shift + Return = Rename the Selected Track - Shortcuts for Garageband
  • Use (Shift + Return) to choose a new name for your instrument, audio, or drummer track header in Garageband. This isn’t for the region, however, only for the main track header.

Quick Tip:

This won’t open the Track Dialog to let you save in a new place

Command + C = Copy

Command + C to Copy - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • In Garageband, you can use the (Command + C) shortcut to quickly copy a part from any type of recording.

Command + V = Paste 

Command + V Paste - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Use the (Command + V) shortcut in Garageband to paste a copied recording to another part of the track or to an entirely different section.

Quick Tip:

You can paste external files into GarageBand with this shortcut too. 

Delete = Delete

Delete on Keyboard - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • With Garageband open, press (Delete) on your keyboard to delete anything that you don’t want in your recording.

Command + A – Select All

Command + A - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Use the shortcut (Command + A) in Garageband to select all tracks in your session. 

Shift + N = Rename Selected Regions

Shift + N - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Use (Shift + N) to rename the region that you’ve selected in Garageband. Note that this renames the region itself rather than the name of the track header.

Command + Z = Undo 

Command + Z = Undo - Keyboard Shortcuts for Garageband
  • In Garageband, use the shortcut (Command + Z) to undo changes that you’ve recently made. Usually, you can undo every single action that you’ve done in the project over the last single session.

    Quick Tip: 

This is especially useful if you’ve made a mistake. Without question this is the shortcut I most frequently use.

Shift + Command + Z = Redo Delete

Shift + Command + Z Redo Delete - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Use the (Shift + Command + Z) shortcut in Garageband to redo changes that you’ve recently made. This is similar to the regular undo command, except it’s meant for restoring a previous deletion.

Q = Quantize Selected Events

Q for Quantize - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • With Garageband’s piano roll or audio editor open, press (Q) on your keyboard to turn on the quantization function in Garageband.

Option + Command + Q = Turn Off Quantization

Option + Command + Q Turn Off Quantization - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Using the (Option + Command + Q) shortcut in Garageband will turn off the quantization.

Command + J = Join Regions or Notes

Command + J Join Regions - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Use the (Command + J) shortcut to join audio or MIDI regions together in Garageband.

Quick Tip:

Note that you’ll often get a prompt that you’ll need to create a new region for a “non-contiguous” audio file. Additionally, the latest Garageband update allows you to merge more than one track together in a stereo or mono file, similar to how it’s done in iOS which I wrote about here.

E = Show/Hide the Editor Window

Hit E on your Keyboard to Bring up the Editor - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • With your Garageband project open, hit (E) on your keyboard to bring up the Editor window where you can control the Piano Roll, Audio, or Score Editor. This is the same location as the drummer track and Smart Controls as well.

Control + Command + F = Enter/Exit Screen Mode

Control + Command + F Full Screen - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Hit (Control + Command + F) on your keyboard to make Garageband fit the entire screen. Screen Mode leaves no excess background around your project that way you don’t get distracted.

Arrangement Shortcuts 

Option + Command + N = Create a new track 

Option + Command + N New Track - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • The shortcut (Option + Command + N) in Garageband allows you to add a new track to your existing project. Unlike the other commands, it allows you to choose which track type from the main “Choose A Track Type” menu.

Quick Tip:

This is useful mostly for the sake of fixing your input and output settings. It’s faster than going into the Preferences, and it also allows you to put the track in stereo or mono similar to the Smart Controls option.

Option + Command + A = Create a New Audio Track 

Option + Command + A New Audio Track - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • The (Option + Command + A) shortcut inserts an audio track into your Garageband project. It will not open the main “Choose A Track” option; it will automatically insert an audio track into the project. 

Option + Command + S = Create a New Software Instrument Track 

Option + Command + S Software Instrument - Keyboard Shortcus
  • The (Option + Command + S) shortcut inserts a new software instrument track into your Garageband project.

Option + Command + U = Create a New Drummer Track 

Option + Command + U Drummer Track - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • The (Option + Command + U) shortcut inserts a new drummer track into your Garageband project.

Command + Delete = Delete the Selected Track

Command + Delete Delete Track - Keyboard Shortcut
  • Use the (Command + Delete) shortcut in Garageband to delete the entire track and everything in it in contrast to just the “Delete” option which will delete the contents of the track but not the whole track region.

Command + D = Duplicate Track

Command + D Delete Track - Keyboard Shortcut
  • In Garageband, use the (Command + D) shortcut to duplicate a track with the exact same track settings as the one highlighted. 

Quick Tip:

This will not duplicate the actual audio, drummer, or MIDI region of the track; it will only duplicate the header including all of the settings, plugins, and effects.

Shift + Command + V = Paste and Replace the Current Section 

Shift + Command + V - Keyboard Shortcut
  • Use the (Shift + Command + V) in Garageband to copy a section and replace another selected region in the exact same way.

Command  + T = Split the Selected Region 

Command + T Split Region at Playhead - Keyboard Shortcut
  • In Garageband, the (Command + T) shortcut will split an audio, MIDI, or drummer track right at the playhead arrow.

Control + Shift + Command + Delete = Delete All Automation on the Selected Track

Control + Shift + Command + Delete (Delete All Automation) - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • The (Control + Shift + Command + Delete) shortcut allows you to delete all of the automation points on a selected track in your Garageband project. Make sure the track has been highlighted first.

Quick Tip: 

Make sure not to select any regions, or they too will be deleted. 

Control + Shift + O = Add Selected Region to the Apple Loops Library 

Control + Command + O Add to Loop Library - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • In Garageband, use the (Control + Shift + O) shortcut to save a region of your project in the Loop Library. Once you’ve given it a name, you can use it in any other project.

Command + Shift + i = Add Audio from Library

Command + Shift + i Add Audio - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Use (Command + Shift + i) to quickly import an audio file from your library, into an audio track region in Garageband. Just make sure you’ve actually selected the audio track before you use the command, otherwise, it won’t work as intended.

Quick Tip:

If you’re looking for a quick way to load up a sample into Garageband (my guide on this), this is how you do it.  

Shift + Command + X = Show/Hide Transposition Track

Shift + Command + X Transposition Track - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • In Garageband, use the (Shift + Command + X) shortcut to bring up the transposition track which contains transposition events for pitch changes.

Quick Tip: 

Transpose MIDI regions and audio files over a designated amount of time by using the transposition track. 

Command + Shift + T = Show/Hide tempo Track

Command + Shift + T Tempo Track - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Use the (Command + Shift + T) shortcut to bring up or hide the tempo track in Garageband. This allows you to change the tempo wherever you see fit according to an automation line. I’ve talked all about this before in my tempo guide.

Quick Tip

Since GarageBand 10, you can now change the tempo in the middle of a project by adjusting the Tempo Track. I’ve also written a guide on this.

Shift + Command + A = Show/Hide the Arrangement Track

Shift + Command + A Arrangement Track - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • In Garageband, use (Shift + Command + A) to show or hide the arrangement track. This allows you to rearrange entire sections of your composition in whatever order you wish. The arrangement track uses common songwriting terminology like verse, chorus, bridge, intro, and outro.

Playhead Arrow Shortcuts / Navigation 

Home = Scroll Backward One Page  

Home Scroll Backward - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Pressing (Home) on your computer keyboard will scroll backward in your Garageband project by one page (the visible width of the timeline).

Quick Tip:

Return will also go to the beginning.

End = Scroll Forward One Page

End Scroll Forward One Page - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Pressing (End) on your keyboard will scroll forward in your Garageband project by one page.

Space Bar = Start Playback From Selection

Space Bar - Start Playback - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • With Garageband open, press the Space Bar on your keyboard to start your playback from the section designated by the playhead arrow rather than from the beginning of a track region.

Shift + Space Bar = Start Playing From the Beginning

Shift + Space Bar for Region Playing - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Using the (Shift + Space Bar) shortcut in Garageband will start playing the recording right from the beginning if the entire project has been selected, however, you can use this shortcut also to select audio, MIDI, and drummer track regions and begin playing from there.

Option + Return = Go to the End of the Region 

Option + Return for End of Region - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Use the (Option + Return) shortcut to scroll to the end of whatever region you’re working on in Garageband. This shortcut functions similarly to the ‘End’ keyboard shortcut.

Shift + Command + . (Period) = Move the Cycle Range Forward by One Cycle Range 

Shift + Command + Period Scroll Cycle Area - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Using the (Shift + Command + Period) shortcut in Garageband will move the cycle range forward by one cycle which is determined by the original’s width.

Shift + Command + , (Comma) = Move the Cycle Range Backward By One

Shift + Command + Comma Moving Cycle Range - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Using the (Shift + Command + Comma) shortcut in Garageband will move the cycle range backward by one cycle which is determined by the original’s width.

Left Arrow = Select the Previous Region on the Selected Track or Event in the Editor

Left Arrow (Move From Region to Region) - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Use the Left Arrow on your keyboard with Garageband open to move from region to region from right to left.

Right Arrow = Select the Next Region on the Selected Track or Event in the Editor

Right Arrow (Move From Region to Region) - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Use the Right Arrow on your keyboard with Garageband open to move from region to region from left to right.

, (Comma) = Move the Playhead Arrow Back One Bar 

Comma Move Playhead Arrow - Keyboard shortcuts
  • Using the (,) or Comma symbol on your keyboard with Garageband open will move the playhead arrow back by approximately one notch. Moving the playhead back by one bar moves it back one full bar on the timeline. 

. (Period) =  Move the Playhead Forward One Bar

Period Move Playhead Arrow - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Use the (.) or Period symbol on your keyboard to move the playhead arrow forward by one bar in Garageband. Moving the playhead forward by one bar moves it forward one full bar on the timeline.

Up Arrow = Select Next Higher Track 

Up Arrow to Move Region Up - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • With Garageband open, use the (Up) arrow on your keyboard to move upward from region to region. When working on multiple tracks, this shortcut allows you to easily move to the next highest track to edit or for playback. 

Down Arrow = Select the Next Lower Track

Down Arrow to Move Region Down - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • With Garageband open, use the (Down) arrow on your keyboard to move down from region to region. When working on multiple tracks, this shortcut allows you to easily move to the next lowest track to edit or for playback. 

] = Next Patch, Effect, or Instrument Setting

] Move to Next Patch - Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Use the ] key on your keyboard with Garageband open to move down through large libraries of patches, effects, or instrument settings. 

Note: You have to have the library open to use this feature.

  • Move quickly through large libraries of patches, effects, or instrument settings. 

[ = Previous Patch, Effect, or Instrument Setting 

[ Move to Previous Patch - Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Use the [ key on your keyboard with Garageband open to move up through large libraries of patches, effects, or instrument settings. 
  • Note: You have to have a library open to use this feature.

    Tab = Change Focus to Next Area in GarageBand Window

    Tab to Move Focus - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • Use (Tab) on your keyboard with Garageband open to shift focus between different parts of the interface. For example, you can scroll between the Library, Smart Controls, or the Workspace by using this shortcut.

    Note: This only works if more than one window is open in the workstation. 

    Shift + Tab = Change Focus to the Previous Area in the GarageBand Window

    Shift + Tab to Move Focus - Keyboard Shortcuts

    Use (Shift + Tab) on your keyboard with Garageband open to shift focus between different parts of the interface. For example, you’ll scroll between the Library, Smart Controls, or the Workspace, however, you’ll move to the previous section.

    Note: This only works if more than one window is open in the workstation. Additionally, this function is different in the sense that it shifts focus in the opposite direction.

    Recording and Playback  

    Space Bar/Enter = Play 

    Space-Bar-Start-Playback-Keyboard-Shortcuts-
    • Using the Space Bar on the keyboard with Garageband open will allow you to play whatever is in your project without having to click the playhead arrow in the workspace.

    Quick Tip: 

    This shortcut allows you to easily play or stop your recording without having to use your mouse.

    Zero (on Numeric Keypad) = Stop Playback

    Zero for Stop Playback and Rewind - Keyboard shortcuts
    • With Garageband open, use the (Zero) key on the numeric keypad to stop the recording from playing, and then press it a second time to rewind all the way to the beginning. The difference between this and the space-bar command is that the space-bar command won’t rewind to the start of the recording.

    Note: This only works on the numeric pad on the right-hand side of the keyboard, rather than on the main numbers directly above the letters.

    R = Start Recording

    R on Keyboard for Recording - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • Hit (R) on your keyboard with Garageband open to start recording from the playhead arrow.

    C = Turn Cycle Region On/Off

    Press C for Cycling - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • Use (C) on your keyboard with Garageband open to turn on the Cycle option. When Cycle Mode is turned on, it is displayed as a yellow strip in the upper part of the timeline ruler. When the Cycle Mode is turned off, it will no longer be visible. 
    • L = Will also loop the selected region continuously.

    Quick Tip:

    When you play a project, the playback will start from the current position of the playhead unless cycle mode is turned on. If cycle mode is turned on, it plays from the beginning of the cycle area.

    K = Turn Metronome On/Off

    K for Metronome - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • Press (K) on your keyboard with Garageband open to bring up the metronome. Use the metronome while you record to keep in time with the beat. Or turn it off if you don’t need it while you record.  

    Shift + K = Turn Count in On/Off 

    Shift + K for Count-In - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • With Garageband open, use the (Shift + K) shortcut to turn on the count-in button. This gives you a 4-second count-in before the recording begins. Note that this only works for recording and not for playback.

    Control + R = Turn Record Enable for the Selected Track On or Off

    Control + R - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • Use the (Control + R) shortcut with Garageband open in order to enable a track for recording. Note that this doesn’t start recording; it makes it so the track is capable of recording.

    Quick Tip: 

    If the Record Enable buttons are not visible, you can configure the track headers to show them. 

    Option + Command + Delete = Delete the Selected Arrangement Marker

    Option + Command.+ Delete - Cut the Selected Arrangement Marker
    • With GarageBand open, use the (Option + Command + Delete) shortcut to delete the arrangement marker after it has been selected.

    Option + T = Configure the Track Header

    Option + T - Configure the Track Header
    • With GarageBand open, use the (Option + T) shortcut to bring up the track header configuration. This will pop up a window with track controls like Mute, Solo, Restore Defaults, in addition to the ability to turn on Record Enable, Input Monitoring, as well as the Groove Track.

    Shift + Space Bar = Start Playback from Beginning

    Shift-Space-Bar-for-Region-Playing-Keyboard-Shortcuts
    • Using the (Shift + Space Bar) shortcut with Garageband open will start the recording back from the beginning of the project.

    Master Volume Shortcuts  

    Command + Shift + Left Arrow = Lower Master Volume 

    Command + Shift + Left for Master Volume Decrease - Keyboard Shortcuts copy
    • Use the (Command + Shift + Left Arrow) shortcut to lower the master volume of the Garageband project.

    Command + Shift + Right Arrow = Raise Master Volume 

    Command + Shift + Right for Master Volume Increase - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • Use the (Command + Shift + Right Arrow) shortcut to increase the master volume of the Garageband project.

    Command + Shift + M = Show/Hide the Master Track

    Command + Shift + M Master Track - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • Use the (Command + Shift + M) shortcut to bring up Garageband’s master track. The master track is a channel by which you can add effects, automation, panning, processing, and more on the entire project as a whole, rather than just on individual track regions.

    Note: Command B also works. 

    Quick Tip:

    You can add, edit, reorder, and remove effects on the master track by clicking the master button in the smart controls menu bar. 

    Dynamics and Volume Shortcuts

    M = Mute/Unmute the Selected Track

    M for Mute - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • With Garageband open and a track highlighted, hit ‘M’ on your keyboard to turn it on Mute so you don’t hear the track during playback.

    Quick Tip: 

    Muting a track is useful when you want to hear the project without that specific track in it. I most commonly use this for mixing.

    Control + Option + Command + S = Turn Solo On/Off for All Solo’d Tracks

    Control + Option + Command + S Solo - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • Using the shortcut (Command + Control + Option + S) in Garageband will solo the very first instrument track in your project, however, using ‘S’ on your keyboard is a much better way of doing the same thing because it gives you the option to move between tracks.

    Quick Tip:

    This is great is you are isolating tracks for editing or listening

    Note: For whatever reason, this command only works for the top track region, rendering it useless. It doesn’t matter what track you’ve highlighted.

    A = Show/Hide Automation Lanes 

    A for Automation Lines - Keyboard Shortcuts'

    Quick Tip:

    This is especially useful to fade in/fade out parts of the song that ring out too much or for too long. It’s also good for increasing or decreasing volume in cases where the performance’s amplitude is inconsistent, for example, during a vocal performance.

    Control + i = Turn Monitoring for the Selected Track On/Off

    Control + i - Use A on your Keyboard to Bring up Automation
    • Use the (Control + i) shortcut with Garageband open to turn monitoring on for your audio track region. When you turn on monitoring for a track, you hear the sound coming from the instrument or microphone connected to that track’s input. Turn it off and you won’t be able to hear yourself record.

    Quick Tip: 

    Turning monitoring on can be good for setting audio levels or practicing parts before you record them. Having this button turned off is the main reason why people can’t hear themselves record as I’ve explained before.

    Option + Space = Preview the Selected Audio

    Option + Space Preview Audio - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • Press (Option + Space Bar) on an audio track in Garageband to preview the audio in solo.

    Quick Tip: 

    This only works in the Audio Editor, and it’s very useful for checking your performance by itself, rather than in the context of the mix.

    Option + Up Arrow = Transpose Selected Notes Up One Semitone

    Option + Up Arrow Transpose - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • In Garageband, use the shortcut (Option + Up Arrow) to increase the pitch of a note by one semi-tone in the piano roll, audio editor, or score editor.

    Option + Down Arrow = Transpose Selected Notes Down One Semitone 

    Option + Down Arrow Transpose - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • Use the keyboard shortcut, (Option + Down Arrow) in Garageband to transpose the note down in pitch by one semi-tone with the piano roll, audio region, or score editor open.

    Option + Shift + Up Arrow = Transpose Selected Notes Up One Octave. 

    Option + Shift + Up Arrow  Transpose Octave - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • With Garageband’s piano roll or audio editor open, use (Option + Shift + Up Arrow) to increase the pitch of every note by one octave.

    Option + Shift + Down Arrow = Transpose Selected Notes Down One Octave 

    Option + Shift + Down Arrow  Transpose Octave - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • With Garageband’s piano roll or audio editor open, use (Option + Shift + Down Arrow) to decrease the pitch of every note by one octave.

    How Do I Create A Shortcut in GarageBand? 

    Create a keyboard shortcut for Garageband by going to your macOS Systems Preferences menu in the top left corner. Click Keyboard > Shortcuts > App Shortcuts, and then the “+” icon. Select Garageband from the drop-down menu and type in the appropriate Menu Title you want to make a shortcut for.

    If you come up with shortcuts that are rejected it’s because the system is already using it. You may have to try several before the system will accept one that is not already in use. Frankly, I haven’t quite figured out what this even does yet, but maybe some other users could figure it out.

    How Do I Bring Up Keyboard Controls in GarageBand 

    Command + K = Show Onscreen Keyboard

    Command + K Bring up Musical Typing - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • With Garageband open and a track selected, use (Command + K) to bring up the Musical Typing feature, which is a digital keyboard that work with the keys on your typing keyboard. In other words, it’s an alternative to an actual MIDI keyboard like the Arturia KeyLab 88 from zZounds (arguably the best one).

    Quick Tip:

    You can use this keyboard like you would a piano when you’re recording, however, only a couple of octaves will show at a time.

    How Do You Zoom in On GarageBand? 

    Command + Left Arrow = Horizontal Zoom Out

    Command + Left Zoom Out - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • Use the (Command + Left Arrow) shortcut to zoom out of your Garageband project so you can see everything together.

    Quick Tip: 

    Use this feature to look at your project from start to finish. 

    Command + Right Arrow = Horizontal Zoom In

    Command + Right Arrow Zoom In - Keyboard Shortcuts
    • Use the shortcut (Command + Right Arrow) to zoom in to your Garageband project to see more details of one specific section in the workspace.

    Quick Tip: 

    This is especially useful if you need to edit minute details that you wouldn’t otherwise be able to see or isolate. This is a great way to make sure the smallest details can be focused on and edited. 

    How Do You Snap To the Grid in GarageBand? 

    Command + G = Turn Snap to Grid On or Off

    Command + G Snap to Grid - Keyboard Shortcuts

    Use the (Command + G) shortcut to turn on the “Snap to Grid” feature in Garageband. Because the tracks are aligned on a grid, it helps to align points to time divisions found on the ruler. When snap to grid is on, the notes that are added will automatically snap to the next grid line.

    Important Things to Note About Keyboard Shortcuts

    1) Shortcuts Can Do Just About Everything in GarageBand, But Not Everything

    There is a colored shortcut keyboard cover and mouse pad you can purchase on Amazon that may help you edit faster (on Amazon at the relevant links). They’re primarily used for Logic, which is GarageBand’s big brother from Apple, however, many of the keyboard shortcuts do translate the majority of GarageBand’s shortcuts.

    Gear Mentioned

    1) Seagate Backup Plus (from Amazon)

    2) Arturia KeyLab 88 (from zZounds)

    3) Colored Keyboard Cover (from Amazon)

    4) Keyboard Shortcut Mouse Pad (from Amazon)