How to delete songs from your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch on iOS 8

Despite the larger capacity options available, it’s not uncommon to find yourself desperate to free up space for a movie rental, photos or app. If you are on the go, it can be difficult to find areas where you can free up storage space. If you make it a habit to regularly sync your music, then you can safely delete songs on your iPhone, freeing up valuable space. The advent of iTunes Match will also help, since the subscription based service will allow you to download any song where you have wireless coverage. No longer do you have to carry all of your music. With any version of iOS, including iOS 8, the process of deleting music on the iPhone is super easy. Read on for our video on how to delete songs from iPhone. Please note that the process differs slightly between older versions of iOS.

Updated on February 10,2015.

Delete songs iPhone on iOS 7
To delete songs on your iPhone using either iOS 5 or iOS 6, simply navigate to the track in the Music app and swipe right. You’ll be prompted to click on the ‘Delete‘ button, which will remove the song(s) from your iPhone. This process remains the same for albums and even at the artist level. With a swipe and a click, I can delete my entire collection of Vanilla Ice. Not that I would do something crazy like that, but the option is there if I were to need space while on the go.

How to delete songs from iPhone on iOS 7 or iOS 8

If you are running iOS 7 or iOS 8,  it too allows you to delete songs from your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. Open your Music app and navigate through either Artists, Songs or Albums to the song you would like to delete. From right to left, swipe your finger across the song you would like to delete. You should see a red box that says ‘Delete’ (shown above). Tap on it to remove the song from your iOS device. This has been tested with iTunes Match both disabled and enabled.


If you are an iTunes Match subscriber, it is recommended that you show only music that has been downloaded to your device. To do this, navigate to Settings > Music and toggle ‘Show All Music’ to off. With this setting, the Music app will no longer show music from iCloud.

Tip: Please note that at this point, iOS does not allow you to delete albums.

Deleting Songs in iOS 6
I have confirmed that the method described above does indeed work in iOS 6. The requirement is that you do not have iTunes Match enabled. Navigate to Settings > Music > iTunes Match (Off). Double click the home button, then press and hold the Music icon. Press the “-” sign to quit. Relaunch the Music app and you’ll see only the files that physically on your iPhone. Navigate to ‘Songs’. Swipe your finger from right to left to reveal the delete button. Tap on it to delete these songs from your iPhone.

How to delete songs from your iPhone is part of a continuing series of iPhone tips, tricks and basics.

  • Ashley

    You wouldn’t happen to know how to delete songs directly from your iPad would you? I’ve tried the “swipe” method but it’s just not bringing up the remove button. Am I doing something wrong or can I just not do it?

    • Kenzi

      Its not working for me. I have ipod generation 1 or 2 and it won’t work.

      • Mekenzie

        What he means is that all you have to do is this;
        1. Go to music
        2. Either go to songs or artists
        3. Find the song you want to delete or get rid of.
        4. Swipe the song left
        5. Press delete
        6. Your done, as easy as cake

        • cutr

          thks bro….

        • Cassie Danner

          Mekenzie, thanks so much for this! I have been trying to figure this out for a little while now and your answer was by far the best!!

        • Wendy House

          You are a star! Thank you so much,I couldn’t believe how easy it was.

          • Brian

            it wasn’t that easy if you needed to look it up and even have more detailed instructions.

        • Diana

          It’s not working for me everytime I swipe it left or right it will not show the delete button. This only started to give me problems when I updated the software to ios7

          • jess

            same here i cant work it out

          • Sue

            Same exact thing is happening to me Diana

    • james

      thanks it helped me

  • Desiree olazava

    Ya im on da same page as ashley…

  • fluff

    thanks :)
    @ashley : i’ve tried this and it worked fine with me., i was able to delete my songs ., i just swiped the title of the song/artist/album and it appeared :)

  • Sammy

    Iy deleted all my songs on iPad perfectly apart from 3 , and I dnt know why …..? Grrr

  • Matt

    I think its in the ‘recently added’ playlist you can’t delete i have the same problem

  • M.K. Kerbel

    Thank you man im glad i found your article and be happy with my iPhone

  • Hanna

    When i click set right there is no delet button!

  • Jan

    How do you restore the deleted music? I accidentally erased my favorite album off of my iPad, and even though I’ve synced my iPad with iTunes, the deleted song doesn’t come back!

    • Christopher Meinck

      Make sure it’s set to sync in iTunes. Connect your iPhone to your Mac/PC and iTunes should launch. Click on your iPhone and the ‘Music’ tab. Does the album have a check next to it?

  • Ehlmsky

    Yes it work’s on my phone! Thank’s!

    • Justin

      Go to the iTunes store and go to purchased on the bottom. Hit music. Hit not on this iPod on top.

  • Paul

    My problem is the grey circle next to songs, which were interrupted downloads. They try to download, but won’t. I’d like to delete them, but the swipe right doesn’t work. Any suggestions? Thanks in advance.

    • Christopher Meinck

      Sorry for the late response. Your best bet is to try removing via iTunes or try a restore of your iPhone. Not the easiest method, but guaranteed to fix the issue.

  • Stuart Fraser

    Thanks, easy when you know how.

  • Tori

    I have iPhone 3? I think. And the swipe method doesn’t work with my phone. Am I going to have to sync and delete from library? Or is there a shorter way…

  • Mark

    i’ve tried swiping but the delete option never shows up. Am I diong something wrong?

  • Katie

    i have done the delete, but when i sync it come back, i don’t want it to come back after syncing. i try and delete it from itunes under my phone -> music, but i can’t delete it.

    • Christopher Meinck

      Connect your iPhone to your Mac/PC. Within iTunes, click on your iPhone and then select the ‘Music’ tab. Here you can control what music gets synced to your iPhone. The songs are probably re-syncing.

  • Marites

    thank you so much! Ive been wanting to delete the old songs I downloaded before but I didnt know how. I was amaze how easy to delete it hahahaha laughing at myself after .you just swipe it towards left and the delete will appear. thanks a lot. its so easy!

  • Amina

    I can,t dealet music

  • Vance Grey

    At first I thought Apple customers were so stupid that someone needed to
    write a How-To for deleting files. I’m forced to use an iPhone for
    work and the UI is HORRIBLE. The simplest tasks are tedious and
    designed to force you into either the app or iTunes store. No
    user-generated content allowed.

  • Ben Grimer

    Thanks, I’ve been trying to do this all evening and FINALLY I came across the correct advice. Much Appreciated

  • Ramin

    Cheers pal!

  • Anthony

    There are some songs I want to delete, but they appear faded on my phone and I can’t swipe to bring up the delete button. Any ideas or solutions?

  • Chris

    Thank you finally found the delete button. So simple!

  • rumpofsteelskin

    thank you i totally forgot that slide right even was a possiblity

  • Geoffrey

    great time for IOS 5, but how about an update for IOS 6 as this doesnt work anymore

    • Tim

      Works for me in IO6 on all but the song I just posted about.

  • Tim

    I have a song listed twice and one won’t play, or let me delete it. Any
    suggestions? I think it was an interrupted download and when I synced
    it, it added it again. I’d like to delete the unplayable one but can’t
    with swipe. It doesn’t appear in iTunes either.

    • Christopher Meinck

      Hey Tim, as I mentioned on Twitter, you might want to try to do a restore. I think you’re right, the interrupted download has left that file in limbo. Good luck and report back. My apologies for the late response.

  • Houston

    Thank you God ! Thank you man, i am glad i found your article. I am happy now with my iPhone, too :)

  • Kristen Springthorpe

    Thank you! That was so helpful.

    • Christopher Meinck

      Awesome. Glad you found it helpful.

  • Kid Charlemagne

    the swipe and delete method does NOT work in io6. apple removed the feature (much to the chagrin of its users). frustrating

  • Kathy Fields Roark

    Did NOT work no option to delete I could swipe left all day

    • Christopher Meinck

      Do you have iTunes Match turned on?

  • Rivkah Lambert Adler

    I was very frustrated by the inability to move my music from one laptop to a new one. It’s shouldn’t be this complicated. In the end, this tip was a workaround and there should be an easier way to do it, but I’m very grateful!

  • Ann Marie Jarrett-Hall

    Thank you very much.

  • Debbie K

    Hi, got an iphone, kids filled it with ‘their’ music for me….my dilema; im deleting songs in the car then when i back up the iphone on the PC it brought them all back, now i cant remember which ones i deleted!!! Question: How do delete songs off my iphone and try and remember which ones i need to delete from itunes OR can you some how ‘mark’ songs on the iphone to know which ones to delete OR can you have itunes know which songs have been sync’d and not sync again so they dont come back? i.e. Some of my kids music isnt bad but not all of it ;-)

  • Hem Thapa

    thank you !!!finally you make it so easy.

  • Razor

    I have iOS 4.3.3 and iPhone 3GS, so I can’t find the iTunes Match! I searched my whole iPhone, and I can’t find it!

  • Brian Lindsay

    The bigger question all should be asking is; WTH are you doing with Vanilla Ice on your phone to begin with?!?!?!?

  • Kim

    THANK YOU!!!! Everything else I have looked up has been so difficult. This is exactly what I was looking for!

  • Ginny Northcott


  • Ironyboy

    It real work for me,thank you for your help.

  • Selby


  • Pauline Estrella

    After deleting some music from my I Pad the icons are still there cluttering my music box. How do I get rid of them??

    • Pauline Estrella

      I deleted the songs by holding the icon til the X came then deleted them. The files are still there but empty and cluttering! It won’t let me swipe and delete these empty files!!!

  • BdB

    My problem is that when I link to iTunes, it re-adds the songs I’ve deleted. Any way to the an auto sync off? Because I can’t delete the songs off the phone via iTunesi

  • BdB

    My problem is that when I link to iTunes, it re-adds the songs I’ve deleted. Any way to turn the auto sync off? Because I can’t delete the songs off the phone via iTunes

  • Emma

    I try the swipe method on my iPad and it don’t work

  • j

    it worked on my iphone thanks for the information!

  • Dede

    SWEET! Thanks for the info! I was just about to use up all my storage because I had downloaded songs before I started using iCloud to store my music. This cleared off like 1700 songs.

  • Flamekeeper

    You are now my God. I worship you, O master of the Universe.

  • Hannah Beating

    why wont it work??

  • Chris

    stop saying this is “easy”. it’s not easy, it’s asinine. That you had to post a “how-to” on what should be a self-explanatory task proves that this is yet another design flaw from Apple.

  • T Shaw

    Thanks so much!! That was about the easiest thing I have done on my iphone yet :)

  • Gina

    Finally someone who knows how to speak my language!! Thank you thank you thank you

  • christo

    Does not work for me on iPhone 5 in ios 6.1.4, iTunes Match is OFF. No swiping, left or right, no Delete button.

    • Christopher Meinck

      Make sure you are in ‘Songs’. In iOS 6.1.4, wipe from left to right to reveal the Delete button.

  • Max

    Does this method delete the songs completely from the internal storage of the device? Or does it just make it disappear?

    • Christopher Meinck

      It will delete the song from your internal storage. This is a great way to free up storage space, if needed.

  • Tiffany

    Just figured this out. It does work with iOS6. You cannot do a quick swipe. Go directly to your songs list (not a playlist). Find the song you want to delete. Start at the right and somewhat “hold down” then swipe left. Quick swiping plays the songs, but holding your finger with some pressure and slowly swipping should bring up the delete button. Then you can remove individual songs. You do not want to remove from playlists because that is the “sub file” of all your songs and won’t remove completely from your iphone. Can do with an artist or album as well.

    • Cathy Moscariello

      Thank you for sharing this! I just tried it and it worked!!

  • Maria

    I cannot delete my music file using your directions. I am using iOS 7 and when I try it I lock up my music app. I have to close it, swipe to totally close it, and then I can go back into the app. I am also stuck “processing” two music files. Any suggestions? I am ready to throw my iPhone out the window since I got the new update!

  • Christopher Meinck

    Hey folks, I’ve added a video that shows you how to delete songs from both iOS 6 and iOS 7. Hope this helps.

  • Mike

    Cannot delete one particular song. iTunes Match in iPad 7 is switched off and every other song shows the delete button yet not this one song. Any suggestions?

    • Christopher Meinck

      Is Home Sharing on? I had a similar issue with a song in limbo. Turned Home Sharing off and it disappeared.

  • Jkb

    I have tried both the swipe method and the syncing method to remove certain songs, but the swipe method doesn’t work on those songs, and the syncing doesn’t remove them, no matter how many times I try. iTunes Match is turned off. Could you please help me? Not much space for the new music I want because it’s filled with songs I don’t want…

  • Tracyjo Jorgensen Tilch

    I need help deleting songs we did not order from our iPad 4 and the swipe action isn’t working on these specific songs