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How to Add Your Favorite Songs and Other Music to Instagram Stories “Smartphones :: Gadget Hacks


Music goes well with almost any Instagram story, but adding a particular song or soundtrack isn’t the most obvious task if you’ve never tried it before or haven’t done it in a long time.

Instagram Stories has supported embedded music since 2018, but some things have changed over the years. For one, you could choose a song from Instagram’s music database before shooting a video with the Story camera. This way you could react in the video to the music being played.

Now, there are two official ways to add music to your story, as well as at least one unofficial method, all described below. Before proceeding, make sure you are using the latest version of Instagram on your iPhone (App Store link) or Android phone (Google Play link) so that you have all the latest features.

Option 1: Choose a song from the music sticker

To add a song from Instagram’s music database, which contains thousands of popular tracks, upload or take a photo or video in the Story camera. Once loaded, tap the sticker icon in the tool list and choose “MUSIC” from the sticker drawer to access the song selection.

You’ll see music recommendations in the “For You” tab, but you can also open the “Browse” tab to search more categories or use the search bar to find a specific song. If no results appear after a search, the track is not available in Instagram’s song catalog.

To preview a song, tap the play button next to it. Tap the song name when you’re satisfied. A preview clip for the track will load, and you can drag the timeline at the bottom to select a different part of the song. To shorten the clip, which defaults to a maximum of 15 seconds, tap the time icon and select a shorter period.

Selecting one of the text options AA, Aa, or A will display the lyrics of the clip in different ways. The two box and line icons let you choose between a small or large sticker card that includes the album cover, song name, and artist. You can also tap the on-screen sticker or lyrics to navigate the layouts.

To change the font color or the background color of the box, tap the color wheel at the top until you find a color you like.

When your sticker is ready, tap “Done” at the top to add it to your photo or video. You can tap the sticker at any time to edit the clip again. And like any other sticker, you can resize it and move it wherever you want.

If you want to choose another song, open the clip editor and tap the album cover icon next to the color wheel. To remove the sticker, long press it, then drag it down and drop it into the trash that appears.

Not all songs will have lyrics available. If not, you can only choose the small or the large sticker with the cover, the name of the song and the artist.

Option 2: Share a song from a music service

If you only want to show off a song you like, you can share it to your Instagram story. When you do, a sticker with the album cover, artist, and song name will appear above an auto-generated background, along with the service you shared the track from. You can also share an album, which displays the artist and album art, and artists, which displays the artist’s name and photo.

Various services are supported, including but not limited to Apple Music, Deezer, Pandora, SoundCloud, Spotify, Tidal, and YouTube Music.

While the song will play immediately for your audience with option 1 above, sharing music on Instagram will only show the card, and the viewer needs to tap it to see that song on the service you used. It’s a huge difference depending on the effect you want to have on your audience.

Unfortunately, you cannot share tracks stored locally on your device, only music from streaming services. For example, from the Music app on an iPhone, you can share a song from the Apple Music service, but not your library, unless that song matches that of Apple Music.

Share the track, album, or artist from the music service as you normally would, and select “Instagram” or “Instagram Stories” from the sharing options. Ignore other possibilities such as “Instagram Chats”, which will send the music in a direct message.

If you don’t see “Instagram” or “Instagram Stories” as a sharing option, you may need to add it. For example, on an iPhone, swipe to the end of Sharing Extensions and tap “More”. You can tap “Instagram” from there to share it or tap “Edit” and add “Instagram” to the main list of sharing extensions for easier access later.

As seen above, the song, album or artist you are sharing will open as a card in your Story camera; You can resize it and move it wherever you want, just like any other sticker.

Option 3: Record video with background music

Apart from the two options above, you can also embed the music in a video you record for your story. Just make sure the song is playing in the background before shooting the video. You can capture video directly from the Story camera or upload one you took with another camera app. If you want people to know the song and artist, add them manually as on-screen text.




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Cover photo by Jake Peterson/Gadget Hacks; Screenshots and GIFs of Justin Meyers/Gadget Hacks