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Editing Your Video to Music

By Jake Larsen

So while I’m not usually one to toot my own horn, I would like to claim proficiency at video editing. I have a good amount of experience working with Adobe Premiere from working as a videographer here at Jacht, working for Barstool ‘Skers and some personal arthouse projects you can find on my Instagram. If there’s one thing I want people to take away from my projects, it’s…


Almost everything I’ve made is what you would call a “music video.” Not necessarily a piece of video promoting a new single for an artist, but video that interacts with the music being played in it. And I have seen too many people hold shots too long and cut in seemingly random places when they edit to music that I am now taking matters into my own hands. Here’s how to get the most out of your video when editing to music.

1. Learn Some Music Theory

The goal of this post isn’t to teach you music theory, but learning the basics will help you out a lot. If you learn about the sections of a song (intro, verse, chorus, etc.) as well as counting measures and time signature, your ability to edit with music will be an infinitely easier experience.

2. Pick Music That Matches the Video

The best way to get the most out of your music and video is by having them match in tempo in mood. In the case that you are trying to make a comedy video and you purposely choose a song that doesn’t match up, it is still important to find a way to make the pacing with both the music and the video to match up with each other.

3. Separate Out Your Song By Its Sections, and Put it Back Together How You Want

Alright, now it’s time to test what you learned about music theory, and to put that knowledge to use. (I’m talking about editing with music, of course.) . The first thing you need to do is pick your song, then take the cut tool and separate it out by the intro, verse, chorus and whatever else. In many cases, you will be working under a time limit rather than editing with the entire song, so seeing what parts of the song drag on or are more memorable than others, physically gives you a better sense of what you have to work with when you have to shorten it down for Instagram’s 1-minute limit. After this, decide on what you want to keep, and put the song back together in your own order. Remember to make the intro, outro and transitions as clean as you can make them. You don’t want your viewers to tell that you made the edit.

4. Put Your Video Clips With The Song Using The Mark Tool

So now that you’ve laid the song out the way you want to, you need to lay your clips properly with the music. One way to make it easier for you to remember important frames in the clips and spots in the music is to use the mark tool. With the simple hit of the “M key, you can mark the video, music, and even a part of the timeline. This is also the easiest way to match up your clips with the music if you leave the magnet option on. This way, your marks on the video and music will snap to line up with each other.

5. Keep Editing

And you’re done! Sort of. Before exporting, watch your project at least three times to check for any mistakes, or anything to improve.

1 Comment

Dec 27, 2022

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