Get-It Gear: Sweet Beats

Mix your own cheer music with these DIY editing programs.

Footloose and free: 
Available for both Windows and Mac, Audacity is a free, open-source download that can be used to edit different types of sound files; copy, splice or mix sound effects; and alter the speed or pitch of a recording. Newbies rave that Audacity is user-friendly and easy to learn—translation: great for putting together cheer music in a pinch. (Free;


Beats on ACID: Combine DIY convenience and powerful pro capability with Sony’s ACID Music Studio. The software’s Beatmapper tool allows you to import your songs and MP3s of choice for easy remixing; you’ll also get free access to the Sony Sounds Series loop library. For those looking to experiment, a free trial is available for download. FYI: for PC only. ($64.95 and up;


Just add turntable: Easy-to-follow visuals and simplicity of editing make DJ Audio Editor a beginner’s friend. Windows users will appreciate the ability to mix and match effects to create entirely original sounds; plus, effortlessly save files in an array of audio formats so that they can be compatible with any sound system. ($39.95;


Totally effect-ive: Mac users, take heed—though some music editing programs are PC-only, plenty of great options exist for Apple aficionados. If you’re a sucker for sound effects, look no further than Logic Pro 9. With more than 15,000 loops, 1,700 sampled instruments and 4,500 presets for plug-ins, you’ll have a deep library of resources to create one-of-a-kind cheer music. ($199.99;

Other programs we like:

FL Studio ($49 and up;

Acoustica Mixcraft 6 ($74.95;

Magix Music Maker 2013 ($59.99;

Adobe Audition CS6 ($349;


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