Can't delete songs in the Music app on your iPhone and iPad? Here's the fix!

Can't delete songs in the Music app on your iPhone and iPad? Here's the fix!

The Music app in iOS 7 didn't just come with an all new design, it came with an all new bug that's giving some of us trouble with deleting songs. What's supposed to happen is that you swipe a song, it brings up the delete button, and with a tap the song is gone. Unfortunately, for iTunes in the Cloud, that's sometimes not the case. The good news is all iTunes in the Cloud (and iTunes Match music) is safely backed up to Apple's servers. And that means you can fix the Music app bug with the nuclear option!

How to delete all songs from you iPhone and iPad Music app

  1. Launch the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Tap on General.
  3. Tap on Usage.
  4. Wait for the top Storage section at the top to load.
  5. Find Music in the list and tap on it.
  6. Tap on Edit at the top.
  7. Tap on the Delete option and then tap on Delete once more to confirm.

All the music on your iPhone or iPad should now be gone.

Yes, it's an all or nothing option, but it's the only way I've figured out to delete iTunes in the Cloud downloads if some of them are stuck. If you've found another way, be sure to shout out in the comments! And if you had this problem, let me know if this method gets rid of the stuck music for you!

Allyson Kazmucha

Editor for iMore, Potter pundit, and the ninja in your iOS

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There are 25 comments. Add yours.

Bias reduX says:

Yeah tried this early. Didn't work for me. I had to restore my phone as a new phone and then restore from a backup to get rid of those stuck songs.

Joelhers says:

What I've found, after reading three or four websites, is:

a) the "show all songs" has no effect other than hiding songs that are not on your device, but rather in the cloud -- so by doing this it may eliminate some confusion as you can't delete a song that's only in the cloud (i.e., not downloaded on your device); and

b) it seems to me you can only delete songs from the Songs, Album, or Artist 'tab' (click the 'Songs' or 'Album' or or 'Artist' icon at the bottom of the Music app) -- I can't seem to delete a song in a playlist, which is frustrating as I work out of playlists 90% of the time .

And yes, swiping right-to-left gets the Delete icon to show. This is the page that helped me the most:
http://ow.ly/xlngn

rtmarch says:

Had this problem. Called Apple Care. They said it's because of corrupted downloads from losing network connection while downloading songs or similar reasons. Apple Care recommended wiping the device and restoring from backup. Seems like this will do basically the same thing.

Allyson Kazmucha says:

I don't think so. Mine does this randomly all the time since iOS 7.

Sent from the iMore App

Sax_Derp says:

How to delete all *Songs*

Small fix, and we all know what you mean so it's good. BTW, I enjoy the faster info more than I enjoy spelling fixes

Posted via the Android iMore App!

vinny jr says:

That sucks. Having to delete all songs or nothing. That is ridiculous. IOS needs to repair this issue.

train21reb says:

Here's how to delete one at a time. Go to music app in settings. Click show all songs. Go back to the song you want to delete. Click the cloud icon next to it (re-download it). Then manually delete it after it's done downloading. Works for me.

Allyson Kazmucha says:

No. It doesn't work for people who have this issue. If you can do that, you don't have the stuck song issue.

Sent from the iMore App

MaryT C says:

You are a genius - I tried all the other fixes and frustrated myself trying to get rid of a song my husband downloaded on a shared account. Your suggestion worked in seconds.

DiddyMU says:

I've experienced this exact problem. I found if you go to settings>music and turn on 'show all purchases', then actually download the track in question, once downloaded you're then able to delete it. Then go back and turn off 'Show all purchases'. Annoying that a little over a month from a likely reveal of iOS8 and we're still talking about bugs in iOS7+ but there you go. Something I miss a great deal in the music app is the ability to tap and hold on a track to see a little bubble with the entire track name scroll across. Unless I'm missing something.

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Chris Wenz says:

Nicely done, thanks Train & Diddy

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DiddyMU says:

Sorted.

Sent from the iMore App

jman0829 says:

It didn't work for me. I deleted all the songs from the phone, I downloaded the songs again and try to delete them but it's useless. Even when I turn off the option to show the downloads somehow the songs I hate keep playing. According to Apple the only way to delete songs from iCloud is using iTunes Match. I am not sure if I am ready to pay 25 dollars to delete songs from the cloud. I am running out of ideas and trust me I tried everything you guys said here. I am frustrated with this situation.

Allyson Kazmucha says:

Yeah buying a service isn't a solution at all. I understand your frustration. I'll keep looking around for other options.

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AppleLifer1 says:

Thanks. It actually worked. Removed the songs
then synced my music. Now only the songs I
want are there, for now, and I save a lot of
room on my phone.

PopeJamal says:

We really shouldn't have to do this people.
This is exactly why I stopped using ios, because this is all too often the "solution" to fixing problems with their subpar Web services. Just pave over everything, start from scratch, and it just works. Mostly.

I'm not sure if Android is any better with their instability and horrible third party interfaces, so don't even play the fan boy card.

And while we're at it, how is it possible that arguably one of the best tech design houses in the world can fail so horribly at Web services to the point that it literally ruins the user experience? Really? The only way to manage the music on my cloud account is with a 10 year old fat client desktop app? Why do we spend all this money on this stuff anyway?
Get off my lawn!
/rant

Spartacuswines says:

I was driving me nuts. Thank for the fix Ali.

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Digitalrex says:

I figured out if you re download the song from iTunes Match (it will think it's not there and give you a download icon) you can delete it as normal ( I think when you play songs and it's still in the que they get stuck when you try and delete the file) my big problem though is why can't we delete albums anymore?

TheEuroIsOvervalued says:

I have been able to do this on a song-by-song basis, for those of you who do not wish to delete every song on your iPhone/iTouch etc...(I am assuming this is an issue on iTouches as well).

I only tried this while plugged into iTunes, but I imagine that it could work without being connected.

Note: I believe that my issue stems from the "Autosync" option now in iTunes. I don't use this, but I think I somehow accidentally used it for 2 songs (and I could not remove these songs. The funny part is that when I plugged my iPhone into iTunes, the 2 songs I could not delete were not even listed.

Here is what I did.

Go to Settings, and Music and turn on "Show All Music" (note, probably better to do on a WiFi network.

Go to the song that is "sticky". There should be a download-cloud icon next to it -- yes, I know, it is already on your device, but the device isn't actually 100% sure about this. After you download the song, delete it.

Go back to your Settings->Music and unselect the "Show All Songs" (unless you like this feature on).

Hope this helps.

kaws1 says:

Yeah, this is old news. Came in super handy for me once when I was at Kanye West "Yeezus" tour, and I ran out of space on my ip5 and had to delete all my music in an instant to regain space to record more Yeezy footage.

CORYK333 says:

LMFAOOOOOO, bruh..............were you wearing your $100+ KanyeXapc HipHop tshirt????

John Stanley3 says:

THANK YOU, finally, I was going crazy, couldn't delete any songs and was out of disk space, this is the only thing that worked on my ipad3.

Spartacuswines says:

Another great How To! Thanks Alison. Can you do one on "How To Remove the Other on your iPhone"? My "Other" is now taking up 2.42G's on my little iPhone.

Aleksandar Katanovic says:

Neither could I delete all songs from my iPad, even though I did go to settings and deleted all data from music in Usage (as escribed in the introduction of this thread). What helped me to delete all songs from my iPad is that I temporarilly changed the settings in iTunes to manually manage music and videos, and then under Devices (in iTunes), choose your iPad, and the expand it to see Music. In Music, you delete all songs thengo to the Music under devices (in iTunes), and from there delete all songs. (See the Sharescreen image by following the link below.)

http://screencast.com/t/hmi8NAejTuY