Can you recover deleted songs from Apple Music?

What Happens When You Delete a Song in Apple Music

When you delete a song from your Apple Music library, the song is removed from your library and playlists. However, deleting a song does not necessarily mean it is gone forever.

According to Apple Support, “If you purchased the song or album from the iTunes Store or Apple Music or matched it using iTunes Match, the song or album is still available for download from iCloud.” (

So when you delete a song in Apple Music, it is simply removed from your library locally on that device. The song still exists in your iCloud Music Library. This means you can redownload it to your library again later if you change your mind.

It’s also important to note that if you delete a downloaded song, it will remove the downloaded file to free up space on your device. But the song will still be available for streaming from iCloud, even if you don’t have a local copy.

In summary, deleting a song from Apple Music removes it from your library on that device, but does not necessarily delete it permanently from your iCloud Music Library or purchased content.

Check Recently Deleted Playlist

When you delete a song from your Apple Music library, it doesn’t disappear right away. Instead, Apple Music stores recently deleted songs in a special playlist called Recently Deleted for up to 30 days before permanently removing them.

To recover deleted songs, open the Apple Music app and tap on Library at the bottom. Then select Playlists and scroll down to find the Recently Deleted playlist. Any songs you’ve deleted within the last 30 days will be there.

Tap the 3 dots next to a deleted song and select “Add to Library” to restore it. You can restore multiple deleted songs at once by selecting them all and tapping “Add to Library.” The songs will be returned to your Apple Music collection.

According to Apple Support, the Recently Deleted playlist allows you to “recover individual tracks you might have deleted by accident.” So checking this playlist should be the first step to finding deleted songs in Apple Music before they are gone for good (source).

Restore from iCloud Music Library

If you had iCloud Music Library enabled, the deleted song may still be available in iCloud storage. iCloud Music Library matches the songs in your library to the iTunes catalog. Any tracks that don’t match are uploaded to iCloud so you can access them on all your devices. Even if you delete a downloaded song from your iPhone, the original version stays in iCloud.

To restore the song, open the Apple Music app and go to Library > Songs. If iCloud Music Library is on, you will see a cloud icon next to any tracks stored in iCloud but not downloaded locally. Tap the cloud icon to redownload the song to your device. If you had previously added the song by uploading it to your library, it should restore from iCloud after deletion unless you specifically removed it from your iCloud Music Library.


Redownload Purchased Music

One way to recover deleted songs is to redownload them if you originally purchased them from the iTunes Store or Apple Music. All purchases are stored in your account purchase history.

To redownload purchased songs on an iPhone or iPad, open the App Store app and tap on your profile icon in the top right. Then select “Purchased” to view your purchase history. You can search for the deleted song and download it again for free. This restores the song back into your Apple Music library.

On a Mac, open the iTunes or Music app and click on Account > Purchased to view your purchase history. You can download past music purchases here. Purchased songs can be downloaded again at any time, unless the song has been removed from the iTunes catalog.

So if you accidentally deleted a purchased song, you may be able to recover it by simply redownloading it from your purchase history. Just make sure it was originally bought from the iTunes Store or Apple Music. See: Redownload purchased music – Apple Community

Restore from iTunes or Finder

One way to recover deleted songs from Apple Music is to restore them from a backup in iTunes on Windows or the Finder on Mac. When you sync your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch with a computer, iTunes or Finder will automatically back up the device including any music downloaded from Apple Music.

To restore from a backup and recover deleted Apple Music songs:

  1. Connect your iOS device to your computer via the USB cable.
  2. Open iTunes on Windows or the Finder on Mac. Your device should appear in the sidebar.
  3. Select your device and go to the Summary tab (iTunes) or General tab (Finder).
  4. Click Restore Backup. This will restore your device from the latest backup.

After the restore completes, any purchased or downloaded Apple Music tracks that you had deleted should reappear in your Music library. This process essentially rolls your device back to the state it was in during the last sync with iTunes or Finder, recovering any deleted content in the process.

Just keep in mind that this will only work if you’ve previously synced your device with iTunes or Finder. If you rely on wireless syncing via iCloud and have never connected to a computer, this method won’t help recover deleted music.

Check Other Devices

One way to potentially recover a deleted song from Apple Music is to check any other devices you have signed into your Apple Music account. When you add music to your library in Apple Music, it is synced across all devices signed into that same Apple Music account.

So if you accidentally deleted a song from your iPhone’s Apple Music library, you may still find it in your library on another device like an iPad, Mac, or Apple TV that uses the same Apple Music account. Check the “My Music” or “Library” section in the Apple Music app on those other devices to see if the deleted song is still available there.

If you do find the deleted song on another device, you can download or save it again from that device’s library. This will add it back into your Apple Music account and sync it across your other devices. Just be sure to not delete it again accidentally.

Checking your other Apple Music devices can often recover a mistakenly deleted song, provided you acted quickly enough before it was removed from all your libraries. So it’s a good tip to try if you’ve recently deleted something important.

Contact Apple Support

If you are unable to recover deleted songs through Apple Music’s Recently Deleted playlist or by redownloading purchased music from your account, you can reach out to Apple Support for additional help. Apple’s customer support team may be able to assist with restoring deleted music from a backup or finding other solutions.

To contact Apple Support specifically for help with recovering deleted songs in Apple Music, you can use the Apple Support app on iPhone or initiate a support request online. Be prepared to provide details like your Apple ID, exact song and album names that were deleted, and when the deletions occurred. Support agents can look into your account history and may be able to recover or redownload music that was accidentally removed.

Keep in mind that the longer ago songs were deleted, the less likely Apple Support can restore them. But it’s still worth contacting them, as they have more capabilities than end users when it comes to recovering deleted content.

Use iPhone Data Recovery Software

If you are unable to recover your deleted songs through Apple’s provided methods, your best option may be to use trusted third-party iPhone data recovery software. Companies like CleverFiles, Dr.Fone, and DriveSavers offer software designed specifically to recover lost or deleted data from iPhones and other iOS devices.

This type of software works by scanning your iPhone’s storage for residual data from deleted files. Even when you delete a file, traces of its data often still exist until that storage space is overwritten with new data. Data recovery software can find these traces and reconstruct deleted files. For recently deleted songs, the chances of full recovery are quite high.

The specific process will vary depending on the software used. Typically, you would connect your iPhone to your computer, launch the program, and scan your device. The software then allows you to preview and selectively recover deleted files. Many apps can recover additional data beyond just songs, like messages, contacts, photos, and more.

While paid software costs money, it provides one of the best chances for recovering recently deleted songs from your iPhone if you’ve exhausted all other options. Be sure to use a trusted, reliable software from an established provider for best results.

Prevent Accidental Deletion

The best way to prevent accidentally deleting songs from Apple Music is to enable iCloud Music Library. This will store all of your Apple Music songs in iCloud, so even if you delete a song locally, you can download it again from iCloud. Simply go to Settings > Music and toggle on iCloud Music Library.

You can also disable the option to delete music within the Music app. Go to Settings > Music and toggle off Show Delete Button. This will remove the delete button beside songs, albums, and playlists. However, it’s still possible to delete music using iTunes or Finder on a computer.

It’s recommended to regularly back up your iPhone to either iCloud or iTunes. That way, if you do accidentally delete songs, you can restore from a recent backup and get them back. Backups also save your playlists and library organization. See Apple’s support page for directions on iPhone backups.

Finally, you can use iTunes on a computer to redownload any purchased music. You’ll find your purchase history in your iTunes account. Streaming-only Apple Music songs cannot be redownloaded this way unless added to your iCloud Music Library.

When Deleted Songs Are Gone Forever

In most cases, songs deleted from Apple Music can be recovered as long as you act quickly. However, there are a few scenarios where deleted songs may be permanently erased and irrecoverable:

If you cancel your Apple Music subscription, any downloaded songs that are not also in your iTunes library will be permanently deleted. Apple Music subscriptions allow access to stream and download over 90 million songs, but anything not purchased is removed if you unsubscribe. So if you downloaded a song but did not buy it, then canceled Apple Music, that download would be gone for good.

Songs deleted more than 30 days ago from the Recently Deleted playlist may not be recoverable. The Recently Deleted playlist holds deleted songs for up to 30 days before removing them permanently. If you don’t restore them from the playlist within that window, there is no way to recover them.

If you delete both the iCloud and local copies of a purchased song, it can only be restored if you contact Apple Support within 90 days. Purchased songs are normally safe in your iCloud Music Library even if deleted locally, but if you delete both copies, you only have a limited window of 90 days to recover them by contacting Apple.

In rare cases, a corruption of the Apple Music library can permanently erase songs. While unlikely, data corruption that impacts the cloud library and is not restorable from a backup could mean losing songs for good.

So in summary, cancelling an Apple Music subscription, waiting too long to check the Recently Deleted playlist, deleting both local and iCloud copies of purchases, and very rare data corruption incidents can all potentially lead to unrecoverable song deletions. Acting quickly is key.