Why are some songs missing from my Apple Music library?

If you notice that some songs are missing from your Apple Music library, there are a few potential reasons why this could be happening. Here are some of the most common causes and solutions for missing songs in Apple Music.

The song is not available in your country

One of the most common reasons why a song may be missing from Apple Music is licensing restrictions based on geographic location. The availability of songs can vary greatly by country due to differences in licensing agreements between record labels/publishers and streaming services.

For example, a song may be licensed for streaming in the United States but not in Canada or Europe. So if you try to add or play that song in a “restricted” country, it simply won’t be available in your Apple Music library.

The only solution in this case is to wait and hope that the licensing agreements eventually change to allow that song in your country. You can always check if a song is available by searching directly, and it will let you know if playback is limited.

The artist or label has removed the song

Artists and record labels have the ability to remove songs from streaming services like Apple Music at any time. This usually happens for one of a few reasons:

  • The artist no longer owns the rights to the song
  • There is a rights dispute over the song
  • The artist or label has decided to make the song a “single” or exclusive to another platform

When this happens, the song will simply disappear from your library and Apple Music’s catalog. The only option is to wait and see if it gets added back at a later date once any rights issues are resolved.

The song is not officially available on Apple Music

In some cases, a song may appear in your library but won’t play when selected. This can happen if you added the song manually from your own files rather than streaming it from Apple Music.

Apple Music will store these types of tracks in your library, but they are not officially available on the streaming service. So if you try to play them, you’ll get an error message that the song cannot be played.

To fix this, you would need to properly add the song to your Apple Music library by streaming it from Apple’s catalog. If it’s not available there, then there is no way to properly add it.

Your library hasn’t fully synced

If you just added a new song or album to your Apple Music collection, it can sometimes take a few minutes (or longer) for it to fully sync across devices. The song may already be available on one device but still missing from your library on other devices.

Before assuming the song is missing entirely, give it some time to finish syncing. Force quit and re-open the Music app, or manually initiate a sync in your iOS device’s settings to help speed up the process.

Your subscription expired

If your Apple Music subscription expires, you’ll lose access to stream or download any songs in the Apple Music catalog. Any music tagged as “Apple Music” will show as unavailable until you renew your subscription.

Check to make sure your subscription is still active under your account settings. Re-subscribe to regain full access to the Apple Music library.

You reached your download limit

Apple Music allows you to download songs for offline playback. However, there is a limit on how many songs you can have downloaded at one time. The limit varies based on your subscription level:

Subscription Download Limit
Individual 10,000
Family 15,000 per person
Student 10,000

If you go over the download limit, any additional songs won’t download and saved songs may be removed from your devices. Check your iCloud settings to see how many songs you have downloaded. You may need to remove some to get new songs to download properly.

The song file is corrupted

On very rare occasions, a downloaded or cached song file can become corrupted. This will make the song unplayable. To fix this:

  1. Find the song in your library.
  2. Tap the 3 dots menu.
  3. Choose Delete Download.
  4. Re-download the song.

This will delete the corrupted file and replace it with a good copy from Apple’s servers.

Your iCloud Music Library is disabled

The iCloud Music Library stores your Apple Music collection and syncs it across devices. If it gets disabled, you may see songs go missing because they are not syncing properly. To re-enable:

  1. Go to Settings > [your name] > iCloud.
  2. Turn on iCloud Music Library.

It may take some time for your full library to sync again. You can check progress under Settings > Music.

Songs were removed from your library

Individual songs can be removed from your Apple Music collection, either manually by you or another user that shares your family plan. If you think songs were removed improperly, check:

  • Recently deleted songs in Playlists > Recently Deleted.
  • Other users with access to your Family sharing plan.

You can restore recently deleted tracks or individually re-add any songs that were removed.

You added the song to a playlist only

When you add a song to a playlist in Apple Music, it does not automatically save it to your general music library. Playlist-only songs will disappear when you switch to viewing your main library.

To properly save it, find the song you want under Playlists and tap the + button to add it to your library.

The song is restricted by parental controls

If parental controls are enabled in Family Sharing, certain songs may be restricted from playback. To check:

  1. Open Settings and go to Screen Time.
  2. Tap Content & Privacy Restrictions.
  3. Enter your parent’s Screen Time passcode.
  4. See if any song restrictions have been applied under Content Restrictions.

Ask the family organizer to disable any inappropriate restrictions that may be blocking certain songs in your library.

Your library exceeded the 100,000 song limit

Apple Music libraries have a limit of 100,000 songs. If you reach that limit, any songs added beyond that number will not appear in your library.

The only fix is to remove enough old songs from your library to get back below 100,000. You can see how many tracks are in your library under Account > View Apple ID > Manage Storage.

Your device is not connected to the internet

Your device requires an internet connection to stream songs from Apple Music. If your device loses connectivity due to things like Airplane Mode, no WiFi, or lack of cellular service, you will not have access to Apple’s song catalog.

Make sure your device is connected to the internet, either via WiFi or cellular data. Any missing songs should reappear once you regain connectivity.


Missing songs in Apple Music can be frustrating, but the issue typically stems from one of a few common causes. Checking for things like subscription status, download limits, iOS settings, parental controls, and internet connectivity can help identify and resolve the underlying problem.

In most cases, missing songs are not permanently gone from your library. A bit of troubleshooting to identify the source of the issue will get your music collection back to normal.

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