How do you add a picture to a song on android?

Adding pictures, also known as album artwork or cover art, to songs on Android can greatly enhance the listening experience. With artwork, songs become more visually engaging and identifiable in your music library. Album art also gives tracks a more polished feel and helps with organization, allowing you to easily find songs by cover instead of just by text.

Displaying artwork while a song plays creates a more immersive multimedia effect. The imagery can complement the mood and theme of the music. Some additional benefits of adding pictures to Android songs include:

  • Making your music collection look more aesthetically pleasing
  • Helping you distinguish between songs and albums at a glance
  • Allowing you to personalize tracks with your own images
  • Providing vital metadata to improve music organization
  • Enhancing the overall listening experience

With the right steps, integrating pictures with songs on Android is straightforward. The visual and organizational perks are well worth the minimal effort involved.


One of the important prerequisites for adding a picture to a song file on Android is having a device running Android 5.0 or later. Android 5.0 (Lollipop) introduced some key features for media management, including support for embedding album artwork directly in MP3 files.

According to 3 Things You Should Know About Cover Art, Android 5.0 was the first Android version to fully support displaying embedded artwork for music files. So you’ll need a device running Lollipop or newer to properly add and view embedded album art.

Older versions of Android do not have full support for viewing artwork embedded into song files. So it’s best to use Android 5.0 or newer if you want the picture to be displayed properly in your music library and music apps.

Find the Picture You Want to Use

When adding a picture to a song file on Android, you first need to find and select the image you want to use. Here are some ideas for pictures to use:

  • Album cover art – Using the official album artwork or a custom designed cover can help the song visually tie in with the rest of the album. See sites like Pinterest for album cover inspiration.

  • Artist image – Using a photo of the artist helps identify the song. Search for press photos, artistic portraits, or other images associated with the musician.

  • Themed image – Selecting an image that fits the song’s mood or lyrics can enhance the listening experience. Look for photos that match the genre or convey the song’s meaning.

The image should be high quality and large enough size to look good on the device screen. Consider images that are at least 1024×1024 pixels. Landscape orientation tends to work best.

Edit the Picture

To edit the picture you want to add to the song, you’ll need a photo editing app. There are many great options available on both Android and iOS, including Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, Snapseed, and Pixlr. Using one of these apps, you can crop the picture to the desired size and aspect ratio, adjust colors and brightness, apply filters, remove imperfections, add text or graphics, and more.

It’s generally a good idea to crop the picture to a similar ratio as the album artwork or square so it fits nicely within the music player interface. Many editing apps have preset crop sizes for popular social media profile pictures, posters, album covers, etc. that you can use. You’ll also want to ensure the resolution is high enough to look good on a phone or tablet screen.

Adjustments like increasing brightness, contrast, and vibrance can make the picture stand out more against the background of the music player. Beware going overboard though – you still want it to look natural. Applying subtle vintage or color filter effects can also give the picture a nice creative flair.

Once you’ve edited the picture to your liking, save a copy of it to your device. Make sure to save it as a widely compatible format like JPG or PNG rather than a proprietary app format.

Add the Picture to the Song File

The easiest way to add a picture to a song file on Android is by using a metadata editing app. Apps like Album Art Grabber allow you to directly embed image files into the metadata of audio files like MP3s. Here’s how to use a metadata editing app to add a picture to a song file:

  1. Open the metadata editing app on your Android device.
  2. Import or find the song file you want to add artwork to. The app should display the song file in its library.
  3. Tap on the song file to open its details screen.
  4. Look for an option to edit or add artwork. This may be under a tab called “Artwork” or “Album Art”.
  5. Select the image you want to use from your device’s storage or take a new photo. Crop or edit the image if needed.
  6. Save the changes. The app will embed the image into the metadata of the song file.

The advantage of using a dedicated metadata editing app is that it handles directly modifying the song file to include the artwork, rather than just displaying the art externally. This way the art you add will remain with the song file if you transfer it to a new device or app.

Update Media Store Database

After adding the picture to the song file, you need to rescan your media folders in order for the changes to take effect. Android keeps track of media files in a database called the MediaStore. When you make changes to your files, like adding album art, you need to update this database so Android recognizes the changes.

To rescan your media folders and update the database, go to your Settings app and find the Storage or Storage & USB option. Go into this menu. Find and select the option to rescan or update media files. This will trigger Android’s media scanner to scan your music folders and update the database with any changes.

You can also use a third party app like SD Rescan Media to quickly rescan folders without going through Settings. Some music player apps may also have a built-in option to rescan media.

After rescanning, you may need to restart your music playing app as well for the changes to show up. Once the MediaStore database is updated, you will see the album art appear in your music player when playing the song.

View Picture in Music Player

Once you have updated the media store database, the picture you added to the song file should now be visible when playing the song in a supported music player app. Many popular Android music apps like Phonograph, BlackPlayer, and Shuttle will automatically display embedded album art while a song is playing.

To ensure your custom album art is showing properly, open your preferred music player app on your Android device and navigate to the song you edited. When the song begins playing, the album art should display along with the music playback controls. If you don’t see the picture, try force closing and reopening the app or restarting your device, as this will refresh the media database.

Some aspects to look for when viewing your custom album art:

  • Art should match what you added and be high quality
  • Art should be centered and take up much of the playback screen
  • Art shouldn’t be distorted, blurry, or pixelated

If your custom picture looks correct while playing the edited song, then you have successfully embedded album art that will persist in your Android music player.


Here are some common issues and solutions for troubleshooting custom album art on Android:

  • Metadata not updating – After changing the album art, the music player app may still show the old artwork. Try clearing the app’s cache and data, or rebooting the device to force a metadata refresh (Source).
  • Image not showing – Double check that the picture file is in a supported format like JPG or PNG. Make sure the image is named in an identifiable way like “album.jpg” and not something generic like “image.jpg” (Source).
  • Wrong artwork showing – If an album displays the wrong cover art, tap the edit icon in your music player and choose the correct image file. You may need to delete the old cached artwork first (Source).
  • Only default art showing – Some Android music apps may override custom album art and only display their built-in default images. Try using a different music player app that allows full custom artwork.

If these common fixes don’t resolve the issue, search online forums or contact app support for further troubleshooting assistance.

Automating the Process

There are several apps available on Android that can automate and streamline the process of adding album art to your music files. This can save you time and effort when working with large music libraries. Some apps to consider are:

Album Art Changer – Automatically finds and downloads album covers from online databases and applies them to your music files based on the metadata. It can work in batch mode to tag multiple files at once.

mp3tagger – Offers advanced automatic and bulk album art tagging. It can identify tracks without art and fetch the correct covers from online databases.

Album Cover Creator – Allows creating custom artwork and applying it to multiple songs at the same time. Useful for adding a consistent image to albums or compilations.

Using automation tools like these can greatly speed up adding album art at scale compared to manually finding and embedding images one at a time. They provide an efficient way to organize and enhance your music library’s visual presentation.


Adding a picture to a song on Android is a straightforward process, though it does require a few steps. The key points are finding or creating the image you want to use, editing it to the proper specifications, adding it to the song’s metadata, updating the media database, and then viewing the result in your music player app.

With the right tools, like MP3Tag or AutomateIt, you can add album art to multiple songs at once to save time. The image file needs to be embedded in the song itself, not just the file name, for it to show up across music apps. JPG or PNG files tend to work best.

The end result is you can customize your music library with album covers, artist images or other pictures that enhance the listening experience. Just be sure the resolution and aspect ratio are optimized for mobile screens. With some tweaking you can get great looking art to go with your favorite songs.

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