Apple Music on Mac AirPlay Error – Certain types of music stop after 14 seconds

Hi to all.

I’m running into a very strange problem that I can’t seem to solve. I’m usually pretty good at solving problems without resorting to the forums, but unfortunately this one has me stumped and I was wondering if anyone else has experienced something similar or knows of a fix.

I’ll try to summarize it as best as I can, but the crash is quite complex and therefore difficult to explain. Please bear with me!

Background

I have a relatively old music library. It is about ten years. In it I have music added from various sources:

  • Songs/albums added via Apple Music
  • Music purchased from the iTunes Store before you subscribed to Apple Music
  • Music that was imported from a CD or downloaded from another source (such as Amazon Music) and then added to my music library. The vast majority are AAC, but there are the odd mp3.

I don’t store music locally on my MacBook Air where this issue was discovered. I have an iCloud music library and iTunes Match, so everything is available in the cloud. I just stream music when I want to listen to it.

Glitch

If I stream music through the MacBook Air’s speakers, it plays fine. This includes music from Apple Music, the iTunes Store, CDs, and more.

But…

If I play my music via AirPlay to, say, HomePod minis or AirPods, then music that comes from Apple Music and iTunes WILL play, but music that comes from CDs, etc. will only play for up to 14 seconds and then suddenly is terminated

The moment I stop AirPlaying, the song plays fine, but it stops if I try to AirPlay it again.

Here’s what I tried to fix the problem, to no avail:

  1. Go to music settings and turn off Dolby Atmos and lossless audio. I’ve also tried it with them on.
  2. Disabling “Spatialise Stereo” and “Head Tracking”, but the problem persists on the HomePod, where these options do not apply
  3. Rebooting
  4. Sign in/out of Apple Music
  5. Try on another network

So far the only thing that has worked is downloading a bad song. It will then play via AirPlay, however I stream my music to the MBA for a reason (the reason for this is that I have a large library of photos that I prefer to store locally and need as much storage as possible).

I also have some screenshots to try to illustrate the problem, as I realize I may not be explaining things as well as I could:

  • Below is a song streaming from Apple Music and playing through my HomePod mini. He plays just great. Below you can see it’s at 1 minute 16 seconds, AirPlayed, and it didn’t stop/play as expected:

  • Here’s another song, this time I bought it from the iTunes store years ago, and it’s streaming from my iCloud Music Library and playing on the HomePod mini. All is well again:

Screenshot 2022-08-13 at 3:27:51 am.png
  • But in this screenshot, I’m playing a song that I imported into iTunes from a CD. It streams from iCloud Music Library, plays through HomePods, but suddenly stops at 14 seconds (and it’s always 14 seconds, never any other time interval):

Screenshot 2022-08-13 at 3.28.19 am.png
  • But if I stop AirPlaying and play through the built-in speakers instead, the song finally plays for the last 14 seconds (until I start AirPlaying again, then it stops):

Screenshot 2022-08-13 at 3:33:14 am.png

I hope this all makes sense, but I really want to find an answer or fix. I know the Apple Music app on the Mac has its fair share of issues, but this one is so confusing that I’m wondering if it’s my problem or Apple’s.

One more thing for the avoidance of doubt; this problem does not occur in iOS. This problem only exists in the infamous Mac Music app (i.e. iTunes with an updated skin).

Thanks if you made it this far!

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