Ambient drone pads in all keys for practicing your instrument

Ambient drone pads in all keys for practicing your instrument

Ambient drone pads for practicing your instrument ?

In all major and minor keys

A drone in the major or minor key you are working on is a great way to get more out of your instrument practice. There are lots of drones out there, and these are the best I have found.

Why use a drone?

  1. It helps you play in tune
  2. It’s relaxing – I tend to end up playing better when using these drones!
  3. It lets you relate to the specific key you are working on
  4. It makes you sound better!

Try combining one of the drones with the metronome.

✅ Bookmark this page for easy access so you can focus on practicing on your instrument.


Major keys ambient drones

C major

F major

Bb major (or A#)

Eb major (or D#)

Ab major (or G#)

Db major (or C#)

Gb major (or F#)

B major

E major

A major

D major

G major

Minor keys ambient drones

A Minor

D Minor

G Minor

C minor

F minor

Bb minor (or A# minor)

Eb minor (or D# minor)

Ab minor (or G# minor)

C# minor (or Db minor)

F# minor (or Gb minor)

B minor

E minor

Playing music with an ambient drone

These drones are relaxing and well-balanced, and lasting for an hour each, you will run out of chops before you run out of musical drone. I am using these drones more and more, almost daily discovering new areas where they help me improve my trombone playing. And if they can make a trombone sound better, imagine what the drones could do for other instruments… ? A big thanks to Vishal Bhojane for making these drones, great job!


A drone will help you play in tune. You always have a clear reference and can make adjustments on the fly. Just remember to listen carefully!

As a trombone player, this is a great way to make sure my slide positioning is perfect. I start by making sure that the tuning slide is set properly to make sure that I don’t have to do basic intonation with the slide while playing.

This is just as true and useful for other instruments, such as bowed string instruments and woodwind instruments – or voice. Make sure your instrument is tuned correctly and only make minor changes while playing to get the intonation perfect. Singers can skip tuning their vocal cords before practicing…

Makes practicing relaxing

Regardless of what instrument you play, being relaxed while playing is key. This is where the good sound and flow are hidden. Playing in tune is generally a valued skill, appraised by both fellow musicians and the audience. A drone helps you achieve this, regardless if you play the violin, clarinet, or a brass instrument.

As a trombone player, I know all about the effects tensions in my body have on the sound that comes out of my horn. Staying relaxed (keeping the pulse down and minimizing muscle activity) really opens up my sound and makes warm and overtone-rich. I know this goes for all wind players. String player? Let me know in the comments how being relaxed helps the sound of your instrument or playing.

Relate what you play to a specific key

Relating to a specific key while playing is the, uh, key to improving your fundamental understanding of music. It is one of the greatest ear training methods out there, as long as you remember to actively pay attention to the relationship between the drone and what you are playing.

Even while practicing something as mundane as major scales, this will really help you become a better musician. Hearing how each note in the scale relates to the tonic of the scale at all times is what music is all about! Forget about interval training – the secret sauce is the relationship between notes, not the distance. 

Keys and their flats & sharps

You probably know it by heart, but here is an overview of which and how many accidentals there are in each key.

  • C major / A minor: no accidentals
  • F major / D minor: ♭
  • Bb major / G minor: ♭♭
  • Eb major / C minor: ♭♭♭
  • Ab major / F minor: ♭♭♭♭
  • Db major / Bb minor: ♭♭♭♭♭
  • Gb major / Eb minor: ♭♭♭♭♭♭
  • F# major / D# minor: ♯♯♯♯♯♯
  • B major / G# minor: ♯♯♯♯♯
  • E major / C# minor: ♯♯♯♯
  • A major / F# minor: ♯♯♯
  • D major / B minor: ♯♯
  • G major / E minor: ♯

Now go practice and try out these drones – but beware, they are quite addictive!

Anders-Larson jazz trombone player and founder of


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