Talk:Drone music

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Is this a real genre? Is it notable? Genres seem not be covered by Wikipedia:WikiProject Music/Notability and Music Guidelines. Hyacinth 23:51, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)

The genre does in fact exist, although it has a rather small following. I find most of the fans tend to be people in search music that tests the limits of the notion of music (and so do the bands, perhaps I should mention that). Anyway, the bands tour, the labels press records (other major experimental labels, like Kranky, also put stuff out), and some -- particularly Stars of the Lid -- have a surprisingly large following. Here's some anectodal evidence of their existence: something at,, And it is also listed as a genre on the major indie music website epitonic. Admittedly, it is a rather niche genre, but I feel it is a distinct genre (unlike things like "post-math-metal-goth-core" or "neo-baroque-pop-adult-contemporary" and things of that nature); it's just less sought after. If you want to google/research it for more evidence of its existence, search under the term drone rather than dronology, as it is used much more often, though the term dronology is the origin. Anyway, I don't have time at the moment to read the guidelines for genres (I will when I get back from class), but I would like to first say that simply because it is difficult to get information on this genre, its existence is justified. While unpopular, the genre has a great number of potential followers. As anecdotal evidence of this, I do a weekly radio show from 20:00-24:00 CST, and a few weeks ago I had to do some maintainance on the equipment so I brought in the lengthier music tracks I own -- which tend to be dronology. I hadn't played these tracks before because I have otherwise considered the genre to be unfit mass popular consumption, but I got so many calls asking me what this music was and where people could find out more about it and get copies of it that I didn't have time to get the work done I had intended to. The following week, I had more requests for drone and more questions about where to find it. That said, I'll read the guidelines in a couple hours and try to make a more objective evaluation about the legitimacy of its inclusion given my new understanding of those guidelines, but for now I feel it ought bee included. I would appreciate your feedback, though. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Jxn (talkcontribs) 16:16, 10 March 2005
Thanks for the response. Please Wikipedia:Sign your posts on talk pages. Hyacinth 19:24, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)
To rephrase my question, we need to indicate notability in the article: What would let an entirely ignorant reader know that this is a distinct and notable genre, and not just a technique? Of course "drone" shows up a lot more, that is the technique used. Hyacinth 20:37, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Since I'm asking, and you appear knowledgable: What are the limits of this genre? Why are the artists listed at drone not included? Hyacinth 20:37, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Dronology is a genre? It sounds like someone is playing with humour, I guess that drone music is the legitimate term for this style; I will remove the word dronology and replace it with drone music in a few days if none will oppose. Also, the right title for the article could be Drone (music); I mean that putting such parentheses maybe will prevent unuseful edit wars in the future. --Doktor Who 10:49, 6 August 2006 (UTC)
Oppose, with exception noted below:
  • "Dronology" is much in use too (Google it, and please document yourself before calling something humour and deleting it) and thus needs to remain namechecked in the lead. However, you're right that it should probably be removed from the *rest* of the article (except the external link sourcing it, of course). P.S.: I've gone and done it.
  • As a rule of thumb, articles are titled "<genre> music" (such as Ambient music, Hip hop music, Heavy metal music, etc.) so I see no reason to change the current name Drone music again.
  • Besides, Drone (music) is already a different article, following its own correct naming scheme. Please also note that those curvy signs are parentheses, not "commas".
-- 15:51, 6 August 2006 (UTC)
Opps, yes I know those are parentheses or brackets, sorry, when I was about to check my text my O.S. crashed. Anyway, in my humble opinion, dronology literally means "study of drones or Remotely operated vehicles", in other terms a branch of robotics. I do not regard websites (and Wikipedia) as a primary source for the search of the Truth. Anyway, I don't like to take part in discussions regarding musical genres becouse most of web is trash on this matter, so I will no further waste my time. Every web editor can create a new word and post it in some way in a suitable number of sites so that Google will pick it in a few weeks or days. Dronology possibly was the name of an album and then some geniuses decided to create a new "genre"? Just asking, I am not an expert in "music genres" .--Doktor Who 20:18, 6 August 2006 (UTC)


I've put up a generebox on a user subpage for testing and am asking of others can help me fill in the blanks'.

User talk:Tainted Angel/Dronology genrebox test

I will so so as I can, but I'm off the read the guidelines first. Thank you for the assistance.

It needs to be re-edited[edit]

This article is just a mess. Earlier versions of it were surely better than this latter ones. Pink Floyd have never had nothing to do with Ambient music, and this is just an example. The word "drone" has been extensively used even on Brian Eno's 1970s albums only to specify the use of "soundscapes" usually obtained mixing various noises and synths chords, having no melodic progression (its even used on his collaborations works, such as David Bowie's ones). Brian Wilson 23:46, 20 May 2006 (UTC)

"never had nothing"?

The context, the content, the style, the techniques[edit]

please read my contribution at the WikiProject Music genres page. Thank you. Brian Wilson 14:04, 26 May 2006 (UTC)

Article contents[edit]

I copy here a question by Semitransgenic from my "talk page" because it'll be more useful here I think:

Can I ask what is your interpretation of this article? do you believe is it discussing a genre, called drone music or is it discussing music that utilizes drone as a musical component? Semitransgenic (talk) 20:15, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
Drone music/Dronology has been very much a musical research field then a genre by itself since the 1960s (though the names linking various artists or albums certainly came later, as is often the case), but I think the current article indeed has its contents a bit more mixed than that. It looks like some stuff that is only music using drones as components is discussed without clearly saying it's not drone music per se but historically important to discuss the genre itself. Also, non-minimalist/noisy stuff such as drone doom or drone metal seems too much included. So there's work to better shape all that. Can I ask if you know some of the albums listed in Examples? Very representative of the genre and easy to "find" online or from an electronica fan's CDs should be Irrlicht, Zeit, Time Machines, and the Fripp/Eno pieces. (talk) 20:40, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
I asked the question to to see exactly what you feel the angle is here. I'm aware of drone based music, however you want to define it, but the trajectory of this article, the historical perspective, and the various subsections therein, do not appear to be well supported i.e. I do not see citations that support the overall thesis as it is presented here, it's largely a synthetic mish mash of ideas, and it swings from "drone music" as genre, to "drone music" in reference to music that utilities drone based elements. It is primarily for these reasons that I believe it suffers from many of the symptoms of original research. I mean, do we have a cite that explicitly states that one or another person, or group, or whatever, "influenced" the "development of" drone music. And what about the broader ethnomusicological considerations? why are they for the most part ignored? Young et al were influenced by Indian music, and I'm sure dozens of westerns musicians into drone have been influenced by Indian music (or one music or another from one place or another) and have never heard of "The Theater of Eternal Music". we need solid cites for these kinds of claims. Drone is ancient, it's universal, it exists in many music forms across the globe, limiting the sphere of influence to a handful of western musicians seems short sighted, unless what is being discussed here is a specific genre of drone based music that is verifiability traceable to the NY downtown scene of the 1960s and if that is the case we still need solid cites (and i don't mean Allmusic) Semitransgenic (talk) 21:07, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

Yes the article's rather a mess: according to the history, it was started under the title Dronology with no other ambition than documenting the modern genre of music. It was then renamed and swelled from one or more persons with some documentation of ethnic/spiritual drone music (a topic of its own, almost a separate article), early origins or antecedents in 1960s experiments (Young, Velvet, Harrison), and related musics (drone doom, drone metal, noise, whatever) - mostly in a rock magazine tone and no source whatsoever... But this mess is also why I don't really see an "overall thesis" in it, and thus no original research, and why I'd like that you tag the prose with ((or)) where you do feel such points.

As for "the angle", my understanding is that there was a conceptual change in the Western 1960s. Before that, what some musicologists already called "drone music" or "drone-based music" was essentially ethnic and utilitarian, a tool for shamanic, spiritual or religious purposes (bagpipes, Indian drones, organ drones, Byzantine chant and some low-key Gregorian chant, etc.), or late classical music adding a drone layer to give a pastoral feeling. And then in the 1960s, drones and drone music were given a new, hard look in a new, modern context and taken in a new perspective, as a musical research field for art's sake and as the basis for creating non-utilitarian music (on par with modern classical or rock music), either purely drone music (Young) or using drones (Velvet, Harrison). It's not that drone music was invented there, it's that it was taken and used differently (I'd compare it to the changes brought by Picasso: it's not that similar things didn't exist in some African or Oceanic tribes, it's that it had never before been considered a valid pictural way of making paintings and art and depicting reality in the modern Western world). This was in the Western zeitgeist from many sources: Young and Dream Theater, its popularization through the Velvet, but also the time's fascination with Indian music and gurus (popularized by the Beatles and Georges Harrison), etc. That's my answer to your question here, on the talk page; now, for the article side of things, I'm not going to write that and you're right that it'll be tricky to find sources analyzing and comparing the relative direct or indirect weight of each of these source... (And even more from one source to another: for instance, where did the Krautrock crowd of Kraftwerk, Tangerine Dream and Schulze got their drone jones? for all we know, maybe just one of them listened to "Heroin" or a Harrison tune and said to the others, "This would sound even better without the guitar and the singer", but good luck to find a 1970s German interview documenting that.)

Anyway, it seems to me that "work" on this article should first be to source and remove tags (and this should provide additional reference documents in the process); then we'll have something more solid to try and devise a better plan. I suppose that ancient and worldwide ethnic drone music would be its own section, modern dronology another section, and the 1960s turning point would either be a third middle section or the first subsection of dronology. And of course, to then rewrite the lead to reflect this new contents, since the current lead mostly only apply to modern dronology. (talk) 17:11, 17 December 2008 (UTC)

fair enough. regarding the notion of an overall thesis equaling OR what I mean to say is that the choice of headings and the historical analysis arose as a result of the changes you mention and do not appear to reflect a historical perspective that can be found in a verifiable source. Of course that does not mean to say that this is the de facto structure for the article. Personally, I would change it so that it reflects the outline provided in the secondary sources, a number of which are provided in the reference section, but which are not explicitly cited. So in essence, I would suggest reformatting in accordance with the historical perspectives outlined in the main sources. The sections that deal with various niche derivatives should either be removed or made into sub-sections of a section entitled Developments or such like. If I had time I would jump in here and try and address these issues, but right now I don't. Why do you find individual [citation needed] tags preferable to a tag?? Semitransgenic (talk) 11:17, 22 December 2008 (UTC)
I'm not sure what you mean about "secondary sources, a number of which are provided in the reference section, but which are not explicitly cited" since they've always been explicitely cited in the notes (I should know, this article had no references or notes two months ago and I've cited and quoted each source I added since). For "the choice of headings" I've removed all the "Influence from" bits, that'll do for now.
As for the individual ((fact)) or ((or)) tags it's not my preference but the way it is useful, you're supposed to provide them to justify and explain the presence of a big header at the top, and so that editors can know what to fix (and so that readers can know which parts are disputed). Another editor has now removed the top headers, but if you put them again please join specific ((or)) tags in the prose this time. (talk) 19:06, 13 January 2009 (UTC)
It's absolutely stupid and makes no sense: Kyle Bobby Dunn - a young composers whom I respect very much - gets several lines of content whereas established drone artists such as Phill Niblock or Eliane Radigue are just mentioned as if they had just appeared. No way to deal with drone music. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:31, 5 October 2013 (UTC)

Removed subgenres in infobox[edit]

I have removed "None" from the subgenres section in the infobox, because it is redundant. -- (talk) 20:56, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Removed unsourced content[edit]

I have removed the following text from the article:

In the UK, a crop of 1980s rock bands appeared who owed greater or lesser debts to the Velvet Underground, Krautrock, and subsequent droning trends. Cocteau Twins, Coil, My Bloody Valentine, Slowdive, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Ride, Loop (who covered Can's "Mother Sky") Brian Jonestown Massacre (Methodrone album) and Spacemen 3 (who used a text by Young for the liner notes to their record Dreamweapon: An Evening of Contemporary Sitar Music, a live 45-minute drone piece),[1] for instance reasserted the influence of the Velvet Underground and its antecedents in their use of overwhelming volume and hovering sounds, even as they asserted rockish and propulsive rhythms. Sonic Youth uses a large number of guitars with alternate tunings to emphasise the drone in almost all of their songs. They also quite often prolong notes in their song structures to add more droning in their song. Pelt and Charalambides expanded them further still while referring to eighties and nineties noise music, Metal Machine Music-derived performers like Merzbow, C.C.C.C., and KK Null.

And I added this instead:

Cocteau Twins, Coil, My Bloody Valentine, Slowdive, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Ride, Loop (who covered Can's "Mother Sky"), Brian Jonestown Massacre (Methodrone album) and Spacemen 3 (who used a text by Young for the liner notes to their record Dreamweapon: An Evening of Contemporary Sitar Music, a live 45-minute drone piece[2]) reasserted the influence of the Velvet Underground and its antecedents in their use of overwhelming volume and hovering sounds, while Sonic Youth quite often prolong notes to add more droning in their songs.

--Nite-Sirk (talk) 15:31, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

Label or Gendre?[edit]

Everything is already invented in music. Besides, machines will compose music from now on, providing enough variation in sound, time and notes. Anyway, as long as people consume music, or whatever it’s called music, they’ll be music distribution companies and maybe authors and interpreters. In order to well sell music, music distribution companies must keep innovating at least labels. Again, all possible combinations of notes, attitudes, sounds, instruments are already invented. The only thing companies have to do to keep selling is: 1º Advertise same music styles with new labels to make it appear new. 2º Expect young people to be ignorant and in general society to forget where we come from and where we go. We come from exactly here and we go nowhere else, since we have the same wars as we had in the past and we’ll have in the future. I listen to the music and I play music to enjoy and that’s the point of it. I don’t need labels or companies to tell me what should I like or buy. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:18, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

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  1. ^ Spacemen 3, Dreamweapon: An Evening of Contemporary Sitar Music, Sympathy for the Record Industry SFTRI 211, 1993 CD re-issue, liner notes
  2. ^ Spacemen 3, Dreamweapon: An Evening of Contemporary Sitar Music, Sympathy for the Record Industry SFTRI 211, 1993 CD re-issue, liner notes