The Drone is a tool which enables a variety of performance techniques. In “Sustain Mode” the drone notes play in the background, like those of a bagpipe (more details below). In “Retrigger Mode” the Drone allows a technique inspired by guitar “tapping” popularised by legendary guitarist Eddie Van Halen (check out this video). Access to the two modes is made readily available via the button in QuickPanel 2.
Whenever one or more notes is being played via the Bloom, the Drone Control will light up. If you press it at this point, the notes will “lock” into the Drone as indicated by the icons.
When a note is first locked in the Drone, you’ll notice that the bottom Corner Buttons flip over to reveal up/down arrows. These allow you to shift the notes locked in the Drone up or down own along the notes in the currently active scale.
To release the locked notes, simply drag them out of the Drone Control.
Visually, the Drone Control shows a maximum of 8 notes but in reality more can be added.
Sustain Mode — When in Sustain Mode, the Drone works kind of like the drone of a bagpipe. Notes that you lock in the Drone sustain in the background while you play other notes over top. The Drone notes will sustain until they are released by dragging them out of the Drone Control. (Keep in mind, though, that your synth/sample might stop producing sound depending on the nature of the patch).
Retrigger Mode — In Retrigger Mode, notes locked into the Drone will sustain only until you play another note via the Bloom. At this point, the Drone notes will temporarily stop (Note Off MIDI message sent), but will resume (a new Note On) when you release the note played via the Bloom. This allows for rapid melodic sequences of notes to be played, potentially spanning a large note range.
Drone Quick Swipe
The Global Settings include an option to enable Drone “Quick Swipe Mode”. When enabled, notes can be locked in the Drone via a small downward swipe on the Bloom. A small upward swipe on the Bloom clears the locked notes.