IFR blog > Practice tips > Developing your ear > How to build a strong sense of tonal orientation

How to build a strong sense of tonal orientation

Hi David,

When I'm practicing Seven Worlds, sometimes I lose my tonal orientation and I can't feel the note that is supposed to be acting as the tonal center. So for example note 2 doesn't feel like 'home' anymore. Instead my ear keeps on wanting to resolve to note 1.

Do you have any tips for learning to hear the different environments?

Thanks a lot!

David's response:

Hi Michiel,

Your experience with losing the sensation of the different tonal centers is perfectly normal at first. You're still just getting to know the harmonic environments yourself, so how can you also be responsible for keeping these harmonic environments alive in your own music?

image of IFR Jam Tracks Level 1This is why it's so helpful to work with jam tracks in the beginning. We designed IFR Jam Tracks Level 1: Seven Worlds specifically for this purpose. The jam tracks make each harmonic environment come alive so you can just enjoy exploring the sounds and discovering the melodic possibilities. This is the most effective way to really internalize the sound of each harmonic environment.

Through this experience with the jam tracks, you will develop a deep familiarity with the sound of each harmonic environment. And this is what will enable you to create these harmonic environments yourself in the future. The important thing is to experience the sounds in their proper tonal context so that you can get to know all of these sensations for yourself.

Soloing over the jam tracks is also a lot of fun. So take advantage of this great resource! It will really help you accelerate your ear training and learn to feel the different harmonic environments.

Happy jamming,