Trombone Tattoo Ideas In 2021 – Meanings, Designs, And More

Trombone Tattoo Ideas In 2021 – Meanings, Designs, And More

Are you thinking about your next tattoo? If the answer is yes, then you will need to consider what style you want and where on your body it will be located.

You also need to choose the design of the tattoo and there are a plethora of possibilities. If you are musical then you could think about getting a tattoo of an instrument like a trombone. 

What Is A Trombone?

The trombone is believed to have been created in the middle of the 15th century. Some experts have also suggested that the name is derived from a French word that refers to drawing one’s sword.

However, today the word simply means large trumpet. Part of the reason for this is that both musical instruments share the same ancestor. 


It is a large brass wind instrument with three straight tubing sections that curve around. The instrument ends with a bell that is positioned over the left shoulder of the player.

While the two are similar, a trombone is widely regarded as being more difficult to play compared to a trumpet. This is purely due to the size of the instrument in question. 

The Meaning Of A Trombones Symbolism

As you might expect, it will usually be musicians who decide to get a trombone tattoo. This will usually be a sign or message to say that they play or love this particular musical instrument.

The trombone tattoo may also be chosen to demonstrate an individual’s love or support for a particular musician or artist.


There are various famous trombone players including J. J. Johnson, Wycliffe Gordon, and Glenn Miller. A tattoo like this could be chosen because you love any number of these classic musicians. 

This is similar to how Lady GaGa has a trumpet to show her love for the legend Tony Bennet. This is notable as the tattoo she chose after breaking a promise to her father not to tattoo her right side. 

Getting a trombone tattoo doesn’t necessarily show that you play this musical instrument. It could simply mean that you have music in your life. A lot of people with tattoos like this choose them to show their love for music in general because they like the aesthetic and unique shape of an instrument like this. 

A tattoo of an instrument like this may also have a more personal meaning for the individual.

For instance, you might choose to get a trombone tattoo if your father, mother, loved one, partner or child plays the instrument.

Alternatively, it could be tied to a memory that you have from your childhood of listening to a musician play. There are countless personal meanings that could be tied to it. 

A trombone tattoo may also not be as innocent as it seems. Indeed, an instrument like this can have quite a dark meaning.

It may symbolize the supernatural, darkness, the afterlife, and hell. The sound of this instrument is often described as haunting and those listening imagine images of demons rising from the pits of hell. 

Of course, the meaning behind a trombone tattoo may also be tied to the pieces of music that have been created with this instrument.

For instance, a trombone is used during the opera Don Giovanni to represent the titular character’s descent into hell.

Indeed, the sound of the trombone is used by Mozart to show a supernatural force reaching out that is beyond that of human understanding. 

The trombone is used again in Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony. Through the fourth movement, the instrument is used to show how man is ultimately powerless in the presence of the true forces of nature. 


It’s interesting to note that Beethoven also changed the meaning of the instrument completely. Before he used it for his music, it was classed as a religious or sacred instrument.

The iconic musician was able to ensure it was attached to more abstract symbolism. 

Design Choices  

There are various design choices for this particular type of tattoo. For instance, you could think about going minimal with only a very basic outline.

This can be a single line swirled around to create the shape of the instrument. The only issue is that a lot of people won’t be able to tell what it is.

Alternatively, you might choose to opt for a cartoon style that is more visually appealing and eye-catching. Usually, a tattoo like this will be placed across the forearm and stretch right down the arm.

Another commonplace for this tattoo would be on the wrist or even as part of a larger sleeve. 

Common Colors For Trombone Tattoos 

This tattoo can be created with various colors and shades. Again, some people prefer to keep the design minimal.

As such, they opt for a simple black design with shading as well as white colors to make different parts of the tattoo pop and stand out.


Other people will choose a more realistic golden bronze design that perfectly resembles the instrument itself.

Depending on your skin tone a pure black shaded design can stand out far more. Other people are more creative with their tattoos and add an eclectic array of colors.

This is often used to highlight the belief that music can be seen in different shades. 

Popular Accompanying Design Choices 

Finally, let’s explore some of the accompanying design choices to explore with this tattoo. The obvious choice would be musical notes.

These can be dotted around the instrument or they might be drawn to look as though they are emerging from the bell.

It has also become popular to have flowers in or around the bell. Often this is used to highlight how music can bring peace, love, and tranquility to someone’s life. 


People also often choose trombone tattoos to be drawn next to an outline of their favorite musician.

Or a more peculiar design can see the shape of a trombone combined with a type of swordfish which is inspired by a Tom Waits album “swordfishtrombones.” 

We hope this helps you decide whether a trombone tattoo could be the perfect choice for your next piece of body art.

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