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"No songs by [obscure band]!?" - Atruejedi's Eclectic Requests - Now Recruiting! (updated 2/19/20)

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Click above to read a special announcement! Work with me to bring five of these songs to life!


Now that I have the power, I've decided to alter my parameters. When it comes to artists with little or no representation, this thread will continue to follow the same rules and standards I've had since its inception... but now that I have more skills, abilities, and clout, I will be expanding the selection of artists to include those that actually do have songs in Rock Band, because I actively want to collaborate with artists to chart additional specific songs. Those entries will be specially marked so you know my intentions.

Wishlist Entries:

The following artists are already moderately represented in Rock Band with some combination of songs either on-disc, as official DLC, or as customs. I am actively pursuing the creation of the additional songs featured in the following entries.

The Fratellis - Alternative Rock/Scottish (added 1/15/18) - (Imposters (Little by Little) and Whistle for the Choir now available!)
Kasabian - Alternative Rock/Punk/Psychedelia/British (added 1/15/18) ----------------------- (Days Are Forgotten now available!)
Mother Mother - Indie/Punk/Folk/Dual Vocalists/Female Vocals/Canadian (added 1/15/18) - (Back in School now available!)

Nerf Herder - Rock/Punk/Indie (added 1/31/19)
The Presidents of the United States of America - Alternative Rock (added 1/15/18) -------------------- (So Lo So Hi now available!)

The Raconteurs - Rock (added 8/4/18)

Social Distortion - Rock/Punk (added 1/31/18)
Soul Asylum - Alternative Rock (added 1/25/18) - (Runaway Train, April Fool, Closer to the Stars (live) and Misery now available!)



I can pitch the vocals and harmonies for any of these suggestions.

I don't understand drums, so I can't really describe them well.

If you have a good description for a song, send it to me and I'll quote you in the post!

Quick links to band-centric posts in this thread (now alphabetized and tagged based on the suggested songs!):


American Aquarium - Rock/Indie/Country/Singer-Songwriter (added 2/19/20)
April Smith and the Great Picture Show - Indie/Singer-Songwriter/Female Vocals (added 7/20/17)
Argent - Progressive Rock/English (added 8/3/17)
The Arkells - Indie/Rock/Canadian (added 7/9/17) ------------------------------------------- (Oh, The Boss is Coming now available!)
Band of Skulls - Rock/Indie/British/Dual Vocalists/Female Vocals (added 7/17/17) - (Sweet Sour & Black Magic now available!)
Bell X1 - Alternative Rock/Irish (added 8/22/17)
Blitzen Trapper - Folk/Rock/Country/Western (added 6/29/17) ----------------------------------- (Black River Killer now available!)
Brendan Benson - Singer-Songwriter/Indie/Rock/Country/Dual Vocalists/Female Vocals (added 7/12/17)
Broken Bells - Indie/Soul (added 1/13/18)
Cat Stevens - Singer-Songwriter/Folk (added 1/13/18)
Civilian - Indie/Alternative Rock (added 7/20/17)
The Clarks - Rock (added 7/8/17) ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Cigarette (live) now available!)
Cold War Kids - Rock/Indie (added 8/22/17)
Counting Crows - Alternative Rock/Dual Vocalists (added 8/31/17)
Damion Suomi & The Minor Prophets - Singer-Songwriter/Folk/Rock (added 8/11/17)
Dawes - Indie/Folk/Rock (added 6/29/17) ------------------------------------------------------------------ (Things Happen now available!)
Delta Spirit - Rock (added 7/8/17)
The Dirty Guv'nahs - Rock (added 8/11/17)
Dishwalla - Alternative Rock (added 7/12/17) --------------------------------------------------- (Charlie Brown's Parents now available!)
Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeroes - Indie/Folk/Dual Vocalists/Female Vocals (added 7/12/17) (Home now available!)
Eli Paperboy Reed - Soul (added 8/3/17)
The Fighting Jamesons - Alternative Rock/Irish (added 8/3/17)
First Aid Kit - Indie/Western/Dual Vocalists/Female Vocals (added 7/17/17) -------------------- (My Silver Lining now available!)
Fitz & The Tantrums - Indie/Soul/Dual Vocalists/Female Vocals (added 7/17/17) ---------------- (MoneyGrabber now available!)

Florence + The Machine - Indie/Female Vocals/English (added 8/12/17)
Fly Golden Eagle - Alternative Rock/Indie/Psychedelia (added 8/3/17)
Fountains of Wayne - Indie/Alternative Rock (added 7/12/17) ------------------------------------- (Traffic and Weather now available!)
Frank Turner - Singer-Songwriter/Folk/Rock/English (added 7/12/17) --------------------- (Peggy Sang the Blues now available!)

The Front Bottoms - Rock/Pop/Punk/Indie/Singer-Songwriter (added 2/3/19)
Gin Blossoms - Alternative Rock/Singer-Songwriter/Country (added 8/3/17)
Gogol Bordello - Punk/Folk/Indie/Rock/European/Gypsy (added 7/12/17)
Grace Potter & The Nocturnals - Singer-Songwriter/Rock/Indie/Female Vocals (added 8/22/17)
Guster - Indie/Alternative Rock/Dual Vocalists (added 6/29/17) ------------------------------------------------- (Satellite now available!)
Hard-Fi - Indie/Alternative Rock/British (added 6/29/17) ---------------------------------------------------- (Cash Machine now available!)
Harvey Danger - Alternative Rock/Singer-songwriter (added 8/31/17; "The Show Must Not Go On" not on Spotify)
Hieroglyphics - Hip-Hop/Soul/Dual Vocalists/Female Vocals (added 7/17/17)
Hollerado - Indie/Rock/Canadian (added 7/20/17)
Ike Reilly - Singer-Songwriter/Rock/Dual Vocalists/Country (added 7/8/17)
The Interrupters - Punk/Female Vocals (added 7/7/17)
J. Roddy Walston & The Business - Rock (added 7/8/17)
The Jam - Rock/British (added 8/31/17)
Jenny Owen Youngs - Singer-Songwriter/Indie/Female Vocals (added 8/11/17)
Joel Plaskett Emergency - Alternative Rock/Canadian (added 8/11/17) - (Fashionable People and Extraordinary now available!)
July Talk - Alternative Rock/Canadian/Dual Vocalists/Female Vocals (added 7/4/17) -------------- (Picturing Love now available!)
Jurassic 5 - Hip-Hop/Dual Vocalists (added 1/11/18) ------------------------------------------------------ (What's Golden now available!)
Kaiser Chiefs - Indie/Rock/British (added 8/31/17; "Coming Up For Air" not on Spotify) (Everyday I Love You Less and Less now available!)
Larry & His Flask - Punk/Folk/Indie/Alternative Rock (added 7/8/17)
Less Than Jake - Punk/Ska (added 8/31/17)
The Libertines - Indie/Rock/Punk/Dual Vocalists/English (added 8/3/17)
Lyrics Born - Hip-Hop/Soul (added 7/17/17)

Marina and the Diamonds - Singer-Songwriter/Pop/Female Vocals (added 2/18/19)
Matt Mays & El Torpedo - Rock/Singer-Songwriter/Canadian (added 8/22/17)
The Mother Hips - Rock (added 8/31/17)
The Mowgli's - Indie/Dual Vocalists/Female Vocals (added 8/25/17)
Nick Lowe - Singer-Songwriter/English (added 7/20/17)
Noah and the Whale - Indie/British (added 7/20/17) ---------------------------------------------------------- (5 Years Time available here)
Operation Ivy - Punk (added 7/8/17)
The Real McKenzies - Rock/Punk/Canadian/Scottish (added 8/25/17)
The Record Company - Rock (added 7/12/17)
The Redwalls - Indie/Rock (added 7/7/17)

The Refreshments - Rock (added 4/22/19)
The Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band - Indie/Country (added 7/8/17)
Roman Candle - Indie/Rock (added 7/6/17; "You Don't Belong To This World" not on Spotify)
The Roots - Hip-Hop/Dual Vocalists (added 7/8/17) -------------------------------- (What They Do and The Seed 2.0 now available!)

Sarah Shook and the Disarmers - Country/Singer-Songwriter/Female Vocals (added 1/28/19)
Sam Roberts Band - Rock/Canadian (added 8/11/17) - (We're All in This Together and Streets of Heaven (Promises, Promises) now available!)
Shovels & Rope - Folk/Dual Vocalists/Female Vocals (added 7/20/17) -------- (The Devil is All Around and Evil now available!)
Spoon - Indie/Alternative Rock (added 8/24/17)

The Struts - Rock/British (added 2/3/19) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Kiss This now available!)
The Trews - Rock/Canadian (added 8/22/17) ------------------------- (Tired of Waiting and Ishmael & Maggie (live) now available!)
Tom Morello: The Nightwatchman - Rock/Folk/Singer-Songwriter/Country/Dual Vocalists (added 8/22/17)
The Vaccines - Indie/Punk/Alternative Rock/English (added 7/7/17) ------------------------------- (Post Break-Up Sex now available!)
The Vandals - Punk (added 7/12/17) -------------------------------------------------------------------- (My Girlfriend's Dead now available!)
The Wallflowers - Alternative Rock/Dual Vocalists (added 8/31/17)
Warren Zevon - Singer-Songwriter/Rock (added 8/25/17) ------------ (Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner now available!)
William Elliott Whitmore - Folk/Singer-Songwriter (added 8/3/17)
White Denim - Rock/Indie (added 8/11/17)
The Wombats - Indie/British (added 6/29/17) ------------------ (Moving to New York and Your Body is a Weapon now available!)
The Zutons - Indie/Rock/British (added 8/22/17; "Pressure Point" and "You've Got a Friend" not on Spotify)

(Don't agree with the tags? Have a suggestion? Hit me up!)

Hi everybody. You might recognize me from the comments sections of the custom songs database. I'm often scouring it and leaving feedback and thanks for what these dedicated authors have shared with us. They selflessly sacrifice their time and effort to bring us immeasurable amounts of musical joy, but I'm insatiable. I always want more songs by more artists, and after a few months of continually remaining surprised there were literally no songs [or very, very few] by a few of my absolutely favorite bands, I've decided to make the case for five innumerable bands to have representation in Rock Band by offering three* solid suggestions for each artist. I'll try to have each suggestion be from a different album, but, as you'll see, sometimes that doesn't work out. Ideally, I'd love to see all 15 200+ songs created as customs, but I wanted to offer a variety of songs and styles to appeal to every author's taste. I want to be as thorough, passionate, and persuasive as possible. I'd be pleased as punch if each artist listed here got even one custom created. Hell, even if only one of these 15 [original] suggestions got made. Beggars can't be choosers, after all.

*As you'll see, I violate this rule often, for better or worse. Whoops.

A little about my Rock Band philosophy: When I play alone, I'm sober. When I play with friends, I drink. The more friends and proof and volume (audio and liquid), the better. I try to avoid slow-paced songs when with friends and tend to go more to the upbeat anthems and feel-good fun-time jams. While I often do not play with a completely full band, I do like to switch up my instrument playing between expert guitar, expert bass, and expert/pro keys (but I'm awful with any type of keys, lolz). I never drum and I always harmonize (if I can concentrate on strumming and singing!) if I'm not already assigned to lead vocals. Also, I'm not a musician. I don't play any instruments, but I did choir and musicals in high school. I go to a lot of concerts. I sometimes go out for karaoke, but I would rather stay in and play Rock Band with friends to get my fix. Now that you know how I play and what I aim for, here is The List™:

Edited by Atruejedi
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A CALL TO ARMS! Click above to read a special announcement! Work with me to bring five of these songs to life!   Wishlist Entries: The following artists are already moderately represented in Ro



Background: I've seen Guster three times. The first time was at a crumby indoor venue. It was awesome. The second time was in a fancy indoor venue with seating. More awesome. The third time was in a public park with a flask in my back pocket. It was most awesome. They are incredibly talented musicians who never disappoint live.

The Obvious Choice:

Available now! Download here

Album: Ganging Up On The Sun (2006)

You can listen for yourself, but here is my run-down of it musically (from a non-musician, as I said):

Vocals: Beautiful melody, lovely lyrics, soothing background harmonies.
Guitar: Acoustic chords to strum. Some fingering.
Bass: Solid bass part. Nothing too complicated.
Drums: I know nothing about drums, but it sounds pretty basic.
Keys: There's a neat synthesizer part that pops up at times. Kind of haunting and creepy.
Miscellaneous: Ending fades out, but nothing too messy.

This Could All Be Yours
Album: Easy Wonderful (2010)

Stylistically different from above. A good romp live!

Vocals: Pretty basic. Nice background harmonies, as is typical of Guster. Some good oh-oh-oh's.
Guitar: Acoustic chord-fest. Neat solo.
Bass: Relatively simple bass part.
Drums: I know nothing about drums, but it sounds pretty basic.
Keys: I don't hear any. Maybe chart the slide guitar to this.
Miscellaneous: Sounds driven by the kick-drum. Very upbeat. Clear ending. Fun refrain for a group of drunks.

Airport Song
Album: Goldfly (1997)

This is a staple of their live performances, and a definite crowd pleaser. Plus, it has BONGOS!

Vocals: Two vocalists doing separate parts. Very cool!
Guitar: Acoustic strumfest, per usual.
Bass: Basic. Haw.
Drums: Did you not see above? BONGOS!
Keys: Some synthesizer.
Miscellaneous: This song is INTENSE. Especially live. Watch that Conan O'Brien link (and notice they skip the bass for this performance). Bonus points if you chart the ping-pong balls to tambourine at the end... PLEASE! :D


The Personal Favorite:

Ramona (live)
Album: Keep It Together (2003)

This tune just makes me melt.

Vocals: Gorgeous.
Guitar: A couple of different sections to chart.
Bass: Gentle.
Drums: A normal kit and more bongos!
Keys: Strings.
Miscellaneous: I love the live version of this song, so one of the many renditions would be my choice. Probably from Keep It Together Live.

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Blitzen Trapper

Background: I've seen these guys live once and it was a barn-burner. They have a massive catalogue, but their most well-known song, Furr, probably isn't suitable for Rock Band (it opens with 75 seconds of guitar and vocals only...). [Edit: it's now an Obviouser choice!] Check it out on your own if you'd like, because it is a fantastic tune. I heard a dude named Damion Suomi cover it and that's how I discovered them. So, if not Furr, what is The Obvious Choice?


The Obvious Choice:

Black River Killer

Available now! Download here

Album: Furr (2007)

Well, the sheriff let me go with a knife and a song
So I took the first train up to Oregon
And I killed the first man that I came upon
'Cause the devil works quick, you know it don't take long...

A murder ballad that rings of an abandoned Bob Dylan tune. Simultaneously haunting and beautiful. I dare you to not be captivated. A personal favorite of mine.

Vocals: Pretty easy and predictable verses and refrains. Simple harmonies in the background and ooo's as well.
Guitar: Sounds straight-forward but probably a bit challenging.
Bass: Nothing difficult.
Drums: I know nothing about drums, but it sounds pretty basic.
Keys: Some synthesizer.
Miscellaneous: Fades out at the end.


The More Obvious (yet very late) Choice:


Album: Furr (2007)

And now my fur has turned to skin
And I've been quickly ushered in
To a world that, I confess, I do not know...

No explanation needed. An epic tale of a man who turns into a wolf and back into a man, finding love along the way. I think?

Vocals: Gorgeous vocals, and a delightful, adorable story.
Guitar: The workhorse. Guitar and vocals, as mentioned above, are the only featured instruments for the first 75 seconds.
Bass: ...actually, I don't there is a bass part. Well, crap. Either that, or it's just always playing when the drummer is stomping. See below.
Drums: Stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp...
Keys: Harmonica!
Miscellaneous: Clean ending.





Album: American Goldwing (2011)

Don't cha let ol' Fletcher take the wheel tonight
His heart's grown cold an' this old dirt road runs rough and ragged to a terrible height...

This sounds like a modern-day Lynyrd Skynyrd song to me. A good ol' ditty 'bout drinkin' too much. Fun and somber and optimistic at the same time.

Vocals: I want to sing those harmonies. Badly.
Guitar: Guitar doesn't sound hard, but I think it sounds really fun in its simplicity.
Bass: Bass sounds pretty interesting to my untrained ear.
Drums: I know nothing about drums, but it sounds pretty basic.
Keys: A nice piano accompaniment.
Miscellaneous: Nice, clean ending.


Thirsty Man

Album: VII (2013)

You know I've seen the mountains
And the flatlands too
I've seen all these city streets
But I still go out searching for you...

A western-style song about lost love. I melt.

Vocals: Nothing hard. Nice harmonies throughout.
Guitar: Some nice pickin'.
Bass: I can already feel myself jammin' to this bass part.
Drums: I know nothing about drums, but it sounds pretty basic.
Keys: A neat synth solo. Could even put the harmonica here if you're an overachiever.
Miscellaneous: Simple ending, thankfully.

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Background: I haven't seen these guys live, and they sort of disappeared in the past few years, after three great albums. Fingers crossed for a fourth and a tour of the States...


The Obvious Choice:

Cash Machine

Available now! Download here

Album: Stars of CCTV (2005)


Perhaps my favorite song about accidental pregnancy. This was a big hit, and I'm shocked Harmonix never released it as a single.


Vocals: Catchy. Good harmonies.
Guitar: Repetitive chords.
Bass: I feel like the bass drives this song.
Drums: I know nothing about drums, but it sounds pretty basic.
Keys: Sounds like there's some synthesizer buried deep down in there. Or a harmonica could be charted here for overachievers.
Miscellaneous: Crisp ending, nothing messy.



Suburban Knights

Album: Once Upon a Time In The West (2007)


A nice anthem for urban youth.


Vocals: Great hey-ey-ey harmonies during the refrain.
Guitar: Straightforward guitar part.
Bass: Interesting bass.
Drums: I know nothing about drums, but it sounds pretty basic.
Keys: There's a bit of synthesizer here, but also some strings. Your choice.
Miscellaneous: Crisp ending, nothing messy (again).



Killer Sounds

Album: Killer Sounds (2011)


The title track and final track of their latest (last?) effort. Stylistically, pretty different from the above. Kind of sappy, but beyond being a great song, I love it for personal reasons as well.


Vocals: Love 'em. Nice harmonies for a group, as well.
Guitar: Basic.
Bass: Interesting.
Drums: I know nothing about drums, but it sounds pretty basic.
Keys: Prominent piano part.
Miscellaneous: The ending fades out with "cool" vocals, but might not be too tricky to address.

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The Wombats


Background: One of the first concerts I ever attended. Insane band. Three dudes bouncing all over the stage, with the bassist climbing on top of a stack of amps into the corner during the encore... definitely made me a concert addict! They've really moved away from straight up rock 'n' roll as they've released more albums, which is why I selected two songs from their debut. Unfortunately, while I love their sophomore album, This Modern Glitch, it's so electronic that it didn't seem to fit well with Rock Band. So, rule broken. Deal with it. B)


The Obvious Choice:

Moving To New York

Available now! Download here

Album: The Wombats Proudly Present: A Guide to Love, Loss & Desperation (2007)

I put one foot forward and ended up 30 yards back
Am I losing touch or am I just completely off the track?


It really was a toss-up between this and the first runner-up. Both are insane and were quite popular. Surprised the Wombats never had a song or two released by Harmonix. Their loss could be our gain! ;)


Vocals: Nice "ooo" harmonies. Could have some claps on tambourine.
Guitar: Sounds pretty intense. Varied!
Bass: INTENSE. Rockin'!
Drums: I know nothing about drums, but it sounds pretty intense. Definitely drives the song. Sounds like WORK.
Keys: Synthesizer is prominent near the ending.
Miscellaneous: The theme here is intensity. Glad it has a crisp, clear ending. Could be considered a Christmas song!


Runner-up (or other Obvious Choice, up to you):

Let's Dance to Joy Division

Album: The Wombats Proudly Present: A Guide to Love, Loss & Desperation (2007)

Let's dance to Joy Division
And celebrate the irony
Everything is going wrong
But we're so happy


I'm shocked Harmonix never released this song as a single. This was their smash hit.


Vocals: An anthem with appropriate background singers on harmonies.
Guitar: Similar to above.
Bass: See above.
Drums: See above.
Keys: A bit of synthesizer.
Miscellaneous: A nice, crisp ending. You don't have to chart the laughing ;)



Your Body is a Weapon

Available now! Download here

Album: Glitterbug (2015)

Your body is a weapon, love
And it makes me wanna cry
My body is a temple of doom
Doomed not to be by your side


Honestly, this might be my favorite Wombats song. Those bastards teased it years before it came out, and it drove me crazy waiting for the album. It was worth the wait, but, again, it's such an evolution from their debut sound. Not that that's bad! I dig both styles.


Vocals: Pretty simple. Cute. Fun background shouts.
Guitar: Sounds buried at times, but it's there. A great version can be seen here if that helps with the charting.
Bass: Sounds interesting enough.
Drums: I have no opinion on drums, which you should have figured out by now.
Keys: Sounds like there's some subtle synthesizer in there, especially during the bridge before the wacky guitar solo.
Miscellaneous: Nice crisp ending featuring piano.

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Songs planned or already in the works:

Things Happen (Available now! Download here)

Background: Finally saw these guys live recently in a public setting, flask in tow. Marvelous. Especially their performance of the two songs I'm not going to request. I can hear Dawes fans already: "Why didn't you request A Little Bit of Everything? What about All Your Favorite Bands!?" Both of those songs are two of my absolute favorite Dawes songs, but oftentimes they don't have much going on. Trust me, I'd love to see them in Rock Band, but I don't want to bore players with long stretches of nothing to do. That being said... if those two songs happen to be created by the authors here, I will not complain. Actually, the opposite: I will gush. I am selfless, for I have tried to keep the happiness of the entire band in mind. So! Without those two tunes, what is the Obvious Choice?

The Obvious Choice:

Time Spent in Los Angeles

Album: Nothing Is Wrong (2011)

One of my favorite Dawes songs, beyond the two mentioned above. This one would totally fit in Rock Band, even if it's a bit slow for my Rock Band tastes. Sometimes a favorite tune can surpass the limitations of the video game, I guess :)

Vocals: Lovely harmonies.
Guitar: Soothing.
Bass: Yawn.
Drums: They're there. Pretty basic.
Keys: Is that a pipe organ? Awesome!
Miscellaneous: Nice ending, easy to chart.


If I Wanted Someone

Album: Nothing Is Wrong (2011)

I know, I broke the rule about the same album again, and this is the track immediately following the Obvious Choice on this album. But what a good song. Again, this typically wouldn't be my ideal style for a song in Rock Band, but the quality of the writing and composition just make it more fun :) . A sort-of love song burning underneath with some type of anger. It's kind of unsettling if you listen closely. This is an anthem when you see 'em live. It's bad-ass.

Vocals: Beautiful melody and accompanying harmony.
Guitar: Sounds really interesting and varied, actually. Nice solo!
Bass: Basic but not too boring.
Drums: They're there. Sound pretty simple.
Keys: There's a piano part!
Miscellaneous: Nice, clean ending for charting.


One Of Us

We're All Gonna Die (2016)

I won't pretend to really understand this song, but something about it is compelling, especially live. At first, I thought it was really, really stupid. And it's definitely not one of my favorite songs. Plus, for Dawes, it just sounds different from their usual fare, particularly because of that distorted guitar.

Vocals: Straight-forward. Nice opportunities for harmonies.
Guitar: Doesn't sound hard. Opportunities for variation.
Bass: Doesn't sound hard.
Drums: I know nothing about drums. Doesn't sound hard, though.
Keys: I don't hear any, but they could be buried in there somewhere.
Miscellaneous: Crisp ending.

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Check out this thread i case you didn't, since it has The Wombats song in there, a different one though.


About 'This Modern Glitch': i think the song 'Techno Fan' would've keep all the instrument players entertained enough throughout the song (can't actually remeber any songs off this album, gotta re-listen).


Great thread overall. Definitely a landmark of this sub-forum.

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Thank you for the kind words, everybody! Go big or go home, I always say. I just hope the effort converts some of you into fans, or, even better, gets some tunes charted... ;) . All of these bands have sooo much great material. If you find any of them interesting, just give their Top 10 popular songs on Spotify a proverbial spin and see if you dig 'em!



Check out this thread i case you didn't, since it has The Wombats song in there, a different one though.


GAH! WHAT!? Why isn't this in the database!? Downloading now! Thanks for the info! :o


[Edit] Just played it. Guitar is very well charted, but there are no vocals and the audio is REALLY loud... I wonder if somebody would want to tune this up. The author, RedVIII, no longer appears active (February). If the vocals were charted, I could pitch them.

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Thank you for the kind words, everybody! Go big or go home, I always say. I just hope the effort converts some of you into fans, or, even better, gets some tunes charted... ;) . All of these bands have sooo much great material. If you find any of them interesting, just give their Top 10 popular songs on Spotify a proverbial spin and see if you dig 'em!



GAH! WHAT!? Why isn't this in the database!? Downloading now! Thanks for the info! :o

Yeah, if you wait like a week or two, I can get a WIP at least of Satellite done. I have no clue as to why HMX never sought out the opportunity to make it DLC. It's a great song. Also, I might be able to chart pro keys for it. Depending on what I chart on keys.

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That's a pretty dope request list. I'm surprised no one has done Satellite from Guster either, I love that song. Very surprised you have Hard-Fi up there. I dig them a lot. If I were going to do a song from them it would probably be Stop. That song shreds, although your selections are pretty tasty as well.

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So here's a WIP of Satellite by Guster. Thanks to Chainsaw Octopus for the drum chart which I made small adjustments to. Also includes a keys part. I think I can end up charting pro keys eventually. Guitar and Bass might be difficult to chart so if there's anyone else who wants to help let me know. But vocals is going to be fun. It's always fun to chart.



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July Talk


Background: Happy birthday, 'Merica! Today is July 4th, so I thought I'd update this post to request July Talk... even though they're Canadian :haw:. This post is somewhat recycled, because it was sent to MrPrez during our discussion of what artists and songs I thought his Canada 150 project could include. Because of that, it breaks the Rule of Three I established in the first post, only because I didn't have the heart to cut my four suggestions for him down to three. For this band, I picked tunes that all sound pretty different to me, at least as an avid listener. Of the list, I think only The Garden was a single/hit. When choosing, I really tried to be unbiased; the songs that are my favorites or singles didn't seem to translate well into having a fun factor (notably Push + Pull and Picturing Love [Now available! Download here], which are fantastic songs which you should listen to immediately). I've seen this band live twice and talked to them once after a show. They are amazingly friendly and humble people and I cannot stress what an incredible live act they are. Go see them! They deserve their Juno! Now, without further adieu...


The Obvious Choice:
The Garden
Album: July Talk (2012)

Just a bad-ass jam. I don't think this one needs an introduction or explanation. It was a popular single, as far as I know. Has a kind of cowboy cadence to it, which is nice. Fades into the second track and single, Guns + Ammunition, from the same album, but I'm not sure how fun that would be in-game. Still, it would be cool to have them connected as a single "medley" including both of them... pipe dreams, eh? ;). Also, pretty sure this was a single in 2015, which seems really late when the album came out so much earlier. I didn't hear it until 2014.


Vocals: An angel and a devil. Not really a duet, but the contrast between their styles and voices is just fascinating.
Guitar: Variety! A bit of all styles here, including a solo.
Bass: Pretty standard, although it might be a bit more tricky than I anticipate...
Drums: Sounds like a workout.
Keys: I don't hear anything.
Miscellaneous: Fades out, but on the album it leads directly into the following track, Guns + Ammunition.


Now I Know
Album: Touch (2016)


This song wasn't even on my radar when I began compiling my list of suggestions, but I think it could be really fun in Rock Band. It's the only suggestion from their second album, which had very good singles (Picturing Love and Push + Pull) that I don't think would be much fun to play compared to this.


Vocals: Definitely focuses moreso on the female side of vocals this time, which is awesome. I feel empowered! But he can sure rip those vocals during the second half!
Guitar: Guitar sounds pretty bad-ass, but not difficult.
Bass: Pretty forgettable compared to everything else happening here.
Drums: Does that cowbell get charted here? :D
Keys: Something is happening for this slot, but I can't tell what the hell it is. It kind of makes a "Hee-HAW" sound during the refrain. Probably a synth of some sort.
Miscellaneous: Crisp, abrupt ending.


Don't Call Home
Album: July Talk (2012)


Yes, this is the second choice from this album. They only have two records, and I gave MrPrez four suggestions! I'm sorry! Definitely one of my favorites, though. I hope you'll dig it as well.


Vocals: The chance for complexly charted 3-part harmonies with one male lead, one female lead, and one female backup singer.
Guitar: Chords, some slide. Nothing special, but still would keep a player busy.
Bass: Bass sounds interesting to me, as an avid plastic bass player.
Drums: Drums sound pretty easy yet pretty fun to non-drummer me.
Keys: Some keys at the end! Can't tell if they are buried anywhere else in the song, but they're prominent in the last minute.
Miscellaneous: Crisp ending.


Album: July Talk (2012)

Just a simple, good song. Yes, it's the third song from this album, so I broke my rule... again. Not even one of my favorites, really, but I think it translates well into Rock Band. Hard to say much more. I only chose it to show their different styles. If I were to cut these four songs listed down to only three, this guy wouldn't be here. Doesn't mean it's a bad song or choice, though! Man, I feel like a dick now. Stupid self-imposed rules.


Vocals: Similar to above, but nice harmonies during the refrain, one gruff and one gentle.
Guitar: Chordfest. Nothing difficult, but nothing mind-blowing.
Bass: Sounds pretty simple.
Drums: Sounds repetitive to my untrained ear.
Keys: Again, I don't hear anything.
Miscellaneous: Crisp, abrupt ending.

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Roman Candle


Background: The keenest of you are saying, "But Atruejedi, you said you wanted bands with NO representation in Rock Band! Roman Candle has a song on the Rock Band Network!" They sure do, and it's a good tune! But I use a Wii and cannot purchase this song. So, technically, there are no Roman Candle songs available... for me ;). Hopefully you'll indulge my violation of this rule, because it was very difficult to select one song from each of their albums, since their 2011 sophomore release is just jammed with amazing tunes. It was easy to choice The Obvious Choice, however, because it also doubles as my favorite song by the band.


The Obvious Choice:

Why Modern Radio is A-OK

Album: Oh Tall Tree In The Ear (2011)


Some of my favorite lyrics of all time. I love the criticism of modern radio and the lamentation of the death of quality music. I'm surprised this wasn't the song selected for the Rock Band Network. Their loss is my gain, I hope! :D


Vocals: Some might be turned off by his vocal style in this song, but if you hate it, I urge you to listen to the other songs below, which feature much more pleasant vocals. No harmonies.
Guitar: Lots of chords, in a good way.
Bass: Pretty standard.
Drums: Nothing special.
Keys: Synthesizer is prominent in the background, and a pipe organ as well! The harmonica could also be charted here during the "solo."
Miscellaneous: No need to chart those backwards lyrics at the beginning. Nice ending. Also, I request "sack of monkeys" be talkies so I can scream them in anger. ;)



Not Strangers Anymore

Album: Debris (2013)


A gentle song, with a more "modern" sound compared to the other choices. I could fall asleep to this, in a good way.


Vocals: Actually pretty, especially compared to The Obvious Choice. Some sort of background vocals are happening here.
Guitar: Sounds varied to me.
Bass: Pretty bland affair, I think.
Drums: I can't tell if it's easy or interesting or difficult or boring.
Keys: Constant synth in the background. Sounds fun to play while singing.
Miscellaneous: Nice, crisp ending.



You Don't Belong To This World

Album: The Wee Hours Revue (2006)


I just love this guy's songwriting. He really paints vivid pictures. A great example of that. Now I want to order a rum and lemonade!


Vocals: Good lyrics, much less abrasive singing than what's featured in the Obvious Choice. No harmonies.
Guitar: Chords. A little solo of sorts.
Bass: Sounds super fun.
Drums: They sound interesting to my untrained ear.
Keys: Synthesizer of some sort.
Miscellaneous: Crisp ending. This song is not available on Spotify.




@TomGuy: I agree, Stop is a great choice as well. But tough choices had to be made... :(

@i0brendan0: Sweet! I'll update the OP.

@Chainsaw Octopus: Great news! I'll update the OP.

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The Redwalls


Background: These guys had three delightfully eclectic albums and then-- POOF! Gone. Such a tragedy, because there's some real talent here. I wish I'd have known of them before they disappeared, or, better yet, seen them live. I'm not surprised they were never considered for a custom, but I feel like if more people knew they even existed, something would have been created. They have so many fantastic tunes that would fit perfectly in your song libraries, so I feel guilty sticking to the Rule of Three here... then again, I violate my own standards not irregularly anyway, so this is my penance, I suppose. Anyway. The ball's in your court now, forum. I've done my part to knock down the barriers of ignorance. ;)

The Obvious Choice:
Colorful Revolution
Album: Universal Blues (2003)

This song sounds like the Beatles and Bob Dylan had a beautiful, time-traveling baby. This is the opening track from their debut album and really sets one of the tones heard throughout their short career together. But if this sound isn't your bag, do not fret. The songs below sound completely different.


Vocals: Really fun melody, pretty background harmonies.
Guitar: All over the place. Lots of styles for lots of fun! Great little solo, too.
Bass: Fairly repetitive but soooo groovy, baby.
Drums: I know nothing about drums, but it sounds fairly simple.
Keys: Piano sounds simple but enjoyable. I really wanna tap it out while singing harmonies!
Miscellaneous: It has its own count-in! And a crisp ending.

Album: The Redwalls (2007)

Do you wish the concept of bad-assery could be transmuted into a living, breathing, song? Well, this is the song for you. A great example of what rock 'n' roll could-- nay, should be.


Vocals: Nice background harmonies. Throat-destroying primary vocals, especially during the refrain. If you aren't screaming these defiant lyrics, you aren't doing it right. I'd feel dirty crooning these vocals... that would be cheating, cheater! To the gallows with ye!

Guitar: Lots of guitar going on here, so take your pick (puns).
Bass: Holy moly! That rumbling bass part just makes me shiver.
Drums: Sounds like standard rock 'n' roll, which ain't a bad thing, brother.
Keys: None.
Miscellaneous: Crisp ending.

Rock & Roll
Album: De Nova (2005)

Come on, little girl! This swingin' number will have you twisting and shouting and clapping to the beat... and if it doesn't, you just don't know cool, square! The Redwalls have pure talent when it comes to channeling by-gone eras of music, and this song wonderfully encapsulates early rock 'n' roll... hence the title. Two minutes of pure, nostalgic ecstacy (wink).


Vocals: I am a choir boy, and that depresses me, because I absolutely dream of singing like this... such a great rock 'n' roll voice.
Guitar: The ladies will a'hoppin' and a'boppin' when you dazzle them with your fingers! A rockin' lil' solo to boot.
Bass: It actually sounds pretty darn fun, but nothing revolutionary.
Drums: Standard rockin' drums. You'll have fun, even if it ain't nothin' special.
Keys: Pffft! This is rock, son. Ain't no room for keys!
Miscellaneous: Nice, crisp ending.

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The Vaccines

Background: I was lucky enough to see these guys perform right before their drummer quit the band, and they are a sloppy, raucous good time to see live (perhaps were, now). They bring a lot of unpolished, raw energy to their shows that isn't my typical reason for seeing bands in concert, but it really works for them. You might describe the performance as sick. Their first album, What Did You Expect From The Vaccines?, is a masterpiece of a debut. It really channels the sound of early rock 'n' roll. It's got the energy and the spunk and the garage acoustics (Post Break-Up Sex from it is now available! Download here). The two following albums are good, but definitely different at best and weird at worst... even though much of that weird is generally interesting and enjoyable. For that reason, though, I had to double-up on choices from their first album and still decided to provide one song a piece from their other efforts. Rule violation, I know. If you're unfamiliar with the band, I hope at least one of the selections below infect your ears... get it?

The Obvious Choice:
If You Wanna
Album: What Did You Expect From The Vaccines? (2011)

As I intimated above, their entire debut record is a joy, so the Obvious Choice would clearly come from this album... but which song? The opening track, Wreckin' Bar (Ra Ra Ra), was a contender, but it's just such a short song. This one has a bit more meat on its bones. Let me elaborate:

Vocals: A fairly simple, pleasant crooning melody with subtle backing harmonies during the refrain. Refreshingly honest (and sad, really) lyrics.
Guitar: Chords. Lots of 'em.
Bass: Standard bass fare.
Drums: Phew. Break out your water bottles and sweat bands, kids. Time to do some work.
Keys: Hey, there's even a cute little keyboard solo! Or maybe that's a guitar... hard to tell. But neat!
Miscellaneous: Abrupt, solid ending.

All In White
Album: What Did You Expect From The Vaccines? (2011)

The crowd go crazy when this song is performed at their shows... and I can't blame them. Something about it is just compelling and cool. At first I was surprised this made my suggestion list, but the more I think about it, no, I shouldn't be surprised at all. It's a great tune, and the problem is the Vaccines have too many songs that could be the Obvious Choice. I chose this one as a runner-up because it's a bit slower and doesn't represent them entirely... but no single song could.

Vocals: Just a melody. No harmonies needed for this gem. The crowd usually provides their own backing vocals.
Guitar: Chords. Something that could be charted as a solo, but not really a solo, per se.
Bass: Standard bass line is the foundation here.
Drums: Standard stuff most of the time, but it sounds pretty fun and there are definitely some interesting parts.
Keys: None.
Miscellaneous: Slow, crisp ending.

Minimal Affection
Album: English Graffiti (2015)

Almost sounds like a Cars song, which is a profound compliment. A radical departure from the sound of their first album. Again, that's not a bad thing, just... unexpected. Hey. If it's good, it's good. And it's good.

Vocals: Smooth and relaxing. Not challenging by any means. Some buried, subtle harmonies in there.
Guitar: Guitar takes a backseat to the synthesizer most of the time, but it's there and even prominent at times.
Bass: It's there. Nothing special.
Drums: See above. Sorry, drummers.
Keys: Wacky synthesizer which is really darn cool and the backbone of this song, sonically.
Miscellaneous: Abrupt ending.

Bad Mood
Album: Come of Age (2012)

A personal favorite. A really bad-ass song, especially live. Borderline punk, and we all know Rock Band needs more non-pop punk. It was so intense being in the crowd when this was performed. Even the wall-flowers were jumping around with their heads banging! Feeeel it!

Vocals: No harmonies. For a punk song, it's surprisingly refined, vocally. Might remind you of The Damned. Brooding is a good adjective to describe this one.
Guitar: Shred that shiz, son! Woo!
Bass: Standard.
Drums: Also standard.
Keys: Keys would ruin the point of this. None.
Miscellaneous: Crisp.

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The Interrupters


Background: Okay, I’ll admit it… I have a thing for hellcat punk. I love this chick’s raspy energy. I’ve read criticism online centering around the fact that this band offers nothing new; they’re just a generic hellcat punk/ska band. And perhaps they are, but is that so bad? Do they need to offer something new and different? Honestly, the scene seems pretty dead (to me; maybe I’m missing out!), so I’ve welcomed them on my playlists. I hope you’ll welcome them into your ears as well.


The Obvious Choice:

She Got Arrested

Album: Say It Out Loud (2016)


This song is the punk/ska equivalent of Goodbye Earl by the Dixie Chicks (the Me First and the Gimme Gimmes cover of that song would be a great candidate for custom creation). Feminism rules! Castrate the misogynistic, knuckle-dragging governmant! ...Ahem. Sorry.


Vocals: A raspy, sexy melody (don’t judge me) with many different types of backing vocals. Harmony heaven. Get ready for triple awesomes, try-hards!

Guitar: Ska guitar. A solo or two or three.

Bass: Ska bass. Funky fun!

Drums: Drums. Are ska drums a thing? I’m pretty ignorant on this. Sounds pretty basic, anyway.

Keys: Pipe organ! Get ready to hold down those ivories.

Miscellaneous: Crisp ending.




Album: Say It Out Loud (2016)


Oh man, does it get much more punk/ska than this? The way she sings this one is just so… Operation Ivy, honestly! A high compliment! Great lyrics, great instrumentals, a great message… an instant classic for the revolutionaries among us. Rise up, sheeple!


Vocals: Fun main vocal part, lots of background vocals for rude boys and rude girls alike.

Guitar: Ska guitar, but some rock ‘n’ roll buried in there as well.

Bass: Ska bass. More funky fun.

Drums: I don’t know enough about drums to make a comment.

Keys: Pipe organ solo! Yahoo!

Miscellaneous: I almost wish I made this the Obvious Choice. It's just such a joy of a song.



Take Back The Power

Album: The Interrupters (2014)


The opening track from their debut album. Definitely an anthem and a classically composed, socially conscience punk standard-bearer. I'm going to violate my Rule of Three, however, because I couldn't decide between this song and the following suggestion. There's no need for both in Rock Band, but they're both great tunes.


Vocals: Get the crowd fired up, ‘cause they’ll be backing up the main vocalist on this number.

Guitar: A couple solos of sorts. Gets pretty crazy near the end.

Bass: Just a standard punk bass part.

Drums: Standard punk drums.

Keys: Nope. Get out of here, hippie.

Miscellaneous: A nice, crisp ending.



On A Turntable

Album: Say It Out Loud (2016)


This might be a retread when compared to Take The Power Back above, as thematically they are somewhat similar. But I still love it, especially the allusion of the world spinning like a turntable. Not sure which I'd prefer, as there's no need for both in your library (unless some author falls in love with this band ;)).


Vocals: A good anthem for parties. Plenty for the crowd to help out with.

Guitar: Lots of chords. A nice solo.

Bass: More rock than ska this time, bassists.

Drums: They’re there. Lots of things to hit.

Keys: Nope.

Miscellaneous: Nice, crisp ending.

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Operation Ivy


Background: I am truly flabbergasted these guys have not a single song in Rock Band, be it on disc, as an official Harmonix DLC release, or as a custom here… it is disgusting. You should all be ashamed and embarrassed, Harmonix especially! Operation Ivy are punk rock legends, and if you don’t know them, you should feel awful about your ignorance. ...Ahem. Sorry. Fear not, simple plebeian. I am here to lift you out of the shadows and into the glow of nuclear winter. And to make up for my frequent violations of the Rule of Three, I will only post two songs by these godfathers of punk. After all, the songs should speak for themselves. And since there are only two choices, I shall declare them both Obvious Choices… runner-ups not needed!


The Obvious Choice:

Sound System

Album: Operation Ivy (1989)


You should have heard this song at some point in your life. If not, you’re welcome. I really don’t have much to say about it, as it really should speak for itself. If I have to talk you into enjoying and appreciating a song by a legendary band, they must not be legendary. Their first (and only!) album had twenty-seven (27!) tracks, but this song and the selection below are the absolute stand-outs from a record on which half the tracks would be great (and deserving of a place) in your library.


Vocals: Not exactly refined vocals... a custom should probably utilize a fair amount of talkies if you don't want to drive vocalists insane. A good camaraderie should exist between the band during the harmonious refrain.

Guitar: Ska guitar.

Bass: All over the place.

Drums: Bang-bang, bang. Bang-bang, bang. Drum roll, please!

Keys: Hell no, fascist.

Miscellaneous: Crisp, abrupt ending.


The (Other) Obvious Choice:


Album: Operation Ivy (1989)


The first time I heard this song it was by Green Day on their 1,039/Smoothed Out Slappy Hours compilation album. It wasn’t until later I discovered it was originally by Operation Ivy and that’s how this all began. Thank goodness for covers! Completely different styles, though! Green Day’s version is good, no doubt, but I appreciate the raw anger of the original. Both would be good fits for Rock Band, actually...


Vocals:Yelling. Lots of yelling. Kind of melodic yelling during the chorus, fit for two! Either way, it should be pitched so you can fail spectacularly while singing.

Guitar: Rockin' guitar chords. A solo! Maybe two if you're liberal with the definition.

Bass: A standard punk rock bass line.

Drums: You hit things hard and fast during this song. Emphasis on hard.

Keys:Get the !&$% out of here.

Miscellaneous: Crisp ending.

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The Roots



Background: One day long ago, I was driving home from college listening to the local NPR affiliate during their underground hip-hop hour when I heard it. I was instantly drawn in, even before Boba Fett was mentioned. My experience with hip-hop up to that point was with rap, and yes, I’ll be that pretentious snob that says there’s a significant difference. I instantly copped the album featuring that Roots track and the rest is history; I’ve been a huge fan of them ever since. I’m so glad they’ve found mainstream success since becoming Jimmy Fallon’s house band; they put in the work and they deserve it. While I’d proffer that their music these says isn’t as good as their earlier output, that doesn’t have a deleterious effect on the gems they’ve given the scene in the past decades. And yes, I said band. Give the drummer some!


The Obvious Choice:

What They Do

Now available! Download here

Album: Illadelph Halflife (1996)


The Roots make me almost appreciate the Grammy Awards, because they’re one of the few acts who deserve their nominations and wins. This song came slightly before that era for them, but it blew up and led them to their eventually success. It’s a jam that has it all. Observe:


Vocals: Black Thought raps the verses while the chorus is sung with both melody and harmony.

Guitar: Wacky guitar intro (combined with keys) and consistently sexy guitar throughout.

Bass: Nothing fancy, but it sounds enjoyable.

Drums: Also nothing fancy. Still, you’re Questlove.

Keys: Wacky keyboard intro (combined with guitar) and consistent background keys throughout.

Miscellaneous: Definitely a keys-and-guitar-centric song. Bass and drums just form the foundation. Oh, and it fades out. Bummer.



The Seed (2.0)

Now available! Download here

Album: Phrenology (2002)


This song, critical of the music industry, is sonic sex. Actually, that doesn't do it justice. How about the description Pitchfork gave it? An "orgiastic garage funk number." Intrigued yet? Read on...


Vocals: Rapping and pretty singing! Crazy metaphorical lyrics that will have your audience aroused and/or confused and/or disgusted. Pick at least two.

Guitar: Consistent playing, which is a big plus for a hip-hop song. As I said, they're a band.

Bass: Super fun, but not complex. Do want.

Drums: You get to be Questlove again.

Keys: Not this time.

Miscellaneous: Solid, crisp ending.



Mellow My Man

Album: Do You Want More?!!!?! (1995)


Clever and cool lyrics, which is par for the roots. Nice instrumentals. Back-and-forth rapping with much hype. Break out your upright bass peripheral at the two-minute mark.


Vocals: Two MCs to choose from: Black Thought or the now-departed Malik B. Both are bad-butt emmer-effers.

Guitar: None… but so many things that aren’t guitar are happening that it’s possible something could be charted here.

Bass: Super fun and smooth and sexy.

Drums: Drums. As Questlove. Drool.

Keys: Lots of instruments to put in this slot. But you definitely want to pretend you’re Scott Storch here. Shove the other secondary sounds in the guitar slot.

Miscellaneous: It doesn’t really fade out, so that’s a positive.

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Delta Spirit



Background: If I recall correctly, I discovered these guys because NoiseTrade sent me an email with a link to a promotional compilation to encourage listeners to purchase their then-upcoming 2014 album. Well, it worked, because that free sampler made me a dedicated listener with a ticket stub and a t-shirt. Thanks, NoiseTrade! Now let me pay it forward. You know how I usually say I don't care about drums and know nothing about drums? Well, I still know nothing about drums or drumming or drummers, but I do know that I love the drums in every Delta Spirit song. Something about them... I'm not even sure if it's the style. Maybe it's just the sound of it. Either way, man!, the energy. Unfortunately, my measly three selections do not do the band justice in this respect, but I had to choose the first two of these three, no questions asked. My concert experience demanded it. The final selection was just a good tune with lots of keys. Sorry, drummers. If you want-- actually, screw it. Rule breaking commencing. Posting a fourth song just for the drummers.


The Obvious Choice:


Album: I Think I’ve Found It (2006)

(Not the original version I want to chart)


Do you appreciate or even enjoy dark lyrics with twisted imagery that actually sound happy and hopeful? I sure do. This song is pretty &@%’d up if you really listen. And that’s why I love it… because if you heard it on the radio and weren’t paying attention, you’d be cheerful and smiling. Thanks, chorus!


Vocals: A pleading refrain with haunting verses. You best sing this with anguish (and optimism?) in your voice. Backing vocals!

Guitar: Multiple guitar parts from which to choose. Because of that, there are lots of styles with which authors can play around.

Bass: This bass part sounds like my bread ‘n’ butter. Nothing overly difficult, but enough variety to keep a player busy and interested while bouncing around the living room.

Drums: Doesn’t sound like anything special to my untrained ear, but I like it lots and it's definitely important to the vibe.

Keys: Nope… but ambitious authors might be tempted to chart the other guitar part here. Heh.

Miscellaneous: Crisp ending. There is a later version of this on their full-length 2007 album Ode To Sunshine, but I much prefer the version from this EP. The embedded video and Spotify playlist use my preferred version, but you can still find the inferior version on your own. I don't want to taint your ears.



People, Turn Around!

Album: Ode To Sunshine (2007)


Bear with me while I introduce this unconventional selection. At Delta Spirit’s live shows, this is typically the last song of the encore and therefore the final song of the evening. I really wanted them to play this live, so I was ecstatic when they did, but I was very surprised at the when… I adore this song, but I didn’t think it would be a good note to end the night on! Well, I was quite wrong. This song electrifies the crowd and unites them in a drunken sing-along… hopefully an experience that is coming to a living room near you soon.


Vocals: Beautifully somber lyrics with a great refrain for parties, especially once everybody is relatively intoxicated. Sad lyrics + alcohol + this song = camaraderie. Make some new friends with this one.

Guitar: Beyond guitar, there is a lot of what sounds like a mandolin in this song, I think. I could be wrong. Either way, it’s a strumfest, and this would be a great opportunity to use the polarizing “super fast strumming” mechanic provided by the Rock Band 3 engine.

Bass: It doesn’t play a big role in this song, but when it’s there, it’s a cute part.

Drums: Give the drummer a microphone with a stand for backup vocals during this, because he or she won't be very busy. Lots of hand percussion with a shaker, but I’m unsure how you’d want to handle that.

Keys: Piano plays a pretty important role in this song. When it doesn’t, the harmonica could be charted here.

Miscellaneous: Crisp ending. There is an earlier version of this on their 2006 EP I Think I’ve Found It, but I much prefer the version from this full-length album. The embedded video and Spotify playlist use my preferred version, but you can still find the inferior version on your own. I don't want to taint your ears.



Language of the Dead

Album: Into The Wide (2014)


This is a very strong album, so choosing one track wasn’t easy, but I did it. For you, dear reader. I deserve the discomfort of questioning if I made the right decision for all of my previous rule violations. So, why this track? An intriguing title, strange lyrics, historical references, and political/social platitudes make me feel very uneducated and unintelligent when I listen to this song and try to decipher the true meaning. Nonetheless, food for thought and sound for ears.


Vocals: There are very subtle harmonies here that I can barely make out at the moment… make sure to use a cotton swab before trying to hammer them out.

Guitar: To my ear, the guitar is pretty buried in this song. It’s there, it just isn’t fancy or prominent or memorable, really. This is very much a drums and synthesizer song.

Bass: Standard stuff. The bass takes a backseat to the drums on this one.

Drums: I like ‘em. Definitely the driving force of the song. I feel like they might actually be interesting for drummers, but if not, that's why I threw in the fourth bonus song.

Keys: Beyond drums, keys are the most prominent sound you’ll hear during this song. Fancy!

Miscellaneous: Abrupt, crisp ending.


Give The Drummer Some!:

For My Enemy

Album: Into The Wide (2014)


Look, I never drum, but these drums excite me. I can't tell you how many times I've ignorantly and unskillfully air-drummed while listening to this song. I hope I don't disappoint you... :(


Vocals: Vocals should be fun for this one, and nice harmonies, too.

Guitar: It's there... taking a backseat to drums. A sort of solo near the end, when the drummer is breaking his arms and leg.

Bass: Yawn. Who cares? This is for drummers!

Drums: I'm really trying for you drummers with this one! It sounds complex and varied and intense to me! Am I wrong? Ugh. I know nothing.

Keys: Low, rumbling piano. Some synth as well, I think.

Miscellaneous: Abrupt ending. Conveniently, this is one of my favorite songs on the album, so if it gets made, both the drummers and I benefit.

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Ike Reilly


Background: Something about Ike Reilly is so… subversive. And that’s precisely why I love him. He seems to give no %@s and will write about whatever he desires, specifically those dark desires, morals be damned. Deviance is his specialty, and it really fills a niche in my library for that reason. He’s so raw and genuine and unfiltered. He says what we’re all thinking. And since he’s such a rule-breaker, I’m breaking the rules here: all three selections below are from the same album. That doesn’t mean his other albums aren’t as good… but these tracks really display his different styles and would work well in Rock Band. Plus, he makes me want to be a rebel. As a further act of defiance, since there is no real Obvious Choice here… I'll just use lyrics. These three songs are all vastly different and I'd be pleased with any of them as a custom.


Flow Into Your Lungs:

Ballad of Jack and Haley

Album: Hard Luck Stories (2009)


A genuinely sweet tale of a single father who grows and sells marijuana to make ends meet. A great fit for Rock Band, parents, and potheads alike. Hopefully someone gives this song the green light.


Vocals: Great lyrics, a great story, a great melody, and great harmonies. Just… great. It’s all great.

Guitar: A pretty standard part here, but instrumental to the song. Lots of fingering.

Bass: Nothing special, but it ain’t awful.

Drums: Standard drums.

Keys: Synthesizer in the background, but nothing prominent.

Miscellaneous: Crisp ending. Bonus points if you don’t get all emotional like me. :crying:


Dump All Your Dreams Down Into My Throat:

The War On The Terror And Drugs

Album: Hard Luck Stories (2009)


Ike shares the microphone with Shooter Jennings for this duet. Very memorable lyrics. Ike paints pictures. Greasy, oily pictures. A great song for parties with alcohol. And it brings some desperately needed quality country vibes to Rock Band.


Vocals: Ike and Shooter trade bars back and forth, with shared refrains and verses of their own.

Guitar: The beautiful guitar playing featured here is the star of the show beyond the dual vocals. Every other instrument takes a seat at the very back of the venue.

Bass: It’s there.

Drums: They exist.

Keys: There’s some piano here, prominent at times.

Miscellaneous: Do you feel corrupted yet?


Keeping Coaches Off the Cheerleaders:

Good Work (If You Can Get It)

Album: Hard Luck Stories (2009)


I really waffled back and forth between the third and final selection for Ike, but I think this tune does a good job of displaying his grimy side. It's a sort of anthem for the bored, rural youth. School's out and it's time to party, rich or poor. Plus, instrumentally, it’s enjoyable for the entire band with a slight country slant.


Vocals: Authors can utilize talkies for parts, and there are group harmonies during the refrain.

Guitar: The star of the show, of course.

Bass: Not bad.

Drums: Not bad either.

Keys: Synthesizer or pipe organ at times. And there’s a harmonica!

Miscellaneous: Fades out, sort of. That's just Ike being a rebel and making it difficult for authors to decide what to do.

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The Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band

Background: I've seen the Reverend Peyton and his Big Damn Band at least three or four times over the years, and it's always a barn-burner. The band consists of the Reverend on guitar, his friend Max on drums, and the Rev's wife Breezy on washboard. There is no bass guitar player. "But Atruejedi! I clearly hear the plucking of a bass string!" That's right, dear reader, you do. The Reverend is playing it with his thumb as he simultaneously plays the most insane guitar parts. I have no gosh darn idea how you'd tackle this band when making a custom of one of their songs, but I felt compelled to offer up some tunes by them just to see who among you authors suffers from oppositional defiance disorder and wants to do the impossible. I will spare you and break my Rule of Three by only offering two suggestions.


The Obvious Choice:

Something For Nothing

Album: Between The Ditches (2012)

The Reverend Peyton is an incredibly talented guitar player, so that instrument is always going to be the focus of any song he and his band are performing. Don't expect much from the other instruments, especially since the washboard doesn't really translate into Rock Band (...unless you charted it to pro keys, lolol). I won't take it personally if nobody likes this band and nobody expresses interest in charting them... but do yourself a favor and see him live if you ever get the chance!

Vocals: The Rev has a particular way of singing. And Breezy's back there thumbing away at her washboard and singing harmonies.
Guitar: Bad-ass. A real treat for expert guitar players, I'd assume. But the question is...
Bass: ...do you put the simple bass part here, or on the guitar part where it actually belongs? Ha!
Drums: Just hit 'em hard.
Keys: Washboard, anyone?
Miscellaneous: Good luck. At least there's a crisp ending.

The (Other) Obvious Choice:

Let's Jump A Train

Album: So Delicious (2015)


Can't say much more than this is a bad-ass tune.


Vocals: At least he's singing notes high enough to comfortably hit this time. And Breezy's still back there. Did I mention she sets her washboard on fire at the end of every live show?
Guitar: More bad-ass guitar playing from the Rev.
Bass: More... thumb-strumming-while-playing-the-guitar-simultaneously by the Rev.
Drums: Cowbell. Or woodblock. Something.
Keys: Still waiting for that washboard...
Miscellaneous: Crisp ending.


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