It was only a matter of time, really. With the advent of Guitar Queer-o, ahem, I mean Guitar Hero and the ability to virtually learn to play guitar riffs in popular songs, it is to be expected that David Bowie’s music would show up in a similar game. And it has. The makers of Rock Band, the new game that expands the virtual instrument-playing experience beyond the electric guitar, just released a new song pack with three Bowie songs – Moonage Daydream, Heroes, and Queen Bitch.

Kudos for the choice to include Moonage Daydream and Queen Bitch since they’re slightly less known than his hit singles, but I’m not sure how I feel about the overall idea of including Bowie’s music in a game that poorly simulates playing a musical instrument. Some may argue that it is an innovative way to expose Bowie’s music to a demographic that would not normally seek it out, but I’m ambivalent. This is not the first time that Bowie’s music has shown up in a video game. Most of the songs from “hours…” were featured in cut-scenes in Omikron: The Nomad Soul before the album was ever released. However, both Bowie and Iman had a hand in the making of that game and even lent their likenesses to in-game characters.

The Bowie song pack for Rock Band is a completely different thing. Technically, it’s not selling out since Bowie doesn’t need the money and his music has been featured in numerous commercials…but it still doesn’t sit well with me. Maybe I’m just thinking too hard about this. In any case, I think I’ll stick to learning Bowie’s music the good old-fashioned way, with my real instruments.

2 Responses to “Rock N Roll (Or Some Simulation Of It) With Me”

  1. saudade Says:

    You might appreciate this article in the local San Francisco paper about just this conundrum (well, minus the Bowie):

  2. Webmistress Says:

    I love it. Mr. Hartlaub and I are on the same wavelength.