Rock Band digs up Grateful Dead

Eighteen master tracks from hippie phenomenon will be available for digital download via Harmonix and MTV Games' upcoming rhythm title, including "Truckin'" and "Casey Jones."

Jerry Garcia's death in 1995 nailed shut the coffin on the phenomenon that was the Grateful Dead. For the previous 30 years, the jam band he fronted had numerous hits, with 11 gold, four platinum, and three double-platinum records. It also was on tour virtually nonstop, trailed by thousands of loyal fans known as Deadheads. The band became a symbol of the psychedelic culture of the 1960s, and its various icons--dancing teddy bears and blue-and-red-adorned skulls--remain required insignia on the hippie uniform.

Now, 12 years after his demise, the beard that sold a million Birkenstocks is being dug up--in video game form. Today, MTV Games and Harmonix announced that the Grateful Dead will appear in the forthcoming rhythm game Rock Band. Some 18 master recordings of the group's biggest hits--including "Truckin'," "Uncle John's Band," "Touch of Grey," "Sugar Magnolia," and "Casey Jones"--will be made available for the game on license from Rhino Records. The songs will "be available as digitally distributed game levels following Rock Band's release this holiday season," according to MTV Games.

The Grateful Dead becomes the third famous musical act whose master recordings will be available for digital distribution via Rock Band. At the E3 Media & Business Summit in July, MTV Games announced that original songs from The Who and Metallica could also be downloaded in the forthcoming rhythm game for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. At last month's Games Convention in Germany, a PlayStation 2 edition was revealed, but it was not mentioned in today's Grateful Dead announcement.

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120 comments
ded5833
ded5833

If anyone's heard the song 'Let The Good Times Roll', that's by The Grateful Dead. I'm listening to them more and I'm satisfied with the choice.

stringer4
stringer4

RIpple and Box of rain PLEASEEEEEEEEEe shasam712 You don't have to be old to appreciate good music, Brambler. Bands like The Who are timeless, and despite being 19 I am well versed in their music and they were one of the bands that sealed the deal for me. As for Grateful Dead, I had never heard of them. Were they an American thing? Either way, I will be trying to get a hold of some of their stuff so I can listen, I hope it's good. Every one who has never heard of The Greatful Dead, go to your CD store and get AMERICAN BEAUTY right now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

landrigan
landrigan

"And this article has an error. Grateful Dead have been going strong even since Jerry's death. I've seen them play a few times in the last couple of years... all original line-up minus Jerry, and still selling out massive venues. So to say his death was the "last nail in the coffin" is simply untrue." true but they aren't the grateful dead, they go by just "the dead" ? i could be wrong, so please correct me if so. and definetly some YMSB, sidewalk stars maybe ? and umphrey's would be the ultimate rock band experience but like hell that'll ever happen

PaldaA
PaldaA

im hopin for a little terrapin station action

deadhead127
deadhead127

also get some blugrass in there like some YMSB, leftover salmon and string cheese.

deadhead127
deadhead127

hell yea! now put in some umphrey's, phish, and slightly stupid and im completely sold.

gintheplacetobe
gintheplacetobe

Nice!!!! Guitar Here was definitely lacking when it came to jam-band music! Now we need some Umphrey's McGee or Disco Biscuits and I'm sold! And this article has an error. Grateful Dead have been going strong even since Jerry's death. I've seen them play a few times in the last couple of years... all original line-up minus Jerry, and still selling out massive venues. So to say his death was the "last nail in the coffin" is simply untrue.

Funereal
Funereal

I'm not that surprised that so many people haven't heard of the Dead actually, since it is the type of music that isn't very popular outside of the US. I'm from Sweden and most people here have probably never heard of them, which is silly since they are band with the biggest fan follow of any band in music history, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.

dascarecrow666
dascarecrow666

Where the hell have you people been? How have you never heard of the Grateful Dead? They are argueably one of the most influencial bands in US history and the band that defined the 60s (along with The Beatles). The Grateful Dead deserve to be in this game, and I'm glad that the game will help enlighten real music fans. If you want to listen to punk rock, get Guitar Hero because that looks like it will have a lot more punk rock on it. If you want real music, then buy Rock Band and download all the GD it has to offer, along with all Who songs and hopefully some Allman Brothers.

fatafreak
fatafreak

wow 18 tracks? lol got enough there?

ryanstoy91
ryanstoy91

I feel ignorant for not hearing about The Grateful Dead, but hearing these comments, this will absolutely highten the hype for Rock Band.

Ithok
Ithok

And this is why bands have to get smart about ownership of there songs. Garcia's probably rolling over in his grave about his music being used and exploited for a couple extra bucks. Same for Moon and the rest of The Who. Mettallica you have no excuse

flynsk
flynsk

My dad would have loved this.

shasam712
shasam712

You don't have to be old to appreciate good music, Brambler. Bands like The Who are timeless, and despite being 19 I am well versed in their music and they were one of the bands that sealed the deal for me. As for Grateful Dead, I had never heard of them. Were they an American thing? Either way, I will be trying to get a hold of some of their stuff so I can listen, I hope it's good.

shaneaw
shaneaw

Brambler I know gamers are getting older but come on....The Who, Grateful Dead? Are gamers that old????????????????? Maybe they realized the only people who could afford this game and all the instruments are 50 and older. I do hope they do Nevermind as a album download though Just Thought I would point out that the reason the game developers are putting in content by older bands is because older rock bands rock and 9 times out of 10 the modern rock albums are quite frankly appalling in comparison, and im not a 40 something hippy talking either i'm 20 and well clued up when it comes to rock music of all eras and genres and i would listen to classic rock and metal every single day of the year over modern rock, because it is tuneless, the singers cant sing and the people playing instruments cant play, im not saying all older rock bands are better, but 99 times out of a 100 they are, and if you want proof just look at the list of the worlds best selling albums, they are pretty much all classic rock bands, thats because more people like that stuff than modern rock bands, thats because most modern bands are ****

CLupula
CLupula

am i the only the only one who seems bothered by how mainstream the songs/bands on this are? i mean i'm not expecting impaled nazarene or anything, but, it seems, at least, guitar hero has a little more of an edge to it's track listing.

mrbass208
mrbass208

SweetMercifulCrap!!! The more I hear about this game, the better it gets. I mean, IT'S THE FREAKIN' GRATEFUL DEAD! Finally a chance to play like Jerry (except that whole missing finger thing)

puablo
puablo

HOLY. CRAP. I was already going to buy Rock Band, but now I am going to totally get it ASAP after release if for nothing else other than the Dead. This could very well be the most awesome game ever.

mattster1134
mattster1134

They need show some love for punk rock. Great bands like Black Flag and Fugazi would be awesome to play

attyg
attyg

Great News!! What really need is some PHISH!!

Generic_Dude
Generic_Dude

Tell me that you've got the 12-minute version of "Death Have No Mercy" from the Live/Dead album from 1969, and you've got my $200. Totally effen EPIC.

arczero01
arczero01

Sweet this game is going to be awesome. I hope they get some Rush songs in there too.

sectorzero
sectorzero

Well, 18 songs is always a bonus, even if I don't really listen to Grateful Dead.

rizz1990
rizz1990

two words....casey jones

pondarosa
pondarosa

Everyone is already complaining about the price point for this game - you act like you are just paying for a $200 Guitar Hero when you buy the bundle - you're getting 3 well-made controllers and a game, with 4 seperate career modes, online, and endless replayability and you're complaining? Do you really think it's fair for them to throw in another 2 controllers and all of that extra stuff and then charge the same thing they did for GH2, also while giving you Metallica and all these other bands you've been demanding for two years now (do you have any idea what they have to be paying for to licence some of these bands)? There's a cheaper way for you to enjoy Rock Band - just decide which instrument you want to play the most, and just buy that one and the game. Heck, if you already have GH2 for the 360, you can buy just the game and reuse your Xplorer controller. But yeah, if you want the full experience, you're going to have to pay for it. Stop complaining and start saving!

DSL_mario
DSL_mario

And for any that says the dead cant play you try just jaming for 8 hours with 2 drummers and 3 guitars. Taking your songs and turning them into something differnt

DSL_mario
DSL_mario

WOW this made my day, the dead are my fav band, and I will buy rock band for sure now

mjwickstrom1
mjwickstrom1

My dad is a big Dead Head, so this could possibly convince him to buy Rock Band for me! :D

Buyugold
Buyugold

WOW 18 tracks by the Dead !! this game is looking better and better!!!!

ColoradoKindBud
ColoradoKindBud

That seals the deal for me. I'm definitely getting Rock Band. The Grateful Dead rules!!!

Shinedown220
Shinedown220

Considerring the game cost like $200, the game should come with some of these songs. It should probably have 100 songs from the start. Sadly I hear it will only have 40. Which is a big mark against it.

BIGJosher
BIGJosher

@Brambler According to the article, Grateful Dead played until 1995, so I don't know what you are trying to point out. The only reason you might not have been old is enough is if you are my age, a teenager, and even at that I have still heard of some of the great bands. Also, Why do you say that only people 50 or older could afford this game when you state that you hope they put Nevermind as a download, so I guess you are saying you are going to buy this game and you are 50 or older. Smart one aren't you.

Lasafrog
Lasafrog

Brambler... Yes I am that old (not 50 though), and this stuff is awesome :)

playa42018
playa42018

Everyone's happy until they see the price tag and realize that it costs money to get all these artists and songs.

Brambler
Brambler

I know gamers are getting older but come on....The Who, Grateful Dead? Are gamers that old????????????????? Maybe they realized the only people who could afford this game and all the instruments are 50 and older. I do hope they do Nevermind as a album download though

cosmothehound
cosmothehound

im not a fan really but i cant deny they're a good band. and 18 tracks is great.

comthitnuong
comthitnuong

Well when the offer the DLC, I hope the tracks aren't too expensive...

CrazySw3de
CrazySw3de

I like a few of their songs, but as you all say, more is always better..... Btw, any word/rumors of this coming out for wii?

matrix_hiei
matrix_hiei

sweet. even though i'm not a fan of the band, more dlc options is never a bad thing.

edflam311
edflam311

I am not a fan of the dead, but HMX certainly is living up to their DLC promises already.

Sirpapaya007
Sirpapaya007

Guitar Hero has become one of the prominent promotions at concert venues. So when people say "im in a real rock band so i wont play this." you are only playing yourselves. I just read an article in AP magazine where they band member said "its rhythem based gameplay with sweet music." We dont think we are rock stars. Your ignorance is an embarrassment.

killadudeman
killadudeman

i hate the grateful dead the singer is horrible and the guitarist and drummer are horrible to

RPWii
RPWii

Whoohoo thats gona be fantastic! Deadheads rejoice

link631
link631

cool i love that band they lived in sf

dascarecrow666
dascarecrow666

I think I'm dreaming...18 Grateful Dead songs? Now I'll definently shell out $200 for this game. I just hope that somehow they'll put on Dark Star, 'cause that would be sick.

LordDarkstorn
LordDarkstorn

awesome, do they have more songs frum american beauty?

cheezlarson
cheezlarson

Does anyone know how much these downloadable albums are going to cost?