20 Reasons Why Every Rocksmith 2014 Owner Should Import OG Rocksmith

Pretty much everyone can agree that Rocksmith 2014 is a better platform, experience and learning tool than the original Rocksmith (from here on out referred to as OG Rocksmith). Not only is Rockmith 2014 a better looking game, but cool features like Guitarcade and Session mode took what some might interpret as a Guitar Hero clone, into a legit teaching tool. For me personally, it’s taken me from a slightly below average player to a slightly above average player. More than anything, it taught me to love guitar again.

Praising of Rocksmith 2014 aside, OG Rocksmith had some serious true shred tracks on its soundtrack. Whether you’re looking for some groovy bass lines, some incredibly intricate and fun chord progressions or some face melting solos, OG Rocksmith has something for everyone and should be a part of any Rocksmith player’s library. In fact, here are 20 reasons (in no particular order) why you should import OG Rocksmith right now.

“I Got Mine” The Black Keys

I love The Black Keys. I think they’re one of the best rock bands out there today and their simplistic, yet groovtastic riffs are undeniably catchy and a blast to play. This particular track is far more difficult than the great-for-beginners, “Next Girl”, and features some fun barre chords, a great bass line and an amazingly fun lead guitar track, complete with an easy enough to master solo. Don’t sleep on this track.

Guitar:

Bass:

 

“Rebel Rebel” David Bowie

Initially, I hated playing this song. That was until I tried the bass track, which has some of the most fun groves ever. Simple, but constantly moving, the bass line is great for beginners and intermediate players. The guitar tracks are good as well, albeit a little repetitive (the rhythm track is a real snoozer IMO), but still, who doesn’t love some classic Bowie?

Guitar/rhythm/bass:

 

“Take Me Out” Franz Ferdinand

Another band that deserves their own DLC pack, this song has some of the best riffs this side of “R U Mine”. One thing I love about this song is how the rhythm, lead and bass tracks are all different. The rhythm track isn’t just a dumbed down version of the lead, and the bass is great to groove along to. One of the first tracks I mastered, and a great one for any guitarist’s riff repertoire.

Lead Guitar:

Rhythm Guitar:

Bass:

 

“Are You Gonna Go My Way” Lenny Kravitz

OK, so confession time, Lenny Kravitz was one of my first favorite guitarists. Back in middle school, “Fly Away” was my #1 jam blasting out of my locker during nutrition break. All nostalgia aside, this riff is so simple and fun. The duel riffs between lead and rhythm are amazingly cool sounding and the breakdown solo on lead is incredibly satisfying. My recommendation? Get a few friends together with a few acoustic and hear how awesome this sounds when played together IRL. You’ll make Lenny (AKA Cinna) proud.

Lead/Rhythm/Bass:

 

“Well OK Honey” Jenny O

A lot of times people automatically assume that the faster a song is, the more fun it is to play. This song throws that thinking right in the trash. Probably one of the mellower songs available, this song just kills. The rhythm track is a great way to practice non-traditional open chords, the lead has fun, simple arpeggios and that opening bass grove is so smooth, it can start a fireplace. Just play it.

Lead:

Bass:

 

“Use Somebody” Kings Of Leon

Yet another band that sorely needs a DLC pack (not just for the slightly overplayed “Sex on Fire” but anything from Aha Shake Heartbreak or Youth and Young Manhood would be amazing) Kings of Leon somehow snuck onto OG Rocksmith with one of their most annoying songs. Song aside, the rhythm track is great for beginners, the lead is a real confidence booster for aspiring shredders, and the bass is simplistically fun. While it’s not the hardest song of the bunch, it’s still a great one to sing along to at a campfire.

Lead:

Bass:

 

“Surf Hell” Little Barrie

One of my all time favorite things from the Rock Band/Guitar Hero days was how you could discover bands and music you never knew existed. This song and band was my favorite, “who?” band from OG Rocksmith. With one of the trickiest and most fun bass and lead riffs, this song is difficult to master but so, so satisfying once you do. Wax down your board, grab a pick and hang ten bro (and bro-ettes).

Lead:

Bass:

 

“In Bloom” Nirvana

Grab some flannel, stop showering and let’s head to the 90s! With one of the most instantly memorable riffs from Nirvana’s catalogue, this track is a must for anyone missing the glory days of grunge. With a fun lil’ solo and an amazingly fun chord progression, this is my favorite of the Rocksmith Nirvana tracks released (so far).

Lead:

Bass:

 

“Where Is My Mind?” The Pixies

This was my first 100% mastered song and playing it just makes me think of blowing up buildings and Brad Pitt. The lead track is an essential one for any acoustic guitar player and is easy enough for anyone to master, just try not to break any glasses with your falsettos.

Lead:

 

“California Brain” RapScallions

Let me just say this from the get-go. Rap-Rock (with the exception of RATM) is generally terrible. That being said, damn it if it isn’t fun to play. With amazingly fun little riffs on guitar, and a bass line that is one of my all time favorites, this is a little talked about track that needs more attention. Ignore the hate and just play.

All Tracks:

 

“The Spider and the Fly” The Rolling Stones

I do enjoy The Rolling Stones, and when they’re extra bluesy they are at their best, which is why I chose this song over their far more popular “Satisfaction” (also included in OG Rocksmith). This whole track is basically a lesson on how to play blues guitar, so strap in and see what ol’ Keith can teach you.

All Tracks:

 

“Higher Ground” Red Hot Chili Peppers

I know I’m in the minority here, but I can’t stand RHCP. Still, you can’t deny that Flea knows how to slappa-da-bass. This is a bass players dream song and if you can master it, mad respect. I’m sure The Peppers will get their own DLC soon (2015?), but until then, enjoy this diddy.

Bass:

Lead and Rhythm:

 

I Want Some More” Dan Auerbach

I already told you how much I love The Black Keys, and this tune from Dan Auerbach’s solo album is great. Similar to “I Got Mine”, but perhaps slightly easier, this song still has some great techniques, a fun solo and a great (if not repetitive bass line). A must play for any Blues/Black Keys fans.

Lead:

 

“High and Dry” Radiohead

This song is one of the Radiohead’s most accessible songs and such a blast to play along with and sing. The lead track has some great parts and the rhythm is great for beginners looking to improve their strumming. If you’re looking for an easier Radiohead song than “Paranoid Android” or “Creep” this is your answer until your fingers get more dexterous.

Lead:

 


“Panic Switch” Silversun Pickups

Damn I love this song and band. While we all patiently wait for “Lazy Eye” to be released as DLC, this song has an insanely catchy, slightly tricky riff that’s a blast to play on either bass or lead. While it does get a little bit on the long side, this tune gets points for having one of my favorite finger stretching riffs of all time.

Lead:

Bass:

 

“Outshined” Soundgarden

At the writing of this, we’re currently getting some more Soundgarden (hooray!) and this track is everything I love about them: Insanely fun riffs, solos that challenge without overwhelming, and of course dat drop D. Both lead and rhythm tracks are a blast to play and the bass is nothing to sneeze at either. If you’re not sure if the new Soundgarden DLC is for you, try this track out.

Lead:

Bass:

 

“Under Cover of Darkness” The Strokes

A warning for this tune. You might see The Strokes and think, psshhhh easy. Nope. This song has some really challenging parts for lead and rhythm, but don’t let that discourage you, as it’s a great song. The verses are so much fun, the choruses are infuriatingly challenging and the solo is simplistic, yet catchy. I don’t see a lot of people talking about how great this song is but they really should.

Lead:

 


“Mean Bitch” Taddy Porter

Another band I had never heard of with a great song. Maybe it’s the title, maybe it’s the rhythm of the piece, maybe it’s the fun little riffs, but this song gets my toes tapping, my fists pumping and is my go to if I need some energy to get through some tough songs. The solo was recently named one of the best solos in Rocksmith and I must concur. This is a great song by a little known band and a must play for everyone.

Lead:

Bass:

 

“Slither” Velvet Revolver

Aaaand now the reason we’ll never see G&R on Rocksmith (damn you Axl). This song is such a blast to play. The main riff is infectious, the bass line is groovtastic and the solo is a real melter. This makes a nice addition to the other Slash songs available and hopefully more to come in the future.

Lead:

Bass:

 

“Islands” The XX

If you’ve never heard of The XX, stop what you’re doing and listen to their debut album. After you’ve finished that 44 minutes of amazement, play this song. Simple riffs, with a lot to learn from, this song is a great way to wind down the day (or night). Plus you can’t deny how fun that middle lead part is.

Lead:

Bass:

 

So those are my top 20 picks, but as with everything, music is highly subjective so what was left out or what shouldn’t have even been mentioned? Let us know in the comments below.

For information on importing songs refer to the Rocksmith FAQ