Opinion: Why Your Favourite Band isn’t on Rocksmith

With every music game there are bands everyone wants in. Over the years the knowledge has spread about which bands are possible and which aren’t, but with Rocksmith it’s a whole new spectrum of players that are unfamiliar with the reasons why we can’t have a certain band or artist. This article will help to explain speculative reasons why these highly requested bands won’t be on your Rocksmith disc anytime soon.

Also please remember that we still don’t understand how Music Licensing works and if you think you do, you probably don’t.

Led Zeppelin

Led Zeppelin is a band everyone wants in their favourite music game. Jimmy Page has been vehemently opposed to the idea for a few reasons:  He doesn’t want to hand the master tapes over. and he generally doesn’t like music games. Of course both those things are slightly “non issues” with Rocksmith, but nonetheless despite him slightly changing his mind in 2010, there has been no evidence that Jimmy will be handing over Led Zeppelin tracks anytime soon.

Pink Floyd

While there has never been much open discussion on why exactly Pink Floyd hasn’t appeared in any video game yet, Nick Mason (drummer) wasn’t thrilled about the idea of their music being experienced through plastic guitars. Since 2009 there has been no sign of any progress being made on this. Also you’d have to imagine a pretty hefty price tag to lock in a song like Time or Comfortably Numb.


Guitar Hero: Metallica was released in 2009, since then there has been no other Metallica songs released for any other music game. Relicensed, yes, but no new content. As some people may remember in 2010 with the release of Guitar Hero Warriors of Rock all the Metallica songs were relicensed for export into GH5, Band Hero, and Warriors of Rock. This suggests that the exclusivity contract was extended and in my mind, has been confirmed by the appearance of Metallica at various Activision events and recently them being characters in Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD.

The Beatles

Harmonix released The Beatles: Rock Band in 2009. No tracks from the game export, there has been no DLC released for the platform since December of 2009 (or if you are on PS3 April 2010). There will never be another music game that has their music. Fight me.

Streaming doesn’t buy you DLC

Guns N’ Roses

Axl Rose and Slash do not get along. Now that we understand that, you should know nothing angers Axl Rose more than Slash’s old band Velvet Revolver. Slither is a track on disc for Rocksmith. There will never be Guns N’ Roses on Rocksmith.

Update: Yeah, whatever you say…

Jimi Hendrix

Exclusive to Harmonix and now BandFuse. This could change in the future and knowing Janie, it’s pretty likely that we could see Hendrix come to Rocksmith in the future.


While things have changed this year, AC/DC’s only Music DLC release was through a separate disc that was exportable. These songs to this day have not appeared via the music store nor did “Let There Be Rock” export from Rock Band 2. Out of all the bands so far, AC/DC is definitely one of the more likely ones to show up in the future.

Green Day

Harmonix released Green Day: Rock Band, in 2010. The game exported completely on launch and recently one of their newest singles “Oh Love” was released for download. Following that, the entire on disc setlist was relicensed for digital download via the music store. It seems unlikely that Green Day’s music will ever appear outside of that platform.


Despite a wonderful story about meeting members of the band on a flight, Journey’s inclusion in Rocksmith seems very unlikely. Harmonix was unable to export Anyway You Want It, and since then have only had one other appearance of Journey through their music store. Don’t Stop Believing. Problems seem to stem from their original vocalist, Steve Perry being unwilling to co-operate with the other members of the band. If Journey ever does appear in Rocksmith, chances are it will be one of those two songs.

The Who

Another supposed Harmonix Exclusive band, but you never know.


Other than their inclusion in Guitar Hero World Tour and the three DLC songs that followed we haven’t seen anything from the Eagles since.


As far as we know are still under contract with Activision. Last appearance of their music being Cryin in Guitar Hero Warriors of Rock.

Van Halen

I just assume that the general reviews, response, and way Guitar Hero: Van Halen was handled soured the band on music games for the foreseeable future. Also could be still under contact with Activision.

Looks like Eddie and the boys have finally came around… To Rock Band 4!



For awhile we thought it might never happen, but now things seem to be looking a lot more hopeful.


Have never had a master track in any guitar game, only covers in Guitar Hero III and Guitar Hero Encore: Rocks the 80’s. Extremely hard to license.

Update: Rock Band 4 has licensed a 2011 re-record of “No One Like You” there’s hope for Rocksmith yet!

Bands with Weird Tunings

At this time Rocksmith only supports the following tunings: Standard, Drop D, Eb, and Open G. While this could change in the future the developers have stated that tunings like “Drop C,” for instance, don’t register too well with their software. So sorry Sunn O))) fans, we won’t see them on here anytime soon.

Rocksmith UK

The band that filed an injunction against Ubisoft for stealing their name will never end up on Rocksmith, but it seems as though they will be appearing in a different game.


While all these bands unwillingness to participate may discourage and anger you, take solace in the fact that there are many, many other bands that would love to appear on Rocksmith and will be just as enjoyable to play and learn from.

If you’d like a band to appear in Rocksmith be sure to register and fill out the form.