Green Day Talk Getting Their Own ‘Rock Band’

'I think it might have inspired people to get real guitars and real drums,' Billie Joe Armstrong says of the video game's appeal.

Green Day might not be the first band that comes to mind when you think “video games” (although in their early years, they did have a Sega Genesis on their “Book Mobile” tour bus). So with the release of the new, ultra-deluxe “Green Day: Rock Band” right around the corner, we asked the guys just why they decided to partner up with MTV Games for the project.

And, as is the case with many things involving the band, the answer was a combination of both high-minded idealism, and, well, low-brow, decidedly boozy realism.

“When I’ve seen ‘Rock Band,’ what I’ve noticed is that there’s a lot of old songs and different kinds of songs by different bands that kids are picking up on,” frontman Billie Joe Armstrong explained. “And that’s what I thought was so cool about it … ['Rock Band' is] its own radio station in a way. But, you know, you’re sort of involved with it. And though you’re playing plastic guitars, I think it might even have inspired some people to actually go out and, you know, get real guitars and real drums and start to figure it out on their own, you know?”

“The first time I ever saw ‘Rock Band,’ uh, it was like in a pub in California and they had a TV and they had the game set up in a little corner,” drummer Tré Cool added. “And the people that were in there were having a good time and drinking and stuff. … It was an instant party. [And I was like] ‘That’s pretty cool!’ They were grownups, playing games.”

Seriously, what other game can you think of that’s both inspiring and totally fun to play when you’re wasted? So Green Day signed up, and the band’s game is due Tuesday. There’s only one problem: Although their name is imprinted on the front of the box, the guys are actually rather terrible at “Rock Band.” But that doesn’t mean they’re gonna give up working on their game.

“I’ve played ‘Rock Band’ a few times, with family friends and their kids, you know, go in there and try to jam with them,” bassist Mike Dirnt smiled. “And my experience prior to us being a part of it in any way shape or form has been, uh, it’s hard! But then you certainly catch on, you know … eventually.”

Are you excited to play Green Day’s “Rock Band”? Think you’re better than the band is at the video game? Tell us in the comments!

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