Video game lets fans live out their rock 'n roll fantasy

Ryan Gonzalez
Ryan Gonzalez
Curtis Ikaika McNicoll
Curtis Ikaika McNicoll
Keoni Lee
Keoni Lee

By Leland Kim - bio | email

MO'ILI'ILI (KHNL) -  Rock 'n roll  band Journey gets ready to play to sold out crowds in Hawaii next week.  Of course many fans will live out their rock and roll fantasies, but is there another way to do that?  Here are three guys who know how to rock the virtual world.

These thirty-something professionals have been friends since high school.  They're self described "band geeks" from Kamehameha Schools.  And after they graduated, it was off to the real world.

"My name is Curtis McNicoll and I'm a software developer," said McNicoll, who works for Team Praxis.

"My name is Keoni Lee and I own a small cable station," said Lee, who runs Oiwi TV.

"My name is Ryan Gonzalez and I'm a multi-media publisher," said Gonzalez, who works for Kamehameha Schools.

They're professional guys now, but that dream of rock and roll stardom never left them.

And it doesn't have to, thanks to Rock Band.  This video game lets gamers play the guitar, the bass, and even the drums.

"It just makes you feel like you're playing the music," said McNicoll.  "When you're playing at a high difficulty level and you just nail a solo, you just feel like you rocked out.  It's awesome!"

And these guys say it's not as difficult as playing real instruments.

"This is kind of a little bit easier," said Lee. "You're just following along some chords on the screen, and it's only five notes really."

For Gonzalez, he can compare playing Rock Band to the real thing.  He was a member of the multi-Hoku award winning band 'Ale'a.

"It feels really close actually," said Gonzalez.  "There's no setup involved so you can jump right on and play your favorite tunes, and it actually feels like you're in a rock band."

You don't have to be a talented musician to enjoy rock band.

"I've always had fantasies of being a rock star, but unfortunately, I have no talent," said Lee.  "So this is the closest I'm ever gonna get."

Speaking of no talent, what's a rock band without a lead singer.  So I filled in.

As the saying goes, don't quit your day job.

So no matter your talent level, anyone can rock out on Rock Band.

"Come over, just throw a big party, have a bunch of people take turns, everybody plays a different instrument and stuff," said McNicoll.  "It's a lot of fun."

"And it's very social so you can have friends over and everybody can jump on no matter if they're just starting or if they've played a long time," added Gonzalez.

More than a million fans have bought Rock Band for XBox 360 and Playstation 3.  And gamers have downloaded more than 2.5 million Rock Band songs so far, and the numbers continue to go up every day.