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John Lennon’s “Imagine” Comes to “Rock Band 3”

John Lennon’s “Imagine” Comes to “Rock Band 3” (photo)

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One could argue that the rhythm game phenomenon of the last decade might be more responsible for more cross-generational music discovery than anything else. Broadcast formats have become predictably cookie-cutter and satellite radio stations, by their very nature, are too narrow in scope to court more than a specific audience’s ears. MTV? Please.

The thing about “Rock Band” is that it brings people in a room together around music. As the series comes around with its third numerical title, it’s somewhat fitting that developer Harmonix just announced that “Imagine” will be coming as a full-album download. The world celebrated John Lennon’s 70th birthday a few weeks ago and 2008’s Beatles Rock Band already stands as a testament to how much Harmonix hearts the Beatles. It’s been well-documented how zealously the remaining members of the Fab Four and deceased members’ family guard the digital rights of the Beatles catalog. Yoko Ono’s extended that same zeal to Lennon’s legacy so it’s a genuine surprise that “Imagine” will land on “Rock Band.”

The album’s a big get for another reason, too. The play mechanics and plastic instrument peripherals for “Rock Band,” “Guitar Hero” and other such performance karaoke titles deliver pretty much identical experiences, and the only real way for each franchise to differentiate themselves is through their musical catalogs. Song exclusivity’s become a legitimate feature for these games and, just a few weeks ago, Harmonix also announced that tracks from the Doors would also be coming to “RB3.” For the millennial set, this might be the only way to hear their parents’ music with their parents present.

Moreover, Harmonix is introducing a new Pro Mode with “Rock Band 3.” This new setting will teach basics like chord fingering to players with no musical chops so, if all the note-matching’s got you curious about real music-making, here’s your chance. Whether it’s a fun romp through an ever-increasing library of hits or digging deep into the techniques that make those songs memorable, playing “Rock Band 3” might just prove that music’s brightest future is in the realm of interactivity.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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