[THREE CENTS] Sounds Like… A Different Band Entirely

Alex Turner and Niall Horan

Different Bands Entirely
Not the same guy

A few months ago I was listening to the radio and heard a new song I was sure was by the Arctic Monkeys, or at the very least a solo tune by the lead singer of the Arctic Monkeys.

Turns out, I had no idea what I was talking about.

It also turns out that I had no idea who the lead singer of the Arctic Monkeys is (it’s Alex Turner) or most of One Direction (we won’t list them here, but for sure you can Google it if you’ve got the time).

The song in question was Nice to Meet Ya by Niall Horan (of One Direction, apparently). It’s catchy. I like it. Nevertheless, I propose it should become part of the repertoire of the aforementioned Monkeys instead.

I mean, right?

I suspect I’m not alone here. In the broader, conceptual way at least.

It’s a pretty common experience to attribute songs to the wrong band. You hear something on the radio, or maybe in the mall, and you’ll swear it’s by artist A. Only it’s not. It’s by Artist K. Sometimes P. Who knew?

I think it’s time for radical action.

To clear up any confusion in the future, and – more importantly – have the world make a little more sense, I recommend these soundalike songs be annexed by the groups they sound like.

Please write your local representatives.

Check out the examples below. Of course, seeing the videos kind of undermines the mistaking notion, but I think the idea still stands.

Maybe close your eyes and just listen…

How can you hear Stuck in the Middle With You by Stealers Wheel and not think you’re listening to Bob Dylan?

Dylan Doppelganger

How is it possible that Sister Hazel‘s Hard to Say isn’t really by Blues Traveler?

The low rez video really ups the confusion level

And most of all, tell me that The HolliesLong Cool Woman in a Black Dress isn’t actually a Creedence Clearwater Revival Song?

(turns out this is actually kind of by design)

Creedence Clearwater Redundant

Come to think of it, former Creedence lead singer, John Fogerty, actually got sued because his solo song The Old Man Down the Road sounded too much like his CCR song, Run Through the Jungle. That lawsuit was like an Escher drawing.

Did I mention The Great Commandment by Camouflage should be by Depeche Mode? It’s true.

Just can’t get enough? Here’s more of the same, but different

Speaking of the 80s, there was a song by Regina called Baby Love that for all intents and purposes was Madonna. I don’t even think Regina would fight me on that.

A Madonna by any other name

And just the other night, I realized Love is Like Oxygen by Sweet should actually belong to ELO. At least the chorus…

I’ve got nothing pithy to say here. I just love this song.

Sometimes these are happenstance, and sometimes there’s intention.

There’s a bit of a fine line between homage and plagiarism. Some might say Blurred Lines. If you’re trying to literally sound like an existing song, you’re risking a lawsuit or worse. On the other hand, just sounding like an existing band might keep you out of trouble. It might even get you a hit single.

Some musicians manage to successfully thread the needle.

Billy Joel‘s whole An Innocent Man album was designed to pay homage to various artists. The vast majority of Lenny Kravitz‘s career is an homage to the 1970s.

Conversely, Lady Gaga‘s Born This Way might’ve cut a little too close to the way her inspiration chose to express herself.

It’s all in the ear of the beholder. And possibly their attorneys.

Any songs you were sure were by another artist and feel that second artist should just absorb it into their catalog? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.


Cover of the graphic novel, "Blowback" (2021)

Jim Hereth‘s latest project is his debut action/adventure graphic novel, Blowback, available now at Amazon and comiXology.

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2 Responses to [THREE CENTS] Sounds Like… A Different Band Entirely

  1. Kathy Hereth says:

    To add to this theory, I always thought “I’m a Sucker for You” by the Jonas Brothers should be sung by Portugal the Man.

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