Difference between revisions of "Songs that sound alike"

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|rowspan="2"|Lady Gaga - [[wikipedia:Born This Way (song)|Born This Way]] (2011)
|rowspan="2"|Lady Gaga - [[wikipedia:Born This Way (song)|Born This Way]] (2011)
| Three lines sound the same<ref>
| Three lines sound the same<ref>The three lines are "But all the praying just ain't helping at all", "You ask if their refrigerator is running", and "My mama told me when I was young"
*But all the praying just ain't helping at all
*You ask if their refrigerator is running
*My mama told me when I was young

Revision as of 16:35, 21 December 2012

This article contains original research, observations, conjecture, and synthesis. Feel free to leave a comment if you disagree with something.

This is a list of songs that allegedly sound alike where there is no evidence of legitimate authorized reuse (e.g. sampling or parody). It's not necessarily that the whole song sounds like another song, but when you hear a characteristic passage or the start of a stanza or refrain on the radio, and it sounds like that of another song, you might grow suspicious.

In the following table, a demo is a video, recording, or other published work, whether authorized or under fair use, that plays the relevant segments simultaneously (a "mash-up") or consecutively (a "medley") to demonstrate this similarity. Notes may tell what portions of the songs are similar or may include reliable coverage of the similarity, such as if the copyright owner of one of the songs sued or threatened to sue. Intentional parodies of specific songs are not included; for those see "Weird Al" Yankovic's discography and a list of parodies by other artists.

First Second Demo Notes
Classics IV - Spooky (1968) Maroon 5 - She Will Be Loved (2004)
Cheap Trick - The Flame (1988)
Whitney Houston - So Emotional (1987) Maroon 5 - If I Never See Your Face Again (2006)
Police - Every Breath You Take (1983) Maroon 5 - Won't Go Home Without You (2007)
Ritchie Valens - La Bamba (1958)
Los Lobos - La Bamba
John Fogerty - Centerfield (1985) Listen (ogg)
REM - Stand (1989)
Smash Mouth - Then the Morning Comes (1999)
Chiffons - He's So Fine George Harrison - My Sweet Lord Bright Tunes Music v. Harrisongs Music, listed at UCLA
Isley Brothers - Love Is a Wonderful Thing Michael Bolton - Love Is a Wonderful Thing Three Boys Music v. Michael Bolton, listed at UCLA
David Bowie and Queen - Under Pressure (1981) Vanilla Ice - Ice Ice Baby (1989) YouTube
Jedward song
Settled out of court
Five for Fighting - 100 Years (2003) Taylor Swift - Fifteen (2009) YouTube
Supremes - You Keep Me Hangin' On (1966) U2 - Vertigo (2004) YouTube
Stone Temple Pilots - Sex Type Thing (1992)
U2 - Vertigo (2004) Coheed and Cambria - The Hound (Of Blood and Rank) (2007)
Sade - Smooth Operator (1984) Madonna - Secret (1994)
Sara Bareilles - Love Song (2007) Black Eyed Peas - I Gotta Feeling (2009)
Michael Bublé - Haven't Met You Yet (2009)  
Gwen Stefani - The Sweet Escape (2006)
Daniel Bedingfield - If You're Not the One (2003) David Cook - Light On (2008)
Squeeze - Tempted (1981)
OneRepublic - Apologize (2006) Lady Antebellum - Need You Now (2009)
MercyMe - I Can Only Imagine (2001)
Third Day - You Are So Good to Me John Mayer - Dreaming With A Broken Heart (2007)
Stampeders - Sweet City Woman (1971) Rob Thomas - Her Diamonds (2009)
Matchbox Twenty - Bent (2000) Keith Urban - You'll Think of Me (2004)
Five for Fighting - Superman (2000) The Fray - How to Save a Life (2006)
Bad Meets Evil feat. Bruno Mars - Lighters (2011) YouTube
Eddie Rabbitt - I Love A Rainy Night (1980) Michael Bublé - Haven't Met You Yet (2009)
Allstate jingle Jingle of Federated Media's "Get Engaged" PSAs
Judy Kuhn - Colors of the Wind (1995)
Vanessa Williams - Colors of the Wind (1995)
Lee Ann Womack - I Hope You Dance (2000)
Beyoncé - Halo (January 2009) Kelly Clarkson - Already Gone (August 2009) YouTube Released by RCA despite Clarkson's disapproval
Soft Cell - Tainted Love David Guetta and Akon - Sexy Bitch YouTube
Sheryl Crow - Soak Up the Sun (2002) Daughtry - It's Not Over (2006)
Avril Lavigne - I'm With You (2002) The Script - The Man Who Can't Be Moved (2008)
Pink - Who Knew (May 2006) Jojo - Too Little Too Late (August 2006)
Love Unlimited Orchestra - Love's Theme (1973) Orleans - Dance With Me (1975)
Roxette - The Look (1989) Trapt - Headstrong (2002)
Trapt - Headstrong (2002) Jordin Sparks - Battlefield (2009)
Heart - Alone (1987) Daughtry - What About Now (2008)
Staind - So Far Away (2003)   "Now that we're here"
Gavin Rossdale - Love Remains the Same (2008)  
Bob Welch - Sentimental Lady (1977)
Written in 1972
Lady Gaga - Just Dance (2008) Ke$ha - Tik Tok (2009) YouTube[1] "Just Dance" isn't on Just Dance for Wii, but "Just Dance" 2 (i.e. "Tik Tok") is on Just Dance 2
Ke$ha - Tik Tok (2009) Katy Perry - California Gurls (May 2010) YouTube ...and "Just Dance" 3 (i.e. "California Gurls") is on Just Dance 3
Produced by Dr. Luke (mentioned on Wikipedia)
Miley Cyrus - Permanent December (June 2010) YouTube[2]
Katy Perry - California Gurls (May 2010) Just Dance 4 has no "Tik Tok"-alike.
Creedence Clearwater Revival - Lookin' Out My Back Door (1970) Joe Walsh - Life's Been Good (1978)
Tears for Fears - Shout (1984) Nine Inch Nails - Closer (1994)
Derek and the Dominos - Layla (second movement) (1970) Eddie Money - Two Tickets to Paradise (1977)
Journey - Don't Stop Believin' (1981) Billy Joel - We Didn't Start the Fire (1989)
Eurythmics - Here Comes the Rain Again (1984) Red Hot Chili Peppers - Otherside (2000)
Keith Urban - You'll Think of Me (2004) Daughtry - September (2010)
Buggles - Video Killed the Radio Star (1979) Tim McGraw - Felt Good on My Lips (2010)
Theme from The Adventures of Blinky Bill (1993) Ome Henk - Opblaaskrokodil (2001)
Lynyrd Skynyrd - Sweet Home Alabama (1974) Cracker - Low (1994) listen (ogg) Dropped from the set my ass
Selah - You Are My Hiding Place (2004)
written by Michael Ledner in 1981[1]
Michael Crawford - Phantom of the Opera (1986)
written by Andrew Lloyd Webber
Someone on Yahoo! Answers agrees
Sly and the Family Stone - Hot Fun in the Summertime (1969) Genesis - Misunderstanding (1980) Even Wikipedia points this out
Goo Goo Dolls - Name (1995) [2] EURid - The secret code of the internet (2010) [3]
Oasis - Wonderwall (1995) Caesars - Jerk It Out (2003)
Michael Jackson - Billie Jean (1982) Billy Ocean - Caribbean Queen (1984)
Madonna - Like a Virgin (1984)
Janet Jackson - Rhythm Nation (1989) Michael Jackson - Blood on the Dance Floor (1997) YouTube
Don Moen - Give Thanks (1986)
Written by Henry Smith in 1978
Village People - Go West (1979)
Sweet - The Ballroom Blitz (1973) Theme from The Suite Life of Zack & Cody (2005)
Solomon Linda and the Evening Birds - Mbube (1939)
The Tokens - The Lion Sleeps Tonight (1961)
Steve Miller Band - Swingtown (1977)
Roxette - Jefferson (2001) Groove Coverage - God is a Girl (2002) Explained on Wikipedia
Village People - Go West (1979) Happatai - Yatta (2001) Two obvious Canon in D-inspired songs by bands with a similar gimmick
Nena - 99 Luftballons (1983) OMD - If You Leave (1986) Listen (ogg)
Taco - Puttin' on the Ritz (1983)
Written by Irving Berlin in 1929
The Four Lads - Istanbul (Not Constantinople) (1953)
They Might Be Giants - Istanbul (Not Constantinople) (1990)
Written by Jimmy Kennedy and Nat Simon
Wikipedia mentions reuse by Kennedy and Simon of Berlin's material; possibly authorized
Puff Daddy - It's All About the Benjamins (rock remix) (1998, sometime before 1998 VMAs in September) Marilyn Manson - I Don't Like the Drugs (September 1998)
DragonForce - Through the Fire and Flames (2005) Riyu Kosaka - Honey Punch (2006) Others have noticed
Spandau Ballet - True (1983) Backstreet Boys - I Want It That Way (1999)
Genesis - Jesus He Knows Me (1991) Owl City - Fireflies (2009) Similarity starts immediately after "that man is me"
Jason Mraz - The Remedy (I Won't Worry) (2002) The opening
The Beatles - The Ballad of John and Yoko (1969) ABBA - Ring Ring (1973) Bass line; similar bass lines occur in other Elvis songs
The Offspring - Come Out and Play (1994) Rob Zombie - Superbeast (1999) Chorus
Marilyn Manson - 1996 (1996) "Anti-people" after the latter's second chorus
Paul Simon - 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover (1975) Grover Washington, Jr. feat. Bill Withers - Just the Two of Us (1981)
Fleetwood Mac - Rhiannon (1976) Blondie - Call Me (theme from American Gigolo) (1980)
Blondie - Call Me (1980) Ray Lynch - Celestial Soda Pop (1984) An NESdev BBS member is by far not the only one to notice
Nirvana - Heart-Shaped Box (1993) Other "Heart-Shaped Box" similarities
t.A.T.u. - Я сошла с ума (2000)
t.A.T.u. - All the Things She Said (2002)
Katy Perry - E.T. (2010) YouTube; YTMND Matthew Cole of Slant agrees [3]
TLC - Waterfalls (1995) Lady Gaga - Born This Way (2011) Three lines sound the same[4]
Madonna - Express Yourself (1989) YouTube
Weird Al's parody "Perform This Way" mentions this one
Madonna - Vogue (1990) Felix da Housecat - Silver Screen Shower Scene (2001) "magazine"
Suzanne Vega and Joe Jackson - Left of Center (1986) Maurizio De Jorio (as Max Coveri) - Running in the 90s (1999) Especially the first three notes and repeats thereof in "Left of Center"'s refrain
Eduard Artemyev - Siberiade theme (1979)
PPK - ResuRection (2001)
Lily Allen - Not Fair (2009) YouTube
Coldplay - The Scientist (2002) YouTube
Frank Sinatra - Fly Me to the Moon (1964)
Written by Bart Howard in 1954
Andy Williams - Happy Heart (1969)
Petula Clark - Happy Heart (1969)
The Everly Brothers - Let It Be Me (1960)
Gilbert Bécaud in 1955
Second half of verses in "Happy Heart"
Elmer Bernstein - Theme from The Magnificent Seven (1960) Vanessa Carlton - A Thousand Miles (2001)
Monty Norman - James Bond Theme (1962) Michael Jackson - Is It Scary (1998)
Written by Jackson, Harris, and Lewis in 1993
Bruce Hornsby and the Range - The Way It Is (1986) End to end: MJ then Bruce
Manfred Mann's Earth Band - Blinded by the Light (1976)
Written by Bruce Springsteen in 1972
"Weird Al" Yankovic - Good Old Days (1988). I imagine that Yankovic's intended targets were "That's Why I'm Here" and "Only One" from the album That's Why I'm Here (1985) by James Taylor
Enya - Only Time (2000) Faith Hill - Like We Never Loved at All (2005)
Maria Muldaur - Midnight at the Oasis (1974) Heart - Magic Man (1976) Same melody used for "Come on" in both songs
Pin-Occhio - Tu Tatuta Tuta Ta (1993) Unabomber - 6Etero 6Gay (2001) Both might be copying Living on Video by Trans-X
Billy Joel - The Stranger (1977) Ron Wasserman - Go Go Power Rangers (1994) Listen (ogg) Start after the slow part
Pin-Occhio - Zero G (1995) Rammstein - Du hast (1997) Listen (ogg) Play Zero G at 112% speed
Ministry - Just One Fix (1992) Mentioned in wikipedia:Du hast
Genesis - Tonight (1986) Everclear - Everything to Everyone (1997) Listen (ogg) Compare the overtones of the xylophone part of "Tonight" to the ostinato of "Everything"
Garbage - When I Grow Up (1998) Faith Hill - The Joy of Cola (1999) Baa.
Queen - Bohemian Rhapsody (1975) Brad Kane - One Jump Ahead (reprise) (1992) "...to me."
Spice Girls - Wannabe (1996) Chumbawamba - Amnesia (1997)
Genesis -- Land of Confusion (1986) Michael Boyd and Gary Remal Malkin - Theme from Unsolved Mysteries (1987)
Pure Prairie League - Amie (1972) Eric Clapton - Lay Down Sally (1977) verses
Jim Croce - I'll Have to Say I Love You in a Song (1974) "Weird Al" Yankovic - Since You've Been Gone (1996) Doesn't sound like a style parody
Berlin - Take My Breath Away (1986) Lady Gaga - Paparazzi (2008) YouTube
Benny Mardones - Into the Night (1980) Phil Collins - One More Night (1984) Refrains
Don McLean - And I Love You So (1970) Billy Joel - The Longest Time (1983) "I don't let the evening get me down"
John Mellencamp - Cherry Bomb (1987) James Otto - Just Got Started Lovin' You (2007)
The Offspring - Gone Away (1997) Linkin Park - New Divide (2009) YouTube
Ke$ha - Your Love Is My Drug (2010) Rihanna - We Found Love YouTube "The way I'm feeling"
America - Daisy Jane (1975) Janet Jackson - Let's Wait Awhile (1986)
Tears for Fears - Everybody Wants to Rule the World (1985) XTC - King for a Day (1989)
Gracie Films ident (1987) Go West - King of Wishful Thinking (1990)
Lenny Kravitz - Fly Away (1998) Katy Perry - Wide Awake (2012) YouTube
AC/DC - Highway to Hell (1979) Randy Houser - How Country Feels (2012)
Raymond Scott - Powerhouse B (1937) Marius Constant - Milieu 2 (1960) Bass lines in the second part of each
Whitney Houston - One Moment in Time (1988) Rascal Flatts - I Won't Let Go (2011)
Oompa Loompas - Oompa-Loompa-Doompa-Dee-Doo (1971) Killer Tracks - Family & Friends (1990) Lexus has used "Family & Friends" in its "December to Remember" campaign

Go ahead and suggest additions or corrections on the talk page.


  1. This demo uses primarily the lyrics from "Just Dance" and the accompaniment from "Tik Tok." Examples exist that balance the two songs more fairly, but many are now blocked in the United States because they contain excerpts of the respective songs' music videos.
  2. All copies of "Permanent December" on YouTube have likely been pitch-shifted. Comments/descriptions claim the existence of a "block" flag in the song's Content ID policy (citation needed), and Miley Cyrus's Vevo channel does not include the song.
  3. Cole, Matthew (August 22, 2010). "Katy Perry: Teenage Dream Album Review". Slant Magazine. Retrieved February 24, 2011.
  4. The three lines are "But all the praying just ain't helping at all", "You ask if their refrigerator is running", and "My mama told me when I was young"

See also

External links