Songs that "sound" like covers of another band or group, but aren't

On the way to work this morning, I was listening to Queen and the song “You’re My Best Friend” came on. Now I know it is an original song written by John Deacon, who wrote it about his wife. But to me, it sounds like a cover of a Partridge Family song.

Anyone else have songs that fit this category to them?

Kelly Clarkson’s Breakaway always sounded like some sort of Irish drinking song to me.
Whenever she gets to the chorus I just picture a tavern full of people swaying back and forth with their beer steins.
Pink’s What About Us sounds like a number from the Phantom of the Opera to me.

Good Times by Eric Burden and The Animals - aside from being a rather annoying earworm - just sounds out of place in their oeuvre. Its almost as if the band had all gone out one evening to watch a musical and then decided they were going to record one of the numbers they had heard.


Great observation about You’re My Best Friend. I can totally hear it!Laurie playing the opening notes on the keyboard, Shirley and the gang singing the backup “you’re making me live now honey”. Keith hamming it up. I’ll never hear that song again without thinking about that:p

I bet if we think about it, a lot of Queen songs sound like they could be covers, because they have such a diverse catalog. Crazy Little Thing Called Love is pretty much Elvis, though I’m sure that’s deliberate.
Good Old Fashioned Loverboy sounds like it came right out of Vaudeville or something.

America doing Neil Young with Horsy No Name.

Edward Sheerhan doing a TLC song with I Love Your Body

I thought that the Mamas and the Papas sang “I Dig Rock and Roll Music” until a few years ago. In fact it was Peter, Paul, and Mary who sang it. The Wikipedia entry for the song says that the first verse of the song is supposed to sound like the Mamas and the Papas, the second verse is supposed to sound like Donovan, and the third verse is supposed to sound like the Beatles:

When I first heard* Surrender* by Cheap Trick, I was sure it was a new Who song. But then the vocals kicked in…Robin Zander has a good voice, but he ain’t Roger Daltrey.

To echo what’s been said above, very good call, OP, about “You’re My Best Friend” and the Partridge Family. Nobody has ever called out the etymological derivation of the word partridge in connection with that show… which could be done for the irony, as it would change the avian connotation from euphony to cacophony.

I forget where I read someone’s comment that the song “it”, finale to The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway by Genesis, sounds like theme music to some 1970s action-adventure TV show. I think that’s very accurate.

That etymology:

Nice call.

In the same vein, The Rick and Morty Theme Song has always sounded like some late 70’s NBC Sci-Fi show that lasted only 11 episodes.

Like Fantastic Voyage or something

“All Mixed Up”, the last song on the first Cars album, sounds to me like it could be a Styx song.

Here’s a link to “it” by Genesis: (typography copied from the original album cover)
You can’t just search for “it” without "it"s getting lost in the noise, given Google’s search predilections.

it’s scrambled eggs

Definitely got to agree with that.

This was done to death in 1992, but Plush by Stone Temple Pilots sounded like it was sung by Pearl Jam.

It’s weird that you’d say that. Fastball’s “The Way” always reminded me of some NBC Saturday morning live-action show, dimly remembered, about some kids and one adult who traveled the highways and byways of America in a Winnebago RV helping strangers, kind of like SHAZAM but minus the superhero.

I thought “Come On Eileen” was by Queen the first time I heard it.

The first time I saw KD Lang (on the Tonight Show w. Johnny Carson, circa 1985), I thought she was comedian Kate Clinton doing some kind of send-up of Patsy Cline. By the time the song ended I realized she was dead serious. I’ve been a fan ever since.

1st & 4th verses mention no bands. 2nd is tribute to Mamas & Papas. 3rd is Donovan and Beatles, a couplet each. BTW on the PP&M IN CONCERT album, Paul calls rock-n-roll “children’s music” but I DIG R&R was their biggest hit. Go figure.

You beat me to it. I’ll also point to Stealer’s Wheel STUCK IN THE MIDDLE, so Dylan-ish. And Terry Stafford’s SUSPICION, so Elvis-ish. And of course Bruce Johnson, in India with the Beatles et al, taught them how to sing like Beach Boys for BACK IN THE USSR.

Blue Öyster Cult’s “You’re Not the One (I Was Looking For)” is a deliberate imitation of The Cars. The story goes that the band was doing the song as a joke in rehearsal, and the producer, who wasn’t familiar with The Cars, encouraged them to record it for real.

Danko Jones’ “You Are My Woman” - the lead singer said he was tired of comparisons to Thin Lizzy just because he was a person of color fronting a hard rock band, so with this song he was just like, “HERE’S your Thin Lizzy.”

When I first heard “Romeo and Juliet” at first I thought it was an obscure Dylan song. (“Wait… that’s Knopfler’s guitar… this is Dire Straits?”)
(oh, here’s the version I heard; more dylan-ness)

But when I learned that Mark Knopfler had played lead guitar on Dylan’s *Slow Train Coming *album, I figured that the two musicians had rubbed off on each other during that time.

(Whole album not on YouTube, but here’s an out-take)

Ghostbusters / I Want a New Drug is the exception that proves that rule, at least legally.

Ed Sheeran does such great “sound-alike” songs by other artists that by my count he’s been sued at least 4 times for plagiarism. Why this guy remains popular baffles me.