Nine songs that sound like they came from better-known musical artists

You think you might know who performed these songs, but maybe they just sound like some other band.
Greta Van Fleet in concert
Greta Van Fleet in concert / Buda Mendes/GettyImages
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THE RECORDS – “Starry Eyes” (1978)

The Byrds released “So You Want to Be a Rock ‘n Roll Star” in 1967. Eleven years later, English band The Records released essentially the same song, only this time it was called “Starry Eyes.” It became their biggest hit.

Unlike the other songs discussed so far, “Starry Eyes” doesn’t sound like The Byrds because of the vocals. Though John Wicks does sound a lot like Roger McGuinn and the backing harmonies are also very much alike, it is guitar player Huw Gower’s lead that mimics the Byrds’ sound most closely. The Records weren’t simply playing with this sound. They kind of always sounded like the Byrds. Just never as close as on “Starry Eyes.”


John Cafferty formed the Beaver Brown Band in 1972. They played basic rock & roll. Their guitar/bass/drums sound was bolstered by the addition of a keyboard player and a saxophonist. They achieved some success playing up and down the Northeastern USA. Does that remind you of any other band?

Narragansett, Rhode Island, where the Beaver Brown Band began, is about 200 miles up the coast from Asbury Park, and Cafferty and his mates must have been paying attention to what Bruce Springsteen was doing with his E Street Band. Their big break came when the band was recruited to provide the music for Martin Davidson’s 1983 movie Eddie and the Cruisers. Davidson wanted a Springsteen sound-alike and Cafferty delivered.

He played an assortment of covers and originals, many of which captured the Springsteen sound. His original “On the Dark Side” did it the best. Steve Burks’ opening keyboard motif sounds just like Roy Bittan.

Before the final verse, Michael Antunes blows a sax solo and then joins in on the outro just like Clarence Clemons. And Cafferty has his voice tuned to unbridled Bruce, reserved for the most basic of E Street rockers. It landed in the top ten on the Billboard charts, something Bruce himself had only managed once by that point.