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All Posts Tagged R&B

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The World's Greatest (R Kelly) | Sounds Like | Mountains (Biffy Clyro)

The World's Greatest by R Kelly Mountains by Biffy Clyro

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The first line of the R Kelly tune is almost identical melodically and lyrically to the first line of the chorus of the Biffy Clyro tune. It's rare that a similarity like this exists both with the melody and lyrics.



Chained To The Rhythm (Katy Perry) | Sounds Like | Love Light in Flight (Stevie Wonder)

Chained To The Rhythm by Katy Perry Love Light in Flight by Stevie Wonder

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The verse vocal melody in Katy Perry's reggae-flavored dance song Chained To The Rhythm is reminiscent of the chorus vocal melody to Stevie Wonder's Love Light in Flight ("Living our lives through a lens" VS "Make me feel like paradise"). Rhythmically, Chained is also similar to Luther Vandross' Don't You Know That, Chaka Khan's Ain't Nobody, and Lionel Ritchie's Running With The Night.

Chained To The Rhythm (:09) VS Love Light in Flight (:35)



Jealous (Nick Jonas) | Sounds Like | Candy (Cameo)

Jealous by Nick Jonas Candy by Cameo

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If you listen to the latter part of the chorus in Jealous, it sounds like the melody in the 1980s song called Candy. Starting at 2:50 to 3:25 on Candy you can actually sing the "your too sexy beautiful" lyrics from Jealous with Candy and the lyrics fit the melody like a glove.



Style (Taylor Swift) | Sounds Like | My Kind of Love (Emeli Sande)

Style by Taylor Swift My Kind of Love by Emeli Sande

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The verse vocal melody to Taylor Swift's chart-topping single Style (released January 27, 2015) from her 1989 album, closely resembles the chorus vocal melody to Emeli Sande's top-40 single My Kind of Love (released June 8, 2012).

Style (:40) VS My Kind of Love (:46)



Hymn For The Weekend (Coldplay) | Sounds Like | Tell Me (Groove Theory)

Hymn For The Weekend by Coldplay Tell Me by Groove Theory

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Coldplay's Hymn for the Weekend (released January 25, 2016) has a similar groove, verse vocal melody, and verse chord progression (relatively speaking) as Groove Theory's mid-90's chart-topper Tell Me (released September 5, 1995). Hymn for the Weekend's chorus vocal melody is also reminiscent of the intro vocal melody to fun's We Are Young, and Fabolous' Throw It In The Bag. Compare the melodies for the lines "[So if by the] time the bar closes and you feel like falling down" with "I-Oh-I-Oh/Got me feeling drunk and high."

Hymn for the Weekend (:44) VS Tell Me (:21) [verse vocal melody and groove]

Hymn for the Weekend (1:48) VS We Are Young (:41) [chorus vocal melody]

Hymn for the Weekend (1:48) VS Throw It In The Bag (Fabolous) (1:37)



Work from Home (Fifth Harmony) | Sounds Like | Love Will Never Do (Janet Jackson)

Work from Home by Fifth Harmony Love Will Never Do (Without You) by Janet Jackson

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Work from Home (:02) VS Love Will Never Do (Without You) (2:35)

Honorable mention:
Rugrats Theme Song



Can't Sleep Love (Pentatonix) | Sounds Like | Love Will Conquer All (Lionel Richie)

Can't Sleep Love by Pentatonix Love Will Conquer All by Lionel Ritchie

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Pentatonix's Can't Sleep Love (released September 4, 2015, as the lead single from their fourth studio album), seems to borrow it groove, tempo, and progression from Lionel Richie's Pop/Soul classic Love Will Conquer All (released July 15, 1986). While the songs are in keys a whole step apart (CSL in G, and LWCA in F), Can't Sleep Love hews closely to Love Will Conquer All's progression (CSL simply substitutes a two minor seventh chord for Richie's four major seventh). In addition, the vocal melody to Can't Sleep Love's later verses (around 1:35, beginning with the line "Kissing in the moonlight") echo Shaggy's Boombastic (:23) (released June 5, 1995).

Can't Sleep Love (:25) VS Love Will Conquer All (:59)

Can't Sleep Love
Key: G
Chord Progression:
Amin7, D7, Gmaj7 (ii7-V7-IM7)

Love Will Conquer All
Key: F
Chord Progression:
Bbmaj7, C7, Fmaj7 (IVM7-V7-IM7)
A7sus4, A7, Dmaj7 (V7sus4/vi, V7/vi, VIM7)



Like I'm Gonna Lose You (Meghan Trainor) | Sounds Like | Bring It on Home to Me (Sam Cooke)

Like I'm Gonna Lose You by Meghan Trainor Bring It on Home to Me by Sam Cooke

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Like I'm Gonna Lose You by Meghan Trainor featuring John Legend (released June 23, 2015) owes a debt of gratitude to numerous 60s Soul/R&B records (including Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell's Your Precious Love). However, Sam Cooke's Bring It on Home to Me (released May 8, 1962) seems the most likely template for Trainor's hit (BIoHtM is actually Cooke's re-working of Charles Brown's 1959 single I Want to Go Home). While the chord changes differ significantly, similarities between LIGLY and BIoHtM include: key (both songs are in C major), meter (both songs are in 12/8 time signature), melody (LIGLY's verse vocal melody is very close to BIoHtM's intro piano melody).

Like I'm Gonna Lose You (:05) VS Bring It on Home to Me (:00)

Honorable mention:
Elvin Bishop's Fooled Around and Fell In Love

Huey Lewis and the News' If This Is It



Hotline Bling (Drake) | Sounds Like | The Hills (The Weeknd)

Hotline Bling by Drake The Hills by The Weeknd

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Canadian rapper Drake's song Hotline Bling (released July 31, 2015) is reminiscent of the Weeknd's The Hills (released May 27, 2015). While keys are a half-step apart (HB: F; TH: Eb), similarities include vocal melodies with the same rhythmic scansion (compare the rhythm of HB's verse melody to TH's chorus melody), lyrics (HB: "You used to call me on my cell phone" VS TH: "I only call you when it's half-past five"), and drum track (especially the hi-hat patterns). [Thanks to AJ Halliwell for suggesting this one!]

Hotline Bling (:32) VS The Hills (:42)

Hotline Bling
Key: F/Dmin
Verse Chord Progression:
Dmin, Amin (vi, iii)
Verse Vocal Melody:
6-6-5-1-7-6-5-7-5 ("You used to call me on my cell phone")

The Hills
Key: Eb/Cmin
Chorus Chord Progression:
Cmin, Ab, Fmin, Ab (vi-IV-ii-IV)
Verse Vocal Melody:
3-3-3-5-3-1-1-2-6 ("I only call you when it's half-past five")

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