Simon and Garfunkel vs. fun. – Song Parallels
When critics write about fun.'s music, they often talk about the band's obvious influences -- particularly the way their stacked vocal harmonies mimic the sound of Queen. But the title track from their 'Some Nights' album brings to mind an older -- and far folkier -- act.
We're talking about Simon and Garfunkel, whose final album, 1970's 'Bridge Over Troubled Water,' found the duo working within a variety of different sounds and genres -- arguably none more experimental than 'Cecilia,' a brief uptempo number built on an unorthodox rhythm track assembled from various sounds (including thigh slapping and banging on a piano bench) that were looped in the studio.
With its unusual 'drum' sound, not to mention other various bits of studio trickery that included a sped-up xylophone, 'Cecilia' didn't sound like anything else on the radio -- but with Simon and Garfunkel at the peak of their commercial power, the single still peaked at No. 4 in the spring of 1970. And its legacy lives on, as evidenced by fun.'s 'Some Nights,' which not only mimics that galloping 'Cecilia' drumbeat (albeit presumably with far fewer thighs involved), but borrows the chorus melody in the bargain.
Neither Paul Simon nor the members of fun. have commented on the similarities between the songs, but that hasn't stopped a number of people from calling attention to them -- a YouTube search yields several mashups and live performances that blend 'Cecilia' and 'Some Nights.' Have a listen to the clips below, and see how many parallels you can draw.
Listen to Simon and Garfunkel, 'Cecilia'
Listen to fun., 'Some Nights'