Watch All-American Rejects' Gypsy-Punk Cover of Britney's "Womanizer"

December 22, 2008 2:45 PM ET

Why cover "Womanizer," asks All-American Rejects' Tyson Ritter? "Because of its deep political connotations? No. It's because we can do it better than Britney." Then the frontman breaks out the polka-style hand organ and the band digs into an eerie acoustic rendition of Spears' hit from Circus (with a dash of "Happy Together"). Toss Madonna and a mustache in there, and Tyson is the new Eugene Hutz (of Gogol Bordello fame). Watch the performance (from Yahoo!'s Pepsi Smash show) above. Extra points to the band for using beer bottles as percussion.

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Song Stories

“Bird on a Wire”

Leonard Cohen | 1969

While living on the Greek island of Hydra, Cohen was battling a lingering depression when his girlfriend handed him a guitar and suggested he play something. After spotting a bird on a telephone wire, Cohen wrote this prayer-like song of guilt. First recorded by Judy Collins, it would be performed numerous times by artists incuding Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker and Rita Coolidge. "I'm always knocked out when I hear my songs covered or used in some situation," Cohen told Rolling Stone. "I've never gotten over the fact that people out there like my music."

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