It turns out Britney Spears‘ 1998 “…Baby One More Time” works great as a stripped-down acoustic jam. At least when it’s done by Ed Sheeran, who covered the classic pop hit as part of Spotify’s Singles program.
Never mind that at the time of the song’s release, Sheeran was a mere seven years-old. Recorded at Spotify’s New York City studios, the “Shape Of You” singer gives the track a raw, emotive rework, belting Spears’ iconic lyrics with only acoustic guitar strums as his backing. Covering such a famous track is a risky endeavor — Spears’ original version peaked at Billboard No. 1 in 1999 — but it appears to pay off for Sheeran.
Spotify announced its Singles program — where artists release one new song and one cover through the streaming giant — last November. Sheeran pairs his Spears cover with a Spotify-exclusive recording of “Castle On The Hill.”
Check out Sheeran’s rendition of “Baby One More Time,” the Singles program’s 100th release, below: