What Are Zooey Deschanel's Best Cover Versions?

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‘New Girl’ star Zooey Deschanel is a woman of many talents. While many know her as the quirky school teacher Jess in the hit US TV show or from roles in films such as 500 Days of Summer and Almost Famous, the actress has also built up a respectable singing career as part of indie pop duo She & Him.

Zooey DeschanelActress and singer Zooey Deschanel 

Last night (August 12) the pair - consisting of Deschanel and multi-instrumentalist M.Ward - announced plans to release their fifth album, Classics, later this year.

The record will be the duo’s first since signing to Columbia Records earlier this summer and will feature 13 covers of iconic songs recorded live and accompanied by a 20-piece orchestra, according to Rolling Stone.

The album won’t be the first time Deschanel has experimented with putting her own spin on other artists’ songs - the 34-year-old actress has built up a reputation for her unique and daring interpretations of classic tracks.

Ahead of the new album, Contact Music examines some of the star’s most noted cover versions:

‘I Put A Spell On You’

Arguably one of the duo’s more famous covers, She & Him recorded their electrifying rendition of the classic Screaming Jay Hawkins track in 2010 for a Starbucks compilation. Flaunting the singer’s range and showing off some rather impressive vocal acrobatics (not to mention Ward’s cleverly understated guitar work) the haunting track brought the pair a new audience after a show-stopping live performance of the track on Conan later that year.

More: Prince Releases Full Duet With Zooey Deschanel

‘A Very She & Him Christmas’

Following in the footsteps of classic artists such as Elvis Presley and Bing Crosby, She & Him decided to release their very own Christmas album in 2011.

Met with generally good reviews, A Very She & Him Christmas saw the duo tackle festive favourites including ‘Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree’, ‘Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas’ and ‘Baby It’s Cold Outside’ - the singer having 'accidentally' duetted the latter track with her co-star Will Ferrell in shower scene of their 2003 film Elf.

She & HimM.Ward and Zooey Deschanel are indie pop duo She & Him

‘What’s So Funny ‘Bout Peace, Love & Understanding?’

In 2009, She & Him appeared alongside Rilo Kiley singer Jenny Lewis and Jakob Dylan (son of legendary songwriter Bob) in a special episode of Elvis Costello’s television series Spectacle.

After performing their single ‘Change Is Hard’ with Costello, the pair joined their fellow guests and host in a rousing rendition of the Nick Lowe-penned track (and early Costello single) ‘What’s So Funny About Peace, Love & Understanding?’

While only singing backing vocals on the cover, Deschanel and Lewis can be seen having a ball dancing on stage and contributing lush harmonies to the song’s big choruses.

 Next Page: Zooey covers The Smiths, The Beach Boys and more…  

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