Poll: Did ‘X Factor’ Contestant Drew Ryniewicz Sing ‘Baby’ Better Than Justin Bieber

Bieber Girl

During last night’s “X Factor” audition episode, 14-year-old Justin Bieber superfan Drew Ryniewicz stole the show with a haunting new take on her idol’s biggest hit, “Baby.”

If Justin’s original “Baby” is fluffy, flavorful bubblegum, Drew’s “Baby” is a three-course meal of teenage angst, yearning and obsession. The words “I thought you’d always be mine” are a lot heavier when the arrangement features minor chords on a mournful piano. The cleverest bit is Drew’s take on the chorus, where she flips the melody to include a devastating half-yodel, her voice cracking with each “Baby.”

In other words, the star of Bieber’s “Baby” is singing to a girl at recess. The protagonist in Drew’s version is in her room, anguished and maybe Facebook-stalking her ex. This is dark. And awesome.

All four “X Factor” judges – including LA Ried who signed Bieber to Island/Def Jam – were blown away. L.A. called it “soulful” and “believable.” Nicole Scherzinger and Simon Cowell went further, saying they preferred Drew’s dark spin to Bieber’s recording. “This is exactly what I wanted a 14-year-old to do in this competition,” Cowell gushed. “Most importantly, people your age would buy your version of that song.”

(A-hem, Simon. People twice her age would buy it, too. Race that girl to a studio and release it on iTunes ASAP!)

So now that the professional industry execs have given it two (or eight?) thumbs up, we want to know which version you prefer: Bieber’s upbeat original or Drew’s heartbreaking lament? Vote, after the jump!

(The song begins at the 2:30 mark.)

Leave your comments below! And if you’re looking for yet another awesomely twisted cover of “Baby,” check out NY performance artist Erin Markey’s clever interpretation here.

For more on “X Factor,” give me a follow on Twitter @jambajim.