Ryan Adams says he wanted Taylor Swift covers album to sound like Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Nebraska’

Adam's cover album of Taylor Swift's '1989' is released today

Ryan Adams has explained that he wanted his version of Taylor Swift‘s ‘1989’ album to sound like Bruce Springsteen‘s ‘Nebraska’.

Released in 1982, ‘Nebraska’ was Springsteen’s sixth studio album and his first acoustic record. The album’s ten tracks were recorded on a four-track cassette player.

Ryan Adams releases his full cover version of Swift’s ‘1989’ today. The record is currently only available digitally, with CD and vinyl releases coming soon.

Adams will appear on Zane Lowe’s Beats1 radio show tonight to discuss the record in full. In an exclusive extract shared with NME, he explains how Springsteen inspired the sound of the record.

“I got back to LA, it was around Christmas time. I was totally bummed out and I bought a four track cassette recorder. And I was like, I’m going to make ‘1989’ like ‘Nebraska’ style. Bruce Springsteen ‘Nebraska’. Just acoustic guitar, bunch of spring reverb, just me.”


Asked why he decided to record the album, he continues “I don’t know why I had this idea,” adding “I was going through a sort of difficult time in my life.” Adams then explains the beauty he found in Swift’s songwriting, describing the tracks as “flawless” and “perfect.”

“I’ve always been interested in Taylor’s music. A lot of those songs are pretty flawless, they’re so well written, they’re so clean. Like ‘White Horse.’ It bothers me so much, because it’s really a perfect song. If you listen to it, if you ever play it on acoustic guitar, learn it and sing it, it’s almost impossible to sing that chorus, if you can fit it to your range, and not get a lump in your throat. You just can’t do it.”

“I spent maybe a week and a half learning the songs on the periphery,” he continues. “I started to get the general idea and that’s when I started looking at the lyrics and was like, this is gonna be insane.”

Asked whether he was surprised by the response, which included Taylor Swift herself describing the project as “surreal and dreamlike,” he replied “I didn’t really think anybody would pay any attention to it.”

Ryan Adams announced that he would be recording the cover version at the start of August and has been keeping fans updated with his progress, posting various behind the scenes video clips and photos on Twitter and Instagram.

Last week, Adams revealed the release date. Taylor Swift tweeted her response to the news, writing, “Ryan’s music helped shape my songwriting. This is surreal and dreamlike.”

Adams has already shared previews of ‘Welcome To New York’, ‘Bad Blood’, ‘All You Had To Do Was Stay’, ‘Out Of The Woods’, ‘Wildest Dreams’ and ‘Shake It Off’.

Listen to Ryan Adams’ ‘Bad Blood’ below: