Danny Ross was walking around Brooklyn six months ago, thinking about Ryan Adams’ decision to cover Taylor Swift’s entire “1989” album when the idea hit him: Someone should cover a Ryan Adams album in the style of Taylor Swift.
The more the Melville native thought about it, the more he realized what an inspired idea it was. “I thought, ‘I’m gonna have to do this, aren’t I?’ ” Ross says.
Luckily, Ross and his wife, Jessica Leibowitz, had a band, Babetown, that could take on this project, “1989 Is Hell,” which will hit online stores Aug. 31. “We wanted to make a record as good as the idea,” says Ross, adding that the couple tried out songs from several Adams albums before deciding on “Love Is Hell” because its songs were the closest to pop.
Babetown then matched each song from “Love Is Hell” with a song from Swift’s “1989” album and reworked it in the new pop style. That means “The Shadowlands” takes on bits of “Out of the Woods” and Leibowitz puts Swift-ian vocal phrasing on “Wonderwall.”
The results have already won praise from Adams, who tweeted “I LOVE YOU @Babetowntheband. These covers are SO RAD!”
When Ross saw that, he texted Leibowitz, “I’m literally dying.”