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Fountains of Wayne’s Adam Schlesinger dies of COVID-19 complications at 52

The Emmy-winning songwriter had been admitted to hospital two weeks ago.

April 01, 2020
Fountains of Wayne’s Adam Schlesinger dies of COVID-19 complications at 52 Scott Gries / Getty Images

Adam Schlesinger, a founding member of the New Jersey pop-rock band Fountains of Wayne and an Emmy-winning songwriter in his own right, has died. He was 52. Schlesinger had been on a respirator in hospital for the past two weeks after testing positive for COVID-19. His lawyer confirmed to the New York Times that Schlesinger died of complications relating to the novel coronavirus.

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Best known as the songwriter behind Fountains of Wayne, who scored a huge hit with 2003's "Stacy's Mom" but have a criminally underrated catalog outside of that, Schlesinger also had hugely influential and successful career writing for film, TV, and theatre. He wrote two songs for the iconic 2000 movie Josie and the Pussycats and garnered Oscar and Golden Globe nominations for writing the title track for Tom Hanks' 1996 musical comedy That Thing You Do!. A musical he wrote with Sarah Silverman, The Bedwetter, was set to debut in New York this spring.

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"I am grasping for the right words," Dashboard Confessional's Chris Carrabba wrote on Twitter shortly after the news broke on Wednesday evening. "[...]I knew him best as a mentor, and a friend. We must take this seriously. People are sick and dying. It is hard to stay locked indoors but lives will be saved. Take care of each other. Rest In Peace, my dear friend."

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Fountains of Wayne’s Adam Schlesinger dies of COVID-19 complications at 52