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‘Stacy’s Mom’ Singer, Emmy Winner Adam Schlesinger of Fountains of Wayne Passes Away From Coronavirus

April 1, 2020 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Fountains of Wayne Adam Schlesinger

Adam Schlesinger, the co-founder of Fountains of Wayne who became part of 2000s rock lore with “Stacy’s Mom,” has passed away from COVID-19 complications. TMZ reports that Schlesinger’s lawyer confirmed that the singer died on Wednesday at the age of 52.

Schlesinger had been hospitalized in upstate New York after contracting the novel coronavirus two weeks ago, and had been put onto a ventilator. His girlfriend had said he was sedated and in critical condition on Tuesday, with some slight improvements that had them “cautiously optimistic” before he got worse on Wednesday and passed.

Schlesinger co-founded Fountains of Wayne with Chris Collingwood in 1995 and took inspiration for their sound from the pop rock of the Kinks and the Cars. The band quickly became popular with critics but didn’t break through into mainstream pop culture consciousness until the 2003 song “Stacy’s Mom” off their third studio album Welcome Interstate Managers became a major hit. A power pop song about a teenage boy with a crush on his girlfriend’s mother, the earworm was boosted by a music video starring supermodel Rachel Hunter and made it to #21 on the Billboard Hot 100 amid heavy rotation on MTV and VH1. “Stacy’s Mom” was nominated for a Grammy for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group and Fountains of Wayne was nominated for Best New Artist.

The group would never find the same success as they did with “Stacy’s Mom,” leading them to be placed in the infamous “one hit wonder” category, although they continued making music. 2007 saw the release of Traffic and Weather which made it to #97 on the Billboard 200, while 2011’s Sky Full of Holes hit #37. The band largely called it quits after that.

In addition to his work with Fountains of Wayne, Schlesinger had an Oscar nomination to his name for writing the title track to Tom Hanks’ 1996 music comedy That Thing You Do! as well as two other songs for the film. He also had a Daytime Emmy nod for Outstanding Original Song after he penned the “Elmo The Musical” theme for Sesame Street. He and David Javerbaum were nominated for two Tony Awards for their 2008 musical Cry-Baby, and won an Emmy in 2012 for Outstanding Music And Lyrics for the Neil Patrick Harris-performed “It’s Not Just For Gays Anymore” for that year’s Tony Awards. Other Emmy nominations came in 2016, 2017, and 2019 for his work on The CW’s musical comedy Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.

On behalf of 411, our condolences to the family, friends and fans of Mr. Schlesinger.