Adam Lyons Schlesinger was an American singer-songwriter, record producer, and guitarist. He won three Emmys, a Grammy, and the ASCAP Pop Music Award, and was nominated for Oscar, Tony and Golden Globe Awards.
He was a founding member of the bands Fountains of Wayne, Ivy, and Tinted Windows, and was a key songwriting contributor and producer for Brooklyn-based synth-pop duo Fever High. Schlesinger grew up in Manhattan and Montclair, New Jersey.
Schlesinger grew up in Manhattan and Montclair, New Jersey, and he attended Montclair High School. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Williams College in philosophy.
Schlesinger was a cousin of Jon Bernthal, an actor known for his roles as Shane Walsh on the television series The Walking Dead and The Punisher/Frank Castle in Netflix’s Daredevil and The Punisher. He was the grandson of Murray Bernthal (1911–2010), a musician and producer who was long active in Syracuse, New York.
In addition to writing and co-producing the title song to That Thing You Do!, Schlesinger composed “Master of the Seas” for Ice Age: Continental Drift performed by Jennifer Lopez, Peter Dinklage and others. He wrote and produced three songs for Music and Lyrics, and his music has also been featured in films such as Shallow Hal (which he scored with Ivy); Robots; There’s Something About Mary; Me, Myself & Irene; Josie and the Pussycats; Scary Movie; Art School Confidential; Fever Pitch; The Manchurian Candidate; Because of Winn-Dixie; Orange County; Two Weeks Notice, and others.
Songs performed by other artists
- “Our Own World” and “I Was There” and “House of Broken Gingerbread” by The Monkees
- “Just the Girl” and “I’ll Take My Chances” for The Click Five
- “Everybody Loves Music” by Nicki Minaj, Pat Monahan, and Ken Jeong on “The Billboard Music Awards”
- “I Guess It’s American” for Superdrag (co-written with John Davis)
- “High School Never Ends” with Bowling for Soup (co-written with Jaret Reddick)
- “I Am What I Am” for the Jonas Brothers
- “Hackensack” (Fountains of Wayne cover) by Katy Perry
- “Perfect Night” by Sarah Silverman and will.i.am
- “1-800 Clap Your Hands”, “Marisol”, “You Get Me Through”, “Double Talk”, and
- “Jerkface Loser Boyfriend” by Emily Osment
- “Work to Do” for America
- Eight songs for Stephen Colbert’s television special A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All! performed by Stephen Colbert, Jon Stewart, Feist, John Legend, Willie Nelson, Elvis Costello and Toby Keith (co-written with David Javerbaum)
- “Barbie Eat a Sandwich” and “My Problems” with Care Bears on Fire
- “A Little More Us” by Stereo Skyline
- “Just Like a Rockstar” by The Fresh Beat Band
- “Stay in Our PJs” by Big Time Rush
- “I’ll Say It” by Kathy Griffin
- “Text Me Merry Christmas” by Straight No Chaser feat. Kristen Bell
- “Tantalized”, “All Work”, “That’s So Typical”, “Spit It Out”, “Looks Good on Paper” by Fever High
On January 30, 1999, Schlesinger married Katherine Michel, a graphic designer and Yale graduate. They met in 1996 at WXOU Radio Bar, a bar that Schlesinger used to frequent with Fountains of Wayne co-founder Chris Collingwood when they were starting the band. They divorced in 2013. Schlesinger and Michel have two daughters, Sadie and Claire.
On April 1, 2020, Schlesinger died at a hospital in Poughkeepsie, New York, at the age of 52 as a result of health complications caused by COVID-19, amid a pandemic of the disease in the state. He had been hospitalized and placed on a ventilator two weeks before his death.
- Full Name: Adam Lyons Schlesinger
- Birth Date: October 31, 1967
- Birth Place: New York City, New York, U.S.
- Died: April 1, 2020 (aged 52), Poughkeepsie, New York, U.S.
- Cause of death: Complications from COVID-19
- Occupation: Musician, Singer, Songwriter, Composer, Producer
- Years Active: 1990–2020
- Awards: Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Award for Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics
- Genres: Power pop, Alternative rock, Geek rock
- Instruments: Bass guitar, Vocals
- Associated acts: Fountains of Wayne, Tinted Windows (since 2009), Ivy (since 1994), Fever High
- Spouse: Katherine Michel (30 January 1999 – 2013) (divorced) (2 children)
- Grandparents are former concert musicians
- Has a daughter, born in 2003.
- Is the bassist for the band Fountains of Wayne, and the main songwriter along with guitarist Chris Collingwood.
- Is the bassist in the band Ivy, in addition to Fountains of Wayne
- Touring with Fountains of Wayne through to the end of August [July 2004]