The Unfathomable Reality of Loss: Adam Schlesinger 1967-2020

The Unfathomable Reality of Loss: Adam Schlesinger 1967-2020

My friend Adam Schlesinger is dead.  To write those words is to engage the impossible; to read that sentence, to see the way the letters fit together, is obscene and unnatural. Even as I write this I have to avert my eyes from that foul spot on the computer screen.

As long as there was a “me,” there was a me with Adam. When my mother went into labor,  my sister stayed with Adam’s parents, Bobbi and Steve Schlesinger. I was born the following day on December 21st at Beth Israel Hospital. I came home to W. 79th Street on Christmas Day. At some point during that bitterly cold last week of 1968, I was swaddled and placed on a rug alongside Adam and Jonny Small, both a year older than me.  While our parents probably smoked “grass” and ate smoked fish from Zabar’s,  our infant brains crafted the concept of friendship out of the awareness of each other’s reality. For the next 51 years, the three of us were “best friends” and all other friendships were classified as “new friends.”  An unfair, but accurate, category for those that have known us for forty plus years.

That Adam was an incredible songwriter/musician is not a secret.  So many wonderful tributes to his professional accomplishments have been written in the last weeks.  He would have loved them all.  But, for any Upper West Side born, Jewish kid of our age, there could be no honor greater than the write-up Adam received in The New Yorker (a virtual Erase All for any parental disappointment). We spent our childhoods buried in that magazine’s pages, making scrapbooks filled with cut-out cartoons. We got in trouble for charging collected editions of Ziegler, George Booth, Ed Koran, Saul Steinberg to my father’s work account at Madison’s Stationary store; we were masters at counting the number of “Nina’s” in an Al Hirshfeld cover. From seven years old on, we had so many obsessions with both the adult ephemera that circulated around us and the whispered cool things that we garnered from my older sister: Doonesbury, Hair!, Pauline Kael, Kangol caps, Sparky Lyle, The World According To Garp, B. Kliban, Hot Tuna, stickers that read “Male Chauvinist Pig!”, Rugger Shirts, Saturday Night Live, WPLJ, the never-ending soundtrack of the Beatles that became almost a physical part of our brain’s grey matter and so much more.    What we read and devoured we barely understood, but it was our way of navigating and making sense of the fractious landscape of 1970s America. Our parents, loving as they were, were very very hands-off.  For the rest of our lives references to this material circulated daily, as sort of a secret language between the two of us. Neither of us could make it through a BBQ  without shouting “DAWN ALREADY?!?!”; Steve Martin quotes colored every conversation we ever had from age 8 until Adam died. (Our parents were so irritated by our constant  imitations that they once threatened, over a shared dinner, to ban us from seeing each other if we could not go an hour without an “Excuuuuuuuuse Me!”)

Adam would be the first to admit that he never would have become a musician had he grown up in the internet age.  Our childhood was spent DOING stuff so as not to be bored; and often the stuff we did was a mirror of the adult world that we were desperate to enter. We were the Joseph Mengele of Phylum Annelida, with our horrifying “Worm Hospital.”   We pretended to be twins, wearing matching rugger shirts and Kangols, and went to department stores hoping someone would ask us if we were twins.  We took my mother’s graphic design books of fonts and Letraset and made-up band names for hours on end. (“The Forgotten Broccoli” had a logo of a floret hidden under a napkin.)   We took our allowance money, tried to be sophisticated and bought rock candy at the hip coffee shop, BEANS.  We collected the names of expensive hi-fi stereo and bicycle equipment (Macintosh, Teac, Campagnolo, Trek, Denon, Marantz…). We did pencil fights.  As we got older we listened to records for hours, sucking the marrow out of liner notes and record covers for all the secret hints of lives so much cooler than ours.  We spent a fortune calling into Video Jukebox so we could see Malcolm McLaren’s Buffalo Girls video.  We played basketball in a churchyard with a machine that sold small bottles of coke rather than cans.  We gathered stacks of quarters and haunted the Asteroids machine at a head shop called The Inner Eye (where tough teenagers would try to menace us by saying “Yo, lemme get a laser?”) And, at any loose-ends moment, whether we were 8 or 13, Adam would play the piano.  Endlessly. Sometimes he would make the excuse that he “had to practice.”  Either way, it meant he was locked into what he was doing and suddenly, I was on the outside.  That was the time I would pick up a Mad Magazine and chuckle at a Don Martin strip.

I was the first of the three of us to hit puberty (at age 9). It was almost as if my body wanted to make sure I was not left behind as Adam and Jonny were both a year older and a couple of grades ahead of me.  A lot of friendships would have fallen apart in that time when age and grades and weird hierarchies mean so much.  But, it never happened.  If anything, Adam was sort of proud of the fact that I was more mature than my years — that I was the first to shave, the first to lose my virginity, the guy who took the 66 bus to Manhattan to hang out with my NY friends.  He once came to pick me up at school in my last days of eighth grade, and told me how bad he felt for me because I just looked like an adult among children.

I was proud of Adam’s musicianship, and would boast — “He’s a musical genius! He can play anything!” — to anyone that would listen.  It just astonished me how he naturally saw all the layers to a song, the mechanics of what made things work.  It didn’t matter what the genre was — rock songs, three-chord punk, Sugar Hill era rap — he knew what was good and what was not good. He was not a big fan of my Clash or Sex Pistols records and  I could not handle his affection for Rush and The Cars; however, we shared love for Devo, Joe Jackson, The Police and Oingo Boingo.  Adam could lift up anything, a kazoo, an oboe, and not only play it, but have a sense of ownership about it.  I had no doubt whatsoever that he was going to be a professional musician and neither did he.  For us, as weird as it sounds, being an internationally respected musician seemed pretty commonplace. After all, Jonny Small’s father was a film composer who did Klute and Marathon Man and that cool couple who would come over for dinner and imitate polar bear noises? Well, that was the world-famous jazz duo Jackie Cain and Roy Kral.   I, on the other hand, had no musical acumen. Our shared piano teacher, mercifully, advised my parents to let me quit. I was, however, deeply invested in how my musical taste defined me, how it made me appear to others.   By 6th grade, I was going to be punk rock.  It was pretty hard in the suburbs to know exactly what that meant, but I was going to spend a lot of time figuring it out. (I made many mis-steps btw.)  Adam, ever loyal and never one to dress in some “sub-culture” costume,  was never embarrassed by me, even when I painted a white line on my nose like Adam Ant. (Like I said, mis-steps.)

During High School and College we were, for the most part, separated by geography; however, we kept in contact in ways that I can’t even understand now, given that we could not afford big long-distance bills and there was no email. During summers and vacations, we managed to see each other. After my first year in high school, we went to a Bennington summer program together where we smoked endless cigarettes, invented intricate inside jokes, listened to the Violent Femmes on repeat and he convinced me to sing a blues song about nipples at the summers-end concert (which is very odd considering that the only genre of music that Adam hated was the blues, and I was a truly terrible singer). During college, I visited he and Jonny in their tiny apartment on the Upper East Side where Adam hid his smoking and tormented Jonny about the way in which he ate his cereal.  When I had a terrible, wrenching break up with my long time girlfriend during my senior year in college, Adam called me every day. (Years later I would repay this favor when Adam had his first terrible breakup. We spent hours talking as he wept, raged and smoked so many cigarettes that he got the dreaded “dry socket” they warn you about when you have a wisdom tooth removed.)   At an age when so many relationships, born in youth, were cast away as the scent of adulthood approached, Adam and I were always astonished how we instantly slipped back into the deep bonds of friendship.  We took pride announcing “This is my BEST friend,”  when introducing each other — as if it were a professional title like ESQ or DR..

A story that was told during our youth had to do with Jonny’s great grandfather.   He made bustles, those padded garments, made from whalebone, that added “fullness” to the back of women’s garments in the mid 19th century.  Apparently, the great grandfather was friends with a Guggenheim who proposed a new venture in copper mining.  Jonny’s great-grandfather refused. He believed bustles were a safe and stable investment: “Women will always wear bustles!” He was reported to have said.  I want to believe that Adam learned from this failure of imagination. In the early 90s, Adam’s band Pinwheel went into the studio with some famous, British producer. The experience was a complete disaster and left Adam in a scary contractual limbo where he could not front another band for a certain time period.  No worries.  Unlike Jonny’s great grandfather, Adam just diversified his talents as a musician.  He figured out all the other stuff: he wrote jingles, finagled publishing deals, took on session work as a multi-instrumentalist. In the process, he grew a huge network of musicians, songwriters, executives, lawyers and engineers, many of whom became life-long friends and collaborators. (It was out of this period that he joined IVY and began working with composer Steven Gold.) For the rest of his life, Adam always had ten jobs going — plays, commercials, bands, TV shows — not to mention buying real estate, investing in bars, and developing some great interior design skills.

I lived in the East Village at the time.  Adam lived in the West.  He spent long mornings at Le Bonnebeirre(Sp?) smoking cigarettes, eating scrambled eggs and reading the New York Times.  We would meet at Marion’s for drinks, celebrate a birthday at Raoul’s and sometimes sneak out to a fancy OTB near Wall Street for club sandwiches and dollar bets.  We found Hackensack Used Furniture (actually located in Paramus) and loaded up on cheap-as-dirt Eames chairs, panoramic photos and an amateur acrylic portrait of Telly Savalas that bounced between our apartments for decades.   Later in life, he spoke often of this time, about the mornings with ashes in a chipped saucer, the taste of lukewarm coffee and ink on his fingers from the real estate listings.  It was an era of great possibility.

By 1994 or so, I was living in Chicago and newly married.  Based on some success licensing dancehall compilations (via Jamie Stewart) and a partnership with James Iha and D’arcy Wretzky (of the Smashing Pumpkins) I started Scratchie Records with a $50,000 bank loan.  I asked Adam to be a partner in the label.  My plot was to release some singles, some eps, get a shitload of publicity (based on the Pumpkins fame) and land some sort of distribution deal with a major label.  To that end, I had purloined (from a rifled Rolodex in a powerful lawyer’s office) David Geffen’s “special” number.   Somehow, in the infinite ballsiness that I used to possess, I managed to bullshit my way onto the phone with Geffen, pitch Scratchie and eventually get a meeting with the label’s A&R guy named Luke Wood.   A few days later,  Adam and I headed to LA to meet with Wood and a bunch of other labels.  On the plane, Adam played me a demo of songs he had been working on with Chris Collingswood under the tentative name, Fountains of Wayne.  Adam had produced the tunes, mixed them and I believe, played most of the instruments. (Little known fact: Adam was a KILLER rock and roll drummer. He was very proud of this.) I loved the demo said that it should be titled “Big Bag Of Rock Tricks” as it borrowed so many tropes from the big hits of the era. Adam joked that it was his “grunge” record.  We both knew it was “can’t miss” demo.

In LA, we drove around in our rented car taking in meeting after meeting.  We were called Mr. Freeman and Mr. Schlesinger and serious people were talking seriously with us about serious things.  Priority Records showed us their NWA gold records and said they could see ours hanging on the wall next; Luke Wood freaked out over the FOW demos; and two mysterious brothers, each dressed like Jean Luc Picard on vacation, plied us with fresh-squeezed juices,  asked us to visualize where we would be in ten years and asked, with a degree of threat, if we would sign with them (no matter that we had no idea what it was that they did or who they represented). Adam and I would leave each meeting, get in our car and just fall apart with laughter.  We were still those little boys sketching out the  FORGOTTEN BROCCOLI legend, and it all seemed so absurd and funny and great to be taken seriously and to be together.  Scratchie ended up doing a deal with Mercury Records and FOW signed with Atlantic.  It was the last glory days of the record industry and it all soon fell apart.

In the midst of a very rough patch in my life, I called Adam and said that I was having trouble watching movies or reading because my ability to suspend disbelief was gone in the face of a troubled real life.  He agreed. He didn’t care about movies or fiction because they were made up.  In fact, the only entertainment that Adam really liked was other people. Dumb, smart, rich, poor. Did not matter. His friendships ranged from other musicians to bankers to semi-hookers to everything in between. Adam liked playing the role of ringmaster, weaving people into his world, his inside jokes, his gentle teases.  He was generous with money, encouragement, advice and compliments. He was witty in an almost classic, Noel Coward sort of way — tossing one-liners and bon mots around like juggled ping pong balls.  He respected people who were good at banter and maintained a general level of positivity; he had no patience for depression and despised mopiness of all sorts. People loved him in return and he really liked being loved and admired (who doesn’t?).  He loved having his friends around; he liked dinners; he liked dinner parties; he wanted to go on vacations with his friends and on vacations, he wanted to explore and meet still more people.  In his youth, he couldn’t stay up to 11:30 to watch Saturday Night Live and would wake up startled and disappointed to Don Kirchner’s Rock Concert. This was not an issue in his adulthood.  He wanted to be up late, drinking whiskey and would badger, cajole and send out increasingly pushy texts if you did not join him — his texted “C’mon!” indicated that you were doing a disservice to yourself by not joining him, and if you would only wise up and do want he wanted, you would be much happier.  He was thrilled to mix up different groups of friends and never felt awkward if they did not get along.  Adam was perhaps the most realistic person I have met in terms of human weakness.  Nothing phased him: drug use, sexual foibles, criminality.   Even in business, he understood (and even expected) that people would rip him off and swindle him.  He would call people out for their bad behavior, whether it was stealing from the till or “forgetting” their wallet when a check came, but he would never cut them off or sic the law on them. He acted as if sneakiness and lying were part of life but also kind of a waste of his time and an insult to his intelligence.

So where was I in this mix of friends?  I acted as a grounding mechanism for Adam, a fixed-wing, a handhold carved into a mountainside.  I was the comma, the period, the semicolon that kept his sentences intact. I was the person he could call to complain about some work thing, some relationship thing because I was always on his side.  This was not blind loyalty. Adam was blisteringly intelligent, made a study of the science of Logic and could be a bully and powerfully manipulative.  This made some people get pretty angry with him.  But what I understood was that his manipulations were guided by basically wanting the best for everyone. He was not out to rip people off, to take credit where it was not due; he just had faith that he knew best in all things and the thing was, he was most often right. My favorite illustration of this point was that Adam once went over to our friend’s new apartment, got him drunk and basically ordered a house full of furniture for him because it made Adam crazy that the guy had his children sleeping on air mattresses.

He could get exasperating.  This is true.   When I was maybe two years old and not yet talking,  Adam and I were on Fire Island where my parents had a house in the dunes and beautiful hippy girls played topless volleyball. I sat in a red wagon on the boardwalk and Adam, a year older than me, wanted to pull me and I DID NOT WANT THIS.  Without the ability to use words to defend myself, I bit him.  Shocked, he looked at his mother and said…”But, I am not something to eat.”  He did, however, get the point and for the rest of his life, he knew when to back off.

I am a person that, fortunately, has been loved.  My wife loves me.  My kids love me (sometimes). My sisters and my parents love me. And Adam unabashedly loved me.  Even as my career got impossibly hyphenated into smaller and more obscure genres “Jewish-Jamaican-Record-Store-Owner/ DJ,” he was always proud of me and talked up what I was doing. He always brought people to wherever I was playing records (although he would drive me crazy by always telling me that it was too loud or the treble was a bit much). He was, simply, my greatest fan.  He was never bothered that I, unlike him, was not such a big fan of certain people. In fact, he sort of found my orneriness funny. He loved that I could flummox his banker friends with my obscure knowledge about 1970s New York real estate and tax laws. He was my favorite person to cook for because he just acted so stunned that I could have made something so fucking delicious.  And I cooked for him a lot — at his house, my house, his parent’s house; he knew I liked to be kept busy.  He loved my wife, my kids; he always thought I was a better father, a better husband than I believed myself to be. He trusted my opinion, whether it was about music, business projects or relationship, and family issues. He always admired how much I read and how well-read I was.  (Adam was one of the most intelligent people I have ever met, yet he carried a pretty strong anti-intellectual streak: he hated books; he loved newspapers, magazines and may possibly have been that last person on earth with a Rolling Stone subscription.) He loved my friends and, in the most lovely way, so many of my people become his people.  But, most of all, Adam felt protective of me, he wanted to make sure I was always around, that my tether never strayed too far from him.  When I was getting ready to move to Japan, he did everything possible to get me to stay.  And when I left, he managed to never let too much time go without seeing me.  And, almost every night, no matter the time difference I would get a text: “How do you clean mushrooms?” or  “Alexis says that sun-dried tomatoes are the beef jerky of tomatoes.”

And for me? I loved him so. From 1998 to 2018, I saw him pretty much every week if he was in New York.  We ate in every borough from pizza in Staten island to Jewish deli in the Bronx; if traffic was bad, we sometimes met up for quick after-work drinks; we watched basketball at Toad Hall and the Super Bowl in a variety of apartments ( always with my chili). We celebrated every birthday together (and his gifts were always perfect and well thought out), vacationed together, BBQed together.  Beyond his humour, loyalty, intelligence and his incredible talents, he also had the ability to surprise me. I once called him to find an emergency mover as I had a Uhaul truck full of boxes and furniture parked in front of my new apartment on 47th street.  To my absolute and total surprise, he came over immediately and spent the afternoon schlepping boxes up the stairs.  He was actually happy about the whole thing and said he needed the exercise. Blew my mind.  I loved that he was always vulnerable, that no matter how many Grammys or Emmys he won, it bothered him when people he knew and cared for didn’t take the time to watch or listen to his music.  He knew his own faults — his selfishness, his tunnel vision — and he actively sought to be a better father, a better son, a better friend, a better brother, a better boyfriend.  It affected him deeply when friends or family died or people moved away — he felt the clock was ticking and wanted to repair damages and slights   It sounds silly and petty, but I felt both pride and admiration as Adam expanded his palette, moving from a kid who was frightened of my mother’s pesto to an absolute maven for the hottest, craziest Ma-La Sichuan feast. When it came to cooking, he was the mirror of me trying to play the piano as an 8-year-old:  He had no grace, no natural skill in the kitchen — he was a blur of arms and knives and off-beat chops — but he listened to everything I ever told him about cooking and especially everything my wife taught him.  In the end, he made a stellar Japanese Karage and fed his daughters and his accomplice Alexis with aplomb.

So what am I doing here?  Why am I telling this story?  What exactly is the point in stacking, piece-by-piece, the history of my friendship with Adam?  If I fit together the blocks of memory — if I remember that the cot at Adam’s house smelled of Downy, that his cat Yankee was a Nazi, that there was a weird small door on his staircase, that his mom gave me St. John’s Chewable Asprin, that behind his garage there was mica that would flake away into thin shards that seemed like glass, that he sang Mandy to a girl named Jennifer Hatrack, that he hated washing the rice pot, that his sunporch held a copy of Michener’s Hawaii with the title spelled out in rainbow letters — if I do all these things can I stick them under his tongue and like a golem,  bring him back to life?  Because honestly, I am feeling a bit lost here without him; as much as I grounded him, he grounded me and I feel like a typesetter’s tray that has been spilled across the floor. And I don’t understand any of this.  It all seems cheap and perverse and meaningless that one cough, one rubbed nose and I have lost my best friend; and I can’t help but see the universe as wrong, skewed and slapped out of orbit that I will have to be 52 and 53 and so on and so on and Adam will always be 52.  And I am selfish and horrible because I am loved, and his children and Alexis and his parents must hurt so much more than me, but really I am mired here with sick thoughts imagining who I would have traded to the dark Gods to keep Adam alive, because if there was one thing Adam really hated it was death, and he never ever would have been peaceful in its grip.  And no, I take no solace that his spirit is still with me because his spirit can’t call me and say “Hey Jerems…”

Fuck.

Last August, Adam flew to Prince Edward Island on a whim.  My wife was in Japan.  Alexis had work.  My kids, my parents were there, but basically it was Adam and I alone.  It was a great couple of days.  We did nothing.  I cooked, Adam napped. We took walks and drove across the island.  He gave my son tips on playing the bass.  He sat my daughter on his lap and treated her, howling with laughter, like a puppet playing drums.  We sat outside one night, the lights from the house turned off, and the night sky shimmering like one of those illuminated jellyfish.  We drank, perhaps, too much bourbon and I smoked cheap roll-up tobacco because I was trying to quit by smoking something gross. We laughed and talked shit, and alternately teased Jonny Small and said how much we loved him. In the deep black of space, the satellites revolved through the heavens and shooting stars tore across the skies and everything, for a moment, was in a perfect cosmic balance.

Goodbye, my friend.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

33 Replies to “The Unfathomable Reality of Loss: Adam Schlesinger 1967-2020”

  1. That was beautiful. I did not know Adam except as a fan of his music. But reading this I feel as if I did, if only in a very small way. My brother, one year younger than me, is a musician, and composer in NYC, and we came of age in the suburbs and both moved to NYC to start lives after school in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Many of your references and even your descriptions of Adam’s musicality feel familiar to me in very personal ways and touched me deeply. Thank you for sharing this.

  2. Thank you for sharing this incredibly heart felt piece of yourself with us. He knows you love him. And he will always be with you.

  3. Good Lord! This has got to be the most eloquent and stirring collection of words I’ve ever seen put together as a tribute to a friend. Beautiful! I think everyone who reads this will probably be jealous of the fact that they don’t have a relationship like this or a friend who will write a tribute like this when they pass. So sorry for your loss brother. ❤️💚💛🙏🏼

  4. Wow, Jeremy. Thank you for the heartfelt remembrance. Like you and many, I cannot believe that this has occurred. Adam (and you!) did so much for us during the Scratchie era, in and out of the studio. As you’ve already beautifully elaborated upon, he was funny, smart, and simply an overall good guy, someone whose suggestions and directions you could trust in life and work. As does anyone ever acquainted with him, I feel so fortunate to have crossed paths with him, and with the most awesome team of dudes there ever was in the world regarding anything – Jeremy & Adam! I am truly sorry for the loss of your closest friend…

  5. Beautiful Jeremy. Fans, critics and journalists did a great job capturing Adam’s remarkable skills. But only you could capture Adam, the person, this well. This eloquently. And the poignant end with you sharing the beauty of life in the PEI sky followed by a sudden Goodbye My Friend. You and Adam; you, Adam and Jonathan, shared something so special. So rare. May those memories carry you through this “obscene and unnatural” period.

  6. Just a fan but this is stunning writing and just so, so fucking sad and beautiful. You were extraordinarily lucky to have each other. I hope all the memories stacked in your brain bring you comfort. I am so sorry for your loss.

  7. I met Adam when my boyfriend at the time was the drum tech for Fountains of Wayne. Adam was a truly good person and that was evident from just meeting him. Thank you for writing these words.

  8. That was absolutely brilliant! I first met Adam in 5th grade, at Hillside Elementary School. He was way ahead of the curve, In middle school (Glenfield) we were in the same group called Concept 2A. All of us knew then, that Adam would eventually be famous. Adam would frequently entertain us on the piano. At Montclair High we played on the tennis team together. I vividly remember Adam’s wit and sense of humor. One day he showed me his MHS ID card. He had replaced his picture with one of John McEnroe. My last vivid memory of Adam, was in the Summer of 1986. After his freshman year at Williams, he had a kick ass party at his parent’s house on Prospect St. Honestly it felt like most of Montclair was in his house that night. That was Adam. Just catching up with us, drinking shots and beers. Like most people I was proud of what he accomplished. I was both shocked and saddened last week to hear he was sick. A bunch of us from Montclair were on a Facebook Live group prayer for him. Paul Narvaez let us know that Adam seemed to be a bit better, so we all felt good. The next day I just felt a deep sense of loss. Thought about how many more of his songs we should have heard. Thanks again for this unique insight into his life. It made me smile.

  9. This was gorgeous, an exhalation of love of one friend to another. My deepest condolences. I knew Adam only through his music. You gave me a mosaic of so much more. I thank you for giving us this in the middle of your grief.

  10. Jeremy I’ve been thinking about you, worried about your silence, but knowing that when you were ready you would do this, using your amazing talent with words to share your grief, the shock of this loss and the memories of your friendship. It was truly beautifully written. I laughed cried and learned a few things…… I wish I could hug you in person, but hugging is a big no no these days, so please know that we are here for you. When we are allowed to be together we will do our best to honor Adam with an amazing “dinner party” and together we will remember him and try to process this horrible and unfair loss.
    Until then please know we love you.

  11. wow. life is of course punctuated by and funneled towards the pain of loss, and the irony is that this pain is the punishment for having built a meaningful life through meaningful bonds. i’m envious of what you both built together. we should all be so lucky to meet the right people. hope to see you next time you’re around.

  12. Jeremy- Thank you. It is good to know that Adam was blessed with such a friend. I really appreciate your attention to detail. Obviously, he would have as well. I wish you strength in going through your grief.

  13. I just broke out in tears once again. I knew Adam since the mid 90s and our paths often crossed for music projects. He was a partner in my piano bar. Thank you for sharing.

  14. Jeremy, thank you so much for this heartfelt tribute to your dear friend. Having lost my Mom, my long-term relationship and my two kitties in a span of 6 months last year (all quite unexpectedly), my heart goes out to you for the grief and loss I imagine you must be feeling. I wish you the peace and healing that I’ve found come only with time and self-care and more tears than I knew were possible. Nothing fills the void that remains when those we love move on, but our fractured hearts can heal and gain the strength to carry on.

  15. Dear Jeremy – Reading your beautiful words was truly a cathartic experience for me it so touched
    my heart for it is palpably a love letter to Adam. It made me cry and that felt good, What an extraordinary
    friendship, How lucky we were who knew him and how lucky for you to have had in your lifetime such a friendship! So sad that we are not all together to hug and share our stories.
    Thank you for this .

  16. Hey Jeremy…I had been wondering how you were processing this. I am so unbelievably sad for you and sorry for the loss of your best friend.

  17. What a moving and beautifully detailed tribute. Thank you. My husband and I are long-time Fountains of Wayne fans who raised our two daughters listening to all those brilliant, super-fun albums. Our girls are teens now (and quarantined with us at home) and just last week we were all singing loudly and off-key to “Mexican Wine” on the bluetooth, dancing around the kitchen in our socks, boiling pasta and playing air guitar together. It was a moment I cherished during this weird time. Two days later I read about Adam’s passing. It was a gut punch. I am still dazed by it. My family lost a musical hero, but you lost your lifelong friend and so our hearts are with you, too. And you better believe we will be dancing to Fountains of Wayne in our socks in the kitchen for many years to come.

  18. I don’t know you, I am a friend of Jessica’s. I don’t know what to say other than your writing is captivating, I hope to love my friends and family the way you loved Adam, I hear your deep pain and incredible loss, and no one should lose a best friend like you have. Sending love from a stranger.

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