Composer Adam Schlesinger’s influence on pop culture was so widespread that his death from COVID-19 in April affected an equally wide array of people: from musicians to comedians to TV creators. Today, June 16, a 31-track Schlesinger tribute album titled Saving for a Custom Van is out, featuring covers of Schlesinger-penned songs by all those sorts of people. One highlight: His Crazy Ex-Girlfriend collaborator Rachel Bloom gives a muted, loungy take on Fountains of Wayne’s breakout hit “Stacy’s Mom” that might just be the first performance of the song to make you tear up (that is, until she ad-libs “I’m in love with Stacy’s hot-ass motherfuckin’ mom” at the end).
Elsewhere on the album, Sarah Silverman, who was working on the musical The Bedwetter with Schlesinger before his death, takes on his Music and Lyrics song “Way Back Into Love,” while Fountains of Wayne bandmate Jody Porter turns to a song by Schlesinger’s other band Ivy, “Four in the Morning.” Many of Schlesinger’s power-pop protégés also contributed, including Motion City Soundtrack (Fountains of Wayne’s “A Dip in the Ocean”), Charly Bliss (“Pretend to Be Nice” from Josie and the Pussycats), Jeff Rosenstock (Fountains of Wayne’s “Please Don’t Rock Me Tonight”), Remember Sports (the Click Five’s “Just the Girl”), and Lisa Prank (Fountains of Wayne’s “Little Red Light”). There’s a good showing of ’90s and aughts peers, too, from Ted Leo’s take on the Ivy song “Everyday” to Nada Surf’s performance of Fountains of Wayne’s “Sick Day.” The album was curated and released by Father/Daughter Records and Sadie Dupuis’s label Wax Nine (find Dupuis covering Fountains of Wayne’s “A Fine Day for a Parade” as Sad13). It’s out on Bandcamp, with all proceeds going toward the MusiCares COVID-19 Relief Fund.