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Fountains of Wayne

Although Fountains of Wayne didn't enjoy mainstream attention until the release of "Stacy's Mom" in 2003, the band had already established itself as one of America's strongest power pop acts. Based in New Jersey, the group first appeared in 1996 with a mix of British-influenced pop songs, lo-fi production, and wry lyrics about dead-end jobs and biker boyfriends. Fountains of Wayne expanded their lineup and polished up their sound during the following years, eventually hitting gold with 2003's Welcome Interstate Managers. While that album proved to be something of a fluke success, the band continued releasing well-crafted records throughout the subsequent years. Meanwhile, co-founder Adam Schlesinger enjoyed a separate career as a producer and ghostwriter for other artists. Schlesinger first crossed paths with Chris Collingwood in 1986, while both were studying at Massachusetts' Williams College. Sharing a mutual affection for melodic British pop, the two formed a series of short-lived bands before recording an LP under the name Pinwheel. The duo split up after legal hassles blocked the album's release, with Schlesinger resurfacing as part of the indie pop band Ivy and Collingwood joining a Boston-based country group named the Mercy Buckets. The two musicians eventually reunited in 1996 as Fountains of Wayne, christening their band after a lawn ornament store in Wayne, NJ. Atlantic Records released the duo's self-titled LP that same year, and Schlesinger helped create some more buzz by authoring the title song to the movie That Thing You Do! Schlesinger's contributions to the film's soundtrack garnered a Grammy nomination and an RIAA gold certification in 1997. Fountains of Wayne's own album only enjoyed a sliver of that success, though, selling roughly 125,000 copies in America. Despite a lack of mainstream attention, the band toured the world alongside the Lemonheads and the Smashing Pumpkins. The addition of two touring musicians -- guitarist Jody Porter and former Posies drummer Brian Young -- helped round out the band's sound, and both became official members during the recording of Utopia Parkway. Released in 1999, the album expanded the band's catalog with slicker production, beefier harmonies, and Porter's muscled guitar work. Despite the popularity of "Denise" at college radio, Utopia Parkway sold poorly. Frustrations grew between Fountains of Wayne and Atlantic Records, who neglected to promote the song "Trouble Times" as a single, and the band was dropped from Atlantic's roster in late 1999. A long hiatus followed, during which Schlesinger co-wrote several songs for the Josie and the Pussycats film, released a third album with Ivy, and produced albums for the Verve Pipe, David Mead, and They Might Be Giants. The musicians reconvened four years later, funneling their own money into the creation of Welcome Interstate Managers. Released in 2003 on the newly minted S-Curve label, the album gave Fountains of Wayne its first taste of Billboard-certified success with "Stacy's Mom," a hit across several charts and the band's first Top 40 entry. The accompanying music video featured Rachel Hunter as the song's voluptuous title character; perhaps predictably so, it became a staple at MTV. The subsequent singles "Mexican Wine" and "Hey Julie" fared less well, but Welcome Interstate Managers nevertheless went gold, whetting the public's appetite for future Fountains of Wayne releases. The double-disc compilation album Out-of-State Plates arrived in 2005, sporting two new songs (including the single "Maureen"), several live cuts, and a wealth of rarities. Fountains of Wayne launched a limited tour before returning home, where Schlesinger kept up his songwriting chops by penning four tracks for the soundtrack to the 2007 film Music & Lyrics. That same year also saw the release of another FOW album, Traffic and Weather, which continued the band's tradition of fusing power pop with lyrics about travel, relationships, and workplace boredom. While working on a follow-up album, Schlesinger found time to play alongside Taylor Hanson, James Iha, and Bun E. Carlos in the pop supergroup Tinted Windows, whose debut album appeared in 2009. Later that year, Schlesinger joined Fountains of Wayne on a full-band acoustic tour, using the opportunity to play a handful of new songs in front of a live audience. Most of the new material found its way onto the band's next album, Sky Full of Holes, which doubled as their first release for Yep Roc in 2011. ~ Andrew Leahey
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Stations Featuring
Fountains of Wayne

    '90s Alternative

    '90s Alternative
    1 song

    Adult Alternative

    Adult Alternative
    1 song

    Adult Rock

    Adult Rock
    1 song

    Alt Country

    Alt Country
    1 song

Albums by
Fountains of Wayne

Top Songs by
Fountains of Wayne

  1.   Song
  2.   Radiation Vibe
  3.   Sink To the Bottom
  4.   Stacy's Mom
  5.   The Man in the Santa Suit
  6.   ... Baby One More Time
  7.   I Want an Alien for Christmas
  8.   Someone to Love
  9.   Valley Winter Song
  10.   All Kinds of Time
  11.   Traffic and Weather
  12.   Denise
  13.   Mexican Wine
  14.   Red Dragon Tattoo
  15.   Hung Up on You
  16.   Hackensack
  17.   Leave the Bike
  18.   Fire Island
  19.   Someone's Gonna Break Your Heart
  20.   I Want You Around
  21.   Bought for a Song
  22.   Planet of Weed
  23.   Please Don't Rock Me Tonight
  24.   Firelight Waltz
  25.   Michael and Heather at the Baggage Claim
  26.   New Routine
  27.   Half a Woman
  28.   City Folk Morning
  29.   Hey Julie
  30.   Bright Future in Sales
  31.   Go, Hippie
  32.   Hat and Feet
  33.   Imperia
  34.   She's Got a Problem
  35.   Janice's Party
  36.   Everything's Ruined
  37.   I Know You Well
  38.   Halley's Waitress
  39.   It Must Be Summer
  40.   Prom Theme
  41.   I'll Do the Driving
  42.   California Sex Lawyer
  43.   Can't Get It Out of My Head
  44.   Radio Bar
  45.   Today's Teardrops
  46.   Joe Rey
  47.   The Summer Place
  48.   Cold Comfort Flowers
  49.   Cemetery Guns
  50.   Action Hero
  51.   '92 Subaru
  52.   Yolanda Hayes