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Adam Duritz, lead singer and primary composer for Counting Crows, was born in Baltimore on this date in 1964. Duritz (who wears dreadlocks and describes himself in one of the band’s songs as “a Russian Jew American, impersonating African”) assembled the seven-member Counting Crows in 1991, and they have released seven studio albums and sold more than 20 million of them since. Duritz suffers from a dissociative mental disorder and has had to withdraw temporarily from the music scene more than once. He is known for very lively and passionate live performances, and for offering richly innovative covers of songs by George Harrison, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, and other rock and roll greats, in addition to the band’s own compositions. Duritz has also collaborated with Jakob Dylan and other prominent musicians of his generation. To see Counting Crows performing their 1993 hit, “Mr. Jones,” look below.
“My life isn’t necessarily more important than anyone else’s: I’m just better in talking about it.” --Adam Duritz
Lawrence Bush edited Jewish Currents from 2003 until 2018. He is the author of Bessie: A Novel of Love and Revolution and Waiting for God: The Spiritual Explorations of a Reluctant Atheist, among other books. His new volume of illustrated Torah commentaries, American Torah Toons 2, is scheduled for publication this year.