When I met Adam Dishard, I was 19 years old and he looked a lot like Robert Smith. At the time, Adam was playing in Bay Area band, The Catholic Comb, living in Concord, and more specifically, freaking out on the balcony while a handful of young adults danced emphatically to the Cranberries in his apartment. For the next year, that was the extent of my knowing Adam, who would in time come to be one of my closest friends. I caught bits of his story here and there. His band fell apart. His girlfriend left him. He deserved it.
After his life collapsed, Adam moved to a studio in a conspicuously haunted TL apartment complex. It was there that he and I got too drunk one night and stayed up until forever arguing and proselytizing about music, songwriting, love, which of us was going to run down for more whiskey. We played each other our musical works in progress. Tore each other’s stuff apart and helped put it all back together, usually a good bit better than it was before.
Spending nights like this became a regular occurrence. We’d meet reluctantly at Edinburgh Castle, saying that we couldn’t stay out late— we were broke and had to work in the morning—only to find ourselves up all night playing songs, marveling at our dissatisfaction and aloneness together. Eventually, we’d come to refer to these nights as “workshop” and would schedule them on a semi-regular basis, depending on if we’d been doing good writing on our own or the extent to which either of us had been experiencing existential discomfort
Knowing Adam changed my life. Please know that I understand a lot why drunk reveling has a badish reputation, but could be that drunk reveling right can bring you more closely in touch, not just with someone else, but with oneself? Maybe.
During these Workshop nights, Adam challenged me, as a friend and an artist, to be vulnerable and to tell the embarrassing truth (which I have by no means mastered, but it’s an incredibly important goal for me.) More broadly, Adam has set a great example for me. Since we’ve been friends, Adam has parted with his Robert Smith ‘do (no pun intended!) in favor of his, uh normal hair and started recording and performing on his own under the name Books on Fate. Adam built something on his own, based solely on the belief in himself and the need to create. And you know what? His new stuff is awesome.
Go see Books on Fate’s record release show tomorrow night (Sat 10/13) at Bottom of the Hill for sure.
Also, check out his new record Memory because it’s awesome.