Heaven’s Guest Book: Ric Ocasek, leader of the Boston-based rock band The Cars and an influential music producer, has died, a New York Police Department spokesman confirmed to NPR. He was found unconscious Sunday afternoon at his townhouse in Manhattan.
Ocasek co-founded The Cars in Boston in 1976 with bassist and singer Benjamin Orr. The band’s sound merged classic guitar-oriented rock with synthesizer-driven pop sounds of the late 1970s and early 80s.
The band recorded more than a dozen Top 40 anthems, including “My Best Friend’s Girl,” “Good Times Roll,” and “Just What I Needed
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Ric Ocasek, Lead Singer of The Cars, Dead in New York at 75
Ocasek and The Cars were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2018
Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Ric Ocasek, lead singer of the rock band The Cars, died Sunday in New York at age 75.
Police said they received a call around 4 p.m. for an unconscious male at a townhouse on East 19th Street. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Law enforcement sources confirmed the deceased was Ocasek.
Ocasek and his band were inducted into the Rock Hall in 2018. The institution described the band as “hook-savvy with the perfect combo of new wave and classic rock.”
The band had 13 top-40 singles, and Ocasek went on to a successful producing career after The Cars broke up in the late 1980s.
He was also known for his long-running marriage to the Czech supermodel Paulina Porizkova. She announced their separation in 2018 after 28 years of marriage.
They listed the 19th Street residence for sale earlier this year for more than $15 million.
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The Cars frontman Ric Ocasek found dead in Manhattan townhouse
By Larry Celona and Jackie Salo | Ric Ocasek, the lead singer of iconic new wave rock band The Cars, was found dead in his Manhattan apartment on Sunday, law enforcement sources told The Post. He was 70 years old.
Ocasek was discovered unconscious and unresponsive at around 4:14 p.m. inside his Gramercy Park pad by his estranged wife, Paulina Porizkova, sources said.
He appeared to have died from natural causes, sources added.
Ocasek and his seminal new wave band The Cars shot to fame with their self-titled hit album in the 1978, which included hits such as “My Best Friend’s Girl” and “Just What I Needed.”
The singer reflected on his years in the band when he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last year.
“It’s certainly a wonderful feeling to be accepted by peers and you see the people that are in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, who gets inducted, it’s a positive feeling that you get,” Ocasek said in an interview with Rolling Stone.
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