Tragic News: Eric Carmen Passes Away at 74: Renowned Singer and Raspberries Frontman

Eric Carmen Passes Away at 74: Renowned Singer and Raspberries Frontman

Eric Carmen Passes Away at 74: Renowned Singer and Raspberries Frontman

Eric Carmen, the celebrated frontman of the powerpop band Raspberries and the soulful voice behind iconic solo hits like “All By Myself,” “Never Gonna Fall in Love Again,” and “Hungry Eyes,” has tragically passed away at the age of 74.

Carmen’s wife, Amy, posted news of the singer’s death on his official website. “It is with tremendous sadness that we share the heartbreaking news of the passing of Eric Carmen,” Amy Carmen wrote. “Our sweet, loving and talented Eric passed away in his sleep, over the weekend. It brought him great joy to know, that for decades, his music touched so many and will be his lasting legacy. Please respect the family’s privacy as we mourn our enormous loss.”

Eric Carmen Passes Away at 74: Renowned Singer and Raspberries Frontman

Eric Carmen first rose to prominence in the early 1970s as the lead singer of Raspberries. Their infectious track “Go All the Way” soared to the fifth spot on the Billboard Hot 100, cementing their place in music history. The song, characterized by guitar riffs reminiscent of The Who and vocals akin to The Beatles, pushed boundaries with its suggestive lyrics, leading to its ban from airplay by both US and UK radio stations. However, its resurgence came in 2014 when it was featured on the inaugural Guardians of the Galaxy soundtrack.

Eric Carmen Passes Away at 74

After the Raspberries disbanded in 1975, Eric Carmen embarked on a successful solo career. His debut singles, “All By Myself” (inspired by Sergei Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 2) and “Never Gonna Fall in Love Again” (based on a segment of Rachmaninov’s Symphony No. 2), became massive hits in 1976. These timeless ballads resonated with audiences worldwide.

Eric Carmen Passes Away at 74: Renowned Singer and Raspberries Frontman

Notably, several of Eric Carmen’s compositions achieved even greater fame when covered by other artists. Celine Dion lent her powerful voice to a rendition of “All By Myself” in 1996, while Olivia Newton-John took on his 1977 track “She Did It.” Additionally, Shaun Cassidy scored a hit with Carmen’s song “That’s Rock and Roll.”

In the late 1980s, Eric Carmen returned to the charts with his contribution to the Dirty Dancing soundtrack: the unforgettable “Hungry Eyes,” which climbed to No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100. His piano-driven pop gem “Make Me Lose Control” followed suit, reaching No. 3.

Eric Carmen Passes Away at 74: Renowned Singer and Raspberries Frontman

Although his singles didn’t dominate the charts beyond the ’80s, Eric Carmen continued to share his musical gifts. He toured alongside Ringo Starr and the All-Starr Band in 2000 and reunited briefly with Raspberries for live performances in 2004. Eric Carmen Passes Away at 74.

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, on Aug. 11, 1949, Carmen was singing and playing instruments from an early age and became a classically trained pianist. The British Invasion bands of the mid-1960s, including The Beatles and Rolling Stones, the Who and the Kinks, were an early and essential influence on Carmen.

Eric Carmen Passes Away at 74: Renowned Singer and Raspberries Frontman

After appearing in several local Cleveland bands, including The Choir, Carmen, Wally Bryson, Jim Bonfanti, and Dave Smalley, they formed the Raspberries. The band was formed as a reaction to prog rock, which was popular then, with Carmen and his bandmates keen to focus on songwriting and harmonies. The Raspberries released their first eponymous studio album in 1972 via Capitol, which featured the power pop they became famed for. Although the album didn’t crack the top 50 Billboard charts, the record featured the singles “Don’t Want to Say Goodbye,” which reached No. 86, and “Go All the Way,” which hit No. 5.

The Raspberries would release three further studio albums – Fresh (1972), Side 3 (1973), and Starting Over (1974) – but the bands had lost commercial momentum and disbanded in 1975. The band’s other notable songs include “I Wanna Be With You,” “Tonight,” and “Overnight Sensation (Hit Record).” Carmen had written or co-written all the Raspberries songs.

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Now a solo act, Carmen found immediate success with his debut album, Eric Carmen, released in November 1975 via Arista Records. Leaning into soft rock and power pop ballads, Arista boss Clive Davis suggested the album’s lead single should be “All By Myself,” which became a monster radio smash that hit No. 2 on the Billboard charts and charted high in the U.K., Canada, Australia and other big markets.

“All By Myself,” built upon Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, was certified Gold in the U.S. and U.K. and would later be covered by Celine Dion.

Firmly established as a popstar, Carmen released his second studio album, Boats Against the Current, to great expectation in 1977, although the album’s recording was fraught with problems and cost overruns. With a lot riding on the album’s success, its commercial performance was disappointing, with Boats Against the Current peaking at No. 45 on the Billboard chart. The record did spawn the singles “She Did It” and “Love Is All That Matters.”

Carmen released two more albums with Arista – Change of Heart (1978), and Tonight You’re Mine (1980) – but neither troubled the top of the charts, and he signed with Geffen Records for his fourth studio album, 1984’s Eric Carmen, his second self-titled album. Eric Carmen also struggled to make an impression despite featuring the top 40 hit “I Wanna Hear It from Your Lips.”

However, as it seemed Carmen’s chart career was winding down, he had a colossal success singing “Hungry Eyes” from the Dirty Dancing soundtrack. Written by Franke Previte and John DeNicola, “Hungry Eyes” became Carmen’s biggest hit, reaching No. 4 on the Billboard chart and charting worldwide.

Carmen was hot again, and capitalizing on the success of “Hungry Eyes,” he released the single “Make Me Lose Control” in May 1988. The song, co-written with Dean Pitchford, was another big hit and hit No. 3 on the Billboard chart. The song, which didn’t appear on any albums and was always considered as something of its own thing by Carmen, proved to be his last hurrah, and he didn’t rerelease any new music till 2000’s I Was Born to Love You, his final studio album.

Eric Carmen leaves a lasting legacy, touching countless hearts with his melodies. He is survived by his wife, Amy, and their two children, Clayton and Kathryn. Eric Carmen Passes Away at 74. As fans mourn this enormous loss, we remember him as a true artist whose music transcended time and touched souls across generations.

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