Ric Ocasek, the lead singer of iconic new wave rock band The Cars, was found dead in his Manhattan apartment today. He was 70 years old.
Ocasek was discovered unconscious and unresponsive by his estranged wife, Paulina Porizkova, sources said. He appeared to have died from natural causes.
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.
From 1978 to 1987, the band churned out six records — “five of which are good-to-great,” said Erik Adams, an AV Club music critic, in a 2018 article.
“And then there are The Cars, the type of band that put out a perfect debut record, and then had the audacity to not pack it in after that,” the critic wrote.
In 1984, the band received another notable accolade, winning MTV’s “Video of the Year” award for its hit song off its 5th album, “You Might Think.”
After a long hiatus, the band reunited in 2011 and released an album called “Move Like This.” It was the band’s first, and only, album without late- bassist Benjamin Orr, who died in 2000.
Ocasek had recently placed the home where he was found on the market after he and Paulina announced their split in May 2018.
The pair — who shared two children together — had been together for 28 years when they separated.