NEW YORK (CelebrityAccess) — Ric Ocasek, the Rock & Roll Hall of Famer best known for his stint as frontman for the New Wave group The Cars, has died. He was 75.
According to NBC New York, police said they were summoned to a house on East 19th Street at about 4 p.m. for an unconscious male. Ocasek was pronounced dead at the scene, NBC reported.
According to a statement from Ocasek’s second wife, Paulina Porizkova, the rock legend died in his sleep while recovering from surgery.
Ocasek, along with bassist Benjamin Orr; lead guitarist Elliot Easton; keyboardist Greg Hawkes; and drummer David Robinson, formed The Cars in 1976, fusing guitar-oriented rock with synthesizers, helping to define the sound of New Wave.
The group scored numerous hits, including “My Best Friend’s Girl,” “Good Times Roll,” “You’re All I’ve Got Tonight,” “Bye Bye Love,” and “Moving in Stereo” from their self-titled 1978 debut.
In 1984, The Cars released Heartbeat City, which was their most successful studio album, bolstered by the use of the track “Drive” as part of a public service announcement tied to 1985 Live Aid concerts.
However, despite the success of the album, the band parted ways while members of the group pursued solo projects, with Ocasek having released more than seven solo studio albums over the course of his career.
In 2011, the surviving members of The Cars reunited for a new album Move Like This, and a short North American tour that included a performance at Lollapalooza. The reunion was short-lived though and following the tour, the band once again went on a hiatus.
In 2018, Ocasek and The Cars were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
In addition to his work with The Cars, Ocasek was known for his work as a record producer, working with artists such as Weezer, Romeo Void, Nada Surf, No Doubt, Black 47, Bad Religion, and The Cribs.