Eric Carmen, ‘All by Myself’ and ‘Hungry Eyes,’ dies at 74

March 13, 2024 1:09 pm

[Source: CNN Entertainment]

Eric Carmen, the former lead vocalist of The Raspberries and singer of “All by Myself,” is dead, according to his website. He was 74, according to IMDb.

“It is with tremendous sadness that we share the heartbreaking news of the passing of Eric Carmen,” a post on his website says. “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,” the post said.

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No cause of death was given.

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, Carmen rose to fame as the frontman of the 1970s pop-rock group The Raspberries, whose tidy haircuts and matching suits appeared to reference the uniform looks of The Beatles and other defining groups of the British Invasion.

“We became immensely popular by going completely against the grain in 1970,” Carmen wrote in his website bio. “Prog-rock was ‘in,’ and FM radio clutched it to its bosom. I hated it. I loved the Beatles, The Who, the Byrds, the Stones, the Beach Boys and the Small Faces. I loved bands that could WRITE!”

Together, the band churned out hits including “I Wanna Be with You” and the provocative “Go All the Way” – sung from the perspective of a woman. But it wouldn’t take long before cracks began to form in the group.

“Critics liked us, girls liked us, but their 18-year-old, album-buying brothers said ‘no,’” Carmen wrote. “We got frustrated and imploded.”

After the band broke up in 1975, Carmen built his solo career on knockout ballads such as “All by Myself” – later belted to legendary heights by Celine Dion – and “Hungry Eyes,” which provided the steamy soundtrack backdrop for an intensifying love between Johnny and Baby in “Dirty Dancing.”

Another of Carmen’s most memorable hits was written for a movie soundtrack. He co-wrote “Almost Paradise,” the love theme of the movie “Footloose,” which was performed by Mike Reno and Ann Wilson.

The song earned him his sole Grammy nomination when the soundtrack competed for Best Album of Original Score Written for a Motion Picture.

“All by Myself,” “Make Me Lose Control and “Hungry Eyes” peaked in top 10 of Billboard’s Hot 100 and each spent more than four months on the chart. In all, 13 of Carmen’s songs had a place on the chart.

Carmen declined to join The Raspberries when they reunited in 1999 to release the “Raspberries Refreshed” EP.

But he did join them onstage in 2004 for a performance at Cleveland’s House of Blues and the crew briefly embarked on a mini-tour in 2005, according to Case Western Reserve’s Encyclopedia of Cleveland History.

The group’s final performance together was at Cleveland’s KeyBank State Theatre in December 2007.