Raspberries Frontman, 'All By Myself' Singer, Eric Carmen Dead at 74

Singer Eric Carmen, who was first known in the early 1970s as the frontman of the Raspberries, and later achieved solo success with hits like “All By Myself” and “Hungry Eyes,” has died at the age of 74.

“It is with tremendous sadness that we share the heartbreaking news of the passing of Eric Carmen,” the singer’s wife, Amy Carmen, wrote on his website. “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,” she added. “Please respect the family’s privacy as we mourn our enormous loss.”

Carmen’s wife concluded with “Love Is All That Matters…Faithful and Forever,” a callback to her husband’s song, “Love Is All That Matters,” from his 1977 solo album “Boats Against the Current.”

The singer’s cause of death and exact date of death has not yet been revealed.

In his early years, Carmen — who was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio — had his first big hit, “Go All the Way,” with the Raspberries after the band signed its first recording contract in 1971 with Capitol Records.

The song reached No. 5 on the Billboard singles charts.

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“Critics hailed the band’s unique twist on Beatlesque power-pop, citing Carmen as a pop visionary,” Cleveland.com reported.

“Bruce Springsteen and Courtney Love both are fans of the band’s music. Kiss, Cheap Trick, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, and Guns N’ Roses cite them as an influence,” the outlet added.

The Raspberries had a few more hits after that, such as “I Wanna Be With You” and “Let’s Pretend,” before eventually breaking up in 1975.

But others may say that Carmen achieved greater success as a solo artist, with hits like, “All by Myself,” “Almost Paradise (Love Theme From Footloose),” and “Hungry Eyes,” among others.

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Notably, singer Celine Dion covered “All by Myself” on her 1996 album, “Falling Into You.”

While attending college at John Carroll University in the late 1960s, Carmen joined a band called Cyrus Erie, whose guitarist, Wally Bryson, had been playing with Jim Bonfanti and Dave Smalley in one of Cleveland’s most popular bands, the Choir, which scored a national hit in 1967 with the song, “It’s Cold Outside.”

After Cyrus Erie and the Choir ended, Carmen, Bryson, Bonfanti, and Smalley got together and created the Raspberries.

Carmen’s first solo album in 1975 had three Top 40 singles. The singer went on to release another three solo albums, achieving one more hit in 1978, “Change of Heart.” In 1984, his song, “Almost Paradise,” reached No. 7 on the Billboard charts after it was covered by Mike Reno and Ann Wilson for the film, Footloose.

In 1987, Carmen reached No. 4 with his song, “Hungry Eyes,” which he had written for the film, Dirty Dancing. The singer made it to the Top 40 carts again a year later, with his song, “Make Me Lose Control,” which peaked at No. 3.

Carmen lived in Los Angeles for a time, but eventually moved back to Cleveland in the mid-1990s, “and basically went quiet for several years,” Cleveland.com reported.

At the end of 2004, the Raspberries got back together, and the band played a few shows in Cleveland, before performing eight concerts around the United States in 2005.

In 2014, the movie Guardians of the Galaxy gave the Raspberries another moment in the spotlight when it included “Go All The Way” in the film’s soundtrack.

You can follow Alana Mastrangelo on Facebook and X/Twitter at @ARmastrangelo, and on Instagram.


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