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The Cars singer Ric Ocasek, voice of ’80s hits ‘You Might Think’ and ‘Shake It Up,’ dies at 75

Police say the musician was found dead by a family member.

Ric Ocasek in 2005
Provided photo

Ric Ocasek, frontman and lead singer for new-wave icons The Cars, has been found dead in New York.

New York Police Detective Martin Brown said police were called to Ocasek’s residence around 4 p.m. EDT Sunday. “Upon arrival, police found a 75-year-old male unresponsive in bed,” Brown said. “He was pronounced dead at the scene.”

Brown said a family member found Ocasek’s body. ”It doesn’t appear criminal at this time.”

The band, famed for hits like “My Best Friend’s Girl” and “Just What I Needed,” broke through in 1978, and Ocasek, Elliot Easton, Greg Hawkes, David Robinson and Benjamin Orr were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2018.

The Cars split up in the late ’80s, then reunited in 2011 with much fanfare and a new album, “Move Like This,” after Ocasek found himself with a new batch of songs and a sense that they required company.

“Life is short,” he told USA Today at the time. “I knew it would be more interesting than if I got anybody else.”

Ocasek understood that fans embraced them for the band’s signature sound, conceding that The Cars’ tunes “all have a similar quality. I broke it down once to be about six different songs that we do, and they’re all variations on a theme,” he said

For 28 years he was married to Paulina Porizkova, a supermodel he met when she starred in the video for The Cars’ 1984 hit “Drive.” Porizkova revealed in 2018 that the couple, parents of two children, had been been “peacefully separated” for a year.

Ric Ocasek (second from left) with The Cars in 1982.
Provided photo