Friends, Family and Longtime Colleagues Mourn the Passing of Ric Ocasek on Social Media

Alice Cooper, Courtney Love, Weezer, Billy Corgan and Martha Quinn are just a selection of names paying homage to the New Wave icon

Ric Ocasek / Photo remix by Ron Hart

All throughout the work day, social media was bursting with condolences, remembrances and farewells to Ric Ocasek, who died unexpectedly on Sunday in his Manhattan home at 75.


Here are a few of the public eulogies that particularly stopped us in our online tracks, coming from the vast spectrum of musicians, celebrities, industry folks and everyday people whose lives were impacted by his talent, generosity and sonic prowess.


We will miss you, Ric.


Thank you friends, for the overwhelming outpouring of emails, texts and posts of condolence and sympathy. I have read them all, and there are so many that I may not be able to respond to all of them, but please know that your reaching out at this incredibly difficult time has meant so much to me, and has been a comfort in our profoundly sad time of grief. The Cars are a family, for better or worse, and I lost my big brother yesterday.

With Much Love and Gratitude,


– Elliot Easton, The Cars, via Facebook


“R.I.P. Ric Ocasek. I was a big fan of The Cars. We worked together on the Halloween episode of Saturday Night Live in 1987. When I admired the awesome marcasite ’Serpent’ pin on his lapel, he gave it to me!  Such a sweet man” — Elvira, Mistress of the Dark (official) on Twitter.


Rest In Peace #ricocasek I know all of the band hole loved working with you, much love to your family .. #paulina ❤️❤️❤️❤️#cars were one of the great bands. 🦅🙏 – Courtney Love via Instagram


The whole Weezer family is devastated by the loss of our friend and mentor Ric Ocasek, who passed away Sunday. Ric meant so much to us. He produced 3 key Weezer albums, Blue, Green and 2014’s “Everything…”, and taught all of us so much about music, recording and songcraft. But more importantly he taught us that one can be in a respected position of great power and yet be absolutely humble and have the biggest sweetest heart in the industry.

Ric was so kind to us, and never faltered or changed a thing either professionally or personally in the 3 different decades we worked with him. When you were his friend, it was for life, and he was always as generous as could be with his time and care.

He is the only producer to have worked with all 7 current and past weezer members, and all 7 love and loved working with him and hanging out with him. There is a massive hole in weezer’s heart now. We will miss him forever, and will forever cherish the precious times we got to work and hang out with him. Rest in Peace and rock on Ric, we love you. #RIPRicOcasek #weezerfam #karlscorner – Weezer via Instagram


Devastated to hear of the passing on this man, Ric Ocasek. It has brightened my spirit to see how many have posted about Ric, praising his originality, flair, and brilliance. I was blessed to have known him, through friendship and work (his solo album Troubilizing was one I produced). It’s hard to share the measure of a man in so few words, because, despite his greatness, Ric was open and down to earth in a way that surprised me. And in that allowed our private conversations to flow and float over 100’s of topics (I was mostly interested in what he loved): the Cars, of course, his children and marriage to an eastern siren whom the world (he was aware) didn’t think he deserved (he did, and she him), his guitars, Andy Warhol the person and not the myth, Boston (the city), new wave, deco art, NYC living, producing Weezer, being an A + R man, why he got out of the rat race of making hit records, Mutt Lange, grunge, and on and on and on. He’s opine easy and I’d listen (for a change). Such pleasurable times I didn’t fully appreciate until decades later. Lastly, two things: Ric did me a great honor when he recorded a song I’d written just for him, questioning none of it except it’s quirky title (I’d gone quirky as a wry tribute). And a small memory I’ll share: we were in Ric’s basement, where he had a small, ad hoc studio for writing. And I was asking him a 1000th question on The Cars; in this case, the sound of the keyboard solos. He pointed at a relic. ‘Well, that’s it’ he said. ‘THE keyboard’, said I? It was, and ironically at that moment Greg Hawkes stopped by and he demonstrated all those great sounds! But then I went for broke. I wanted Ric to show me how to play ‘Best Friend’s Girlfriend’. He picked up a guitar, played it perfectly (he was an ace guitarist) and handed it over. The sound, I noted, was exact. It was the pink Fender pictured above, and I dutifully played the opening riff as he’d showed. So what was the guitar, I asked? Ric pointed at the flamingo in my hands. My jaw dropped. It was THE guitar! Love you Ric! Gonna miss you forever.   – Billy Corgan via Instagram


Sail On uncle Ricky ,love you man❤️ – Darryl Jenifer, Bad Brains via Instagram


Rest In Peace #RicOcasek. THANKYOU for all those great Cars jams. First time I heard the Cars was at a Wisconsin rec center on the jukebox. Some older kids were really getting DOWN to the music and I’m just watching and listening, taking it all in thinking, DAMN that band is special. – Tom Morello, via Instagram


Ahh man, say it ain’t so. I loved Ric Ocasek. What an interesting, smart, kind, funny man who made incredible records. I loved those Cars albums when I was a teenager. Perfect pop songs with those wicked elliot easton guitar solos. Absolute candy. Then he went and produced Rock For Light by the Bad Brains. As an adult I met him several times and he was gracious, funny and engaging. Ahh man. Ahh damn. Bless his soul. R.I.P. Transcend to the other side Ric. So much love and appreciation from me. You’re All I Got Tonight. –Flea, via Instagram


Sad to hear of the passing of Rick Ocasek of The Cars. A fine musician who also happened to be one of the major supporters of Suicide back when they didn’t have very many supporter. – Craig Leon via Facebook


Ric Ocasek, The Cars set the tone of #80s before the 80s even started – Just What I Needed, BestFriend’s Girl, Good Times Roll. Then the Shake It Up & Heartbeat City lps brought a convoy of hits to our decade. What are your favorites? I cannot wrap my head around that he’s gone. Dad to 6 sons. Rock Hall of Famer. MTV VMA winner. Thank u for it all Ric. – Martha Quinn, via IHeartRadio


After tracking at Electric Lady, Ric had us finish the record at his Gramercy brownstone to save money. One time during a break he got out his 12-string acoustic, finger-picking & singing “Since You’re Gone” for Bob & I. You’d be surprised at how many of his songs started out quite Dylanesque, like that one and believe it or not, “Just What I Needed.” He made a cassette for us of his early Cars demos, & the influence was apparent. He strove for natural, human sounding takes from us, and when i quickly recorded an example of the solo I wanted to play for “Hold On Hope,” I said okay, its something like that. Now I’ll go out & do it for real. He said “How could it be better than that one? I bet you cant do a better one.” I tried one or two and- he was exactly right. He generously took out his whole guitar collection from S.I.R. for us to use for the sessions, and I made use of almost all of them. – Doug Gillard, Guided By Voices, via Facebook


A shock is the least I can say – my dad, my uncles, my grandmothers, my cousins, the grandchildren (including myself) have lost someone who has left an enormous impact on those surrounding him – the greatest gift he ever gave me was his first child – my dad – the most incredible person known to man – he also blessed me with my incredible uncles who will forever be my male role models. What an influence on the world he had. There would be a whole lot of art, music, inspiration, and family missing with out him. Thank you Ric for the things you produced! Rip my grandfather🖤 #ricocasek #rip #thecars #family #andywarhol @chrisotcasek – Olivia Otcasek, Ric’s granddaughter, via Instagram


We have lost another great in Rock N Roll Hall Of Famer Ric Ocasek of The Cars. Ric and I actually used to be neighbors for a time when we lived in the Hollywood Hills. Ric had a very unique voice for rock n roll, there was just nothing complicated about it and that really gave The Cars an edge on the radio. They spearheaded a simplistic new wave of minimalist rock alongside producer Roy Thomas Baker, much to the delight of car stereos and fans everywhere. Condolences to his family and many fans. We’ll miss ya man.- Alice Cooper, via Instagram


I worked with Ric Ocasek a million years ago, he was such a kind genius with catchy instincts I have always admired and been deeply inspired by.  The art you made changed my life, it made “pop” music cool.  Rest In Peace my friend, another lost hero…. – Kesha via Twitter



VIDEO: The Cars “Since You’re Gone”

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Ron Hart

Ron Hart is the Editor-in-Chief of Rock and Roll Globe. Reach him on Twitter @MisterTribune.

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