80’s Comeback Surprise: Eric Carmen

eric carmen raspberriesWhen a reality show contestant wants to impress the audience, they go for the ultimate power ballad, “All By Myself”. Eric Carmen’s huge hit in 1976 was actually based on Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto #2. When you reach the song’s  chorus, it’s like a final exam of your voice’s ability. Similarly “Never Gonna Fall In Love Again” continued the same chart-topping formula.  Not sure who was a bigger star in the 70’s, Eric Carmen or his glorious blown-out hairstyle.  His band, The Raspberries scored multiple Top 40 hits including the upbeat and frisky “Go All The Way” . But by the end of the 70’s, Eric Carmen’s career hit a wall and his label lost faith in their hitmaker.


“GO ALL THE WAY” The Raspberries


eric carmen hungry eyes dirty dancingHollywood to the rescue! The writers for a new 80’s film about a town that outlawed dancing needed the film’s love theme.  Eric Carmen hadn’t written a big hit in years, but the label gave him a shot.  Eric wrote the soaring ballad, “Almost Paradise”, for Footloose. The song’s chorus required two powerful voices.  Mike Reno of Loverboy and Ann Wilson of Heart were the perfect duo to handle the song.  “Almost Paradise” became one of the biggest hits of the 80’s and put Eric Carmen’s name back in the charts.  Following on the success of the Footloose Soundtrack, another major 80’s dance film knew exactly where to find the hottest songwriter of the moment.  This time around, Eric didn’t just write the song, he recorded the record. “Hungry Eyes” for the Dirty Dancing soundtrack perfectly captured the sexual chemistry of Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey on the silver screen. Almost 30 million records sold just between these two monumental 80’s soundtracks.





Eric Carmen Make Me Lose ControlFollowing up on Eric’s surprising comeback, his label released a new greatest hits album to keep the momentum rolling. “Make Me Lose Control”, the first single, turned out to be the perfect summer anthem of 1988. The sexy, nostalgic, pop song hit #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart and become the second biggest hit of his career. Add in Celine Dion’s cover of “All By Myself” and Eric Carmen was raking in the royalty checks by the end of the 80’s.   What happened since then?  Eric has kept a low profile. He did join Ringo Starr’s All-Star Band for a couple tours.  Unfortunately, lately he’s best known for an infamous drunk driving arrest in 2008 that was vividly captured on TruTV’s World’s Dumbest…