Ocasek Driving Cars Documentary

New solo album also in the works

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Ric Ocasek plans to take a couple months off from producing to begin work on a Cars documentary. He will edit the documentary himself and then shop it around, with hopes of getting it released as soon as the end of this year.

"There's a lot of videos that sometimes we did on our own, that we didn't release as videos," says Ocasek, the Cars' former frontman. "I have a ton of backstage footage and a ton of stuff from all the years we were a band. There's a lot of live stuff and a ton of general fooling around, which I think might be pretty interesting. There's quite a lot of stuff that would be pretty fun for people to see what the band was really like."

Formed in 1976 in Boston, the Cars helped to define the New Wave sound through their keyboard-driven hits like "Just What I Needed," "Let's Go" and "You Might Think," before they split in 1988. The members have remained in touch, but any possibility of a true reunion ended in 2000 with the death of bassist/co-lead vocalist Ben Orr.

Ocasek is also ready to begin work on his fifth solo album and first since 1997's Troublizing, which was produced by Billy Corgan and featured former Smashing Pumpkins/Hole bassist Melissa Auf Der Maur and former Cars keyboardist Greg Hawkes. However, on the new album, Ocasek plans to go it alone. "I just want this particular record to be different than any of the others I've done," he says. "I intend to do it all in my own studio, in a much more homey way."

But, not surprising for a man whose recent production credits include Weezer and No Doubt, Ocasek is also shooting for a pop-friendly album. "I've just generally been thinking about having songs that people can really attach themselves to really quickly," he says. "I don't know if I would do any poetry on music. I think it would be something you can sing, hum along to, every song. Maybe a different approach in the arrangements, nothing too traditional."

In other Cars news, the twenty-track Complete Greatest Hits will be released February 19th on Rhino Records.