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Raspbernie

The End Of An Era

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When I started this website two decades ago, I was just looking to bring other Eric Carmen fans (like myself) together under one roof. Guess what? It worked. Almost 3 million hits later, EricCarmen.com not only brought the fans together, we helped bring a band together. The original Raspberries played their last gig in November 1973. They reunited on November 26, 2004—and the rest is history.

Sadly, the other thing that will be history, is this website's forum.

It served its purpose, for sure. And over the years was the source of many heartfelt laughs, spirited arguments, indelible memories and long-lasting friendships. Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter...those are the places we visit daily. Not website message boards.

So we'll be turning out the lights and locking up.

On January 1, 2019, there'll be a streamlined EricCarmen.com—with content people look for on websites these days: biographical info, links to music, maybe an interview or two. But the EC.com Community here has served its purpose.

So, pat yourself on your back. You deserve it. Here's to everyone who visited, participated, helped make something "They said would never happen"...happen.

My thanks to all of you.

Bernie

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Truly the end of an era.  Although I haven't posted often, I've continued to check and see what's up.  My thanks and appreciation to Bernie for the love and effort he's always put into this site.  May your life be good.

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Kirk   

Well, this is certainly a sad day, although I've been mourning the decline of the EC.com message board for awhile now.  This site has given us everything Bernie mentioned and more; nothing could exceed the interaction we had with Eric and his music- the opportunity to hear his stories, learn about his music, and know more about the man who has given so  many of us the soundtrack of our lives.  

It's no secret that Eric is my musical hero.  When I found this website I didn't know what to expect, but I knew I'd found a home for all things Eric.  So much so that this website has been my home page ever since.  EC.com gave more than this fan could ever have hoped for.  When the reunion concerts were happening and I was approaching the band for a picture, Eric yells out, "Kirk"!  I went from fan to being on a first-name basis with my music idol.  This is something that never would have happened if not for EC.com.  And that's just one example of how this website changed  my life  

So, although this decision saddens my heart, it is with gratitude that I thank Bernie for all of his efforts over the past 20 years.  What a ride it has been.

Just one more thing, Bernie- can we go out with a bang and have the biggest Santa Bernie ever?  That would put an exclamation point on it!

As I've always said to you, "Thanks for all you do."  Make that 'heart felt' thanks! 

Kirk  

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As somone once said - "love is all that matters."  Know this site was created by a loving spirit.

I had a blast here and wish you and yours every happiness in this lifetime and beyond.

Mary Ellen 😘

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Back in 1997, I worked for an electronics company that was switching everything to a computer driven system, something I had zero interest in learning. The IT person came into my office and showed me some documents she had printed out for me from this website. She told me she always heard Eric Carmen music coming out of my office on my CD player, so she knew she had to find a way to convince me to get on board and teach me how to use the internet and she was quite correct by finding me EC info. So, without this website, I'd guessing I never learn to use the internet!!!!

I cannot thank Bernie enough for the yeoman work he has put into this site, from the incredible articles and musical rarities to the message boards and so much more.

I have met so many life long friends on here. When I heard about this change a little while ago from my longtime pal Kirk, I started jotting down some names that I wanted to mention that have become an integral part of my last twenty years, but I had to stop when I hit forty and still did not have them all, so I cannot go that route and risk forgetting someone. So, just let me say that some of my incredible memories from here include meeting friends from Ohio to Canada to New Zealand to Japan!

Because of this site, I became part of fantasy sports leagues for the four major sports that are all named after the Raspberries or Eric Carmen, some that started thirteen years ago and are still active with Raspberries brothers and sisters. That became a major daily part of my life. Because of this site, I met my fantasy brothers Mitch, John (angelina), Beatle Jay (and his amazing wife Lisa), and Paulie Mississippi. Because of this site, I met the best guitar player in the land at a Wally Bryson solo show, my bud, Mike Miller, (MAM here) that plays on my newest record on many songs and hopefully, always will. Because of this site, I met my dear friend Seth Swirsky, who I speak to daily on the phone for the past six years about music, sports, and relationships. Because of this site, I met my long time brothers from other mothers, Marvin and Larry.  Because of this site, my great pal Paulie started playing songs of mine like "Stephanie" and "One More Night" on his radio show, fulfilling a dream of mine as a musician. Because of this site, I formed magical friendships with people like Diane, Marlene, Gina (Berries Babe), Susie, and Kathy Lee. (I could go on and on, no disrespect to anyone, but I just need to streamline this to people I talk with regularly.)  Because of this site, I got to see the Raspberries reunite!!!!!!! Because of this site, I got an email from Bernie in 2004 that said "Eric wants you to look over the Chicago advertising and radio spots and let him know if we are in the right places." I had to read that twice! Because of this site, Kay Bryson emailed me and thanked me for doing the legwork and invited me to the after show party to hang out with the band!

Just like Kirk said above, I was at a hotel in Chicago and Jim and Eric saw me wearing a Blackhawks jacket and Jim said "you must be Blackhawkpat". If that wasn't enough,  the craziest thing of all???? One very late night on here, Eric Carmen gave me songwriting advice, some things he told me that changed my writing.....and frankly, my life. WOW!

I will never forget being in Cleveland on that first reunion show, meeting the band and afterwards running into Bernie and he had this glorious wide eyed look on his face and he said to me in a very  loud volume,  "Pat, do you believe it????? Do you believe what we ****** just saw????"

Some nights, I still don't believe it, Bernie, but without you, my friend, none of the above happens, so a hearty thank you for not only being a friend, but giving us this message board, so all of the above could happen for me. I look forward to seeing what you add to the site in the future because whatever it will be, it will be great, because you are all class.

 

 

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Bernie you started a great thing here. I will forever be grateful for you and your website. I won a contest many years ago on "Weekend at Bernie's" putting a funny remark under a picture taken from the party. Now it would be a meme I guess. I won a personal autographed picture from E.C. to me.

I also met wonderful people and got closer to one of my favorite artists. I hope to still be in touch with everyone here on Facebook, Instagram, etc.

Love to all of you.

Sincerely,

Terry Bohannon aka, Foolin' Myself (my favorite E.C. song still since 1980.

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darlene   

When my school system was encouraging teachers to learn how to do all their routine tasks on the computer and introducing computer software for grades and grade books, I resisted. My husband decided it was time to connect to the internet, but I didn't want any part of it.  In an effort to convince me, he carted me off to the public library and began a demonstration.  I wasn't one bit enthusiastic. In desperation, he typed "Eric Carmen" in the search bar and UP popped "Raspbernie"'s website, EricCarmen.com.  All these years, adoring Raspberries and Eric music in isolation, I had no idea there was a whole website dedicated to it.  Several hours later, I was still  happily entranced at the computer, and when Herman said "Let's go home," my reply was "How quickly can we get connected to the internet?"  I was a brand new member of EC.com in short order, and in rock and roll Heaven!  I still thought "Raspbernie" was some guy probably out in California and was absolutely bowled over when standing in line to see Eric's first performance onstage after 16 years, to meet Bernie and Ken Sharp in line in New Brunswick and find out that "Raspbernie" had only lived a few miles from me all this time.

Having harbored and dream and absolute belief that Raspberries would reunite, even when everyone laughed at me and said "Yeah, right!" , I watched in amazement as the membership and events on this website grew and it evolved and became the engine by which "the dream" became reality.  Late night chats with Eric and Jim and so many EC.com friends were amazing events. Becoming connected to those who knew and recognized the "magic" of the music was an honor and a privilege, not to mention becoming friends with Bernie and truly getting to know Eric and the guys, and finally being able to TELL them how much their music meant to us all these years and THANK them for being the sountrack of our lives.

This labor of love is unique--there will never be another like it--and I thank "Raspbernie" from the bottom of my heart for helping us all live the dream.  The community forum may fade, but the music that bound us all together will remain forever, and the experiences and love shared here will remain forever inscribed in our hearts.  As our beautiful Susie Bouvier said, "If the reunion can happen, then Hall of Fame will too," and she's right. She suggested a "homecoming" of our members and friends before the forum fades into history. I think that would be a fitting tribute to this labor of love.  Thank you, "Raspbernie," for this magnificent gift.  Because of you, we are no longer islands, but will be connected forever. With much love, Dar

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Ok, I’m back! Thanks Bernie for putting this all together, getting me addicted to the forum, Shaming, err, convincing the guys to reunite, and changing history! Oh, and thanks for this April Fools joke about shutting down the community! Really funny! But kind of cruel...Lew Bundles might not get it...😧

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Wow...:(

As I've mentioned over the years, I was so internet impaired that when I found the EC website I thought the main page was it! For years I would check out the main page not being aware that I could push another button and find other pages, and of course the message board. I joined the board late in 2004 right before the reunion action. I have met so many wonderful people!! I'm sure I'll expound more before the new year.

Much love to my friend Bernie!:)

Tim

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marlene   

So much I want to say about what this board has meant to me....but the words just won't come right now. Much love to my wonderful EC.Com family. :wub:

Bernie, you're the best!!! Thanks for everything! :heartpump:

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LC   

Oh, man... This is truly sad news. 

Say it ain't so, Bernie. 

In fact, can you reconsider? What if we all promised to come by and post every week? 

I have a little Catholic guilt here—I had so much fun on EC.com for so many years. I discovered it around 2001 when I stumbled across an interview I did with Eric that was published in, like, 1988 (Dirty Dancing era) and that miraculously appeared on the relatively new Internet thing. I joined the message board not long after, and in the years that followed, I had lots of fun (and some aggravation—who can forget those passionate arguments with the neo-conservatives here? 

Without this site, there wouldn't have been a Raspberries reunion—we all know that to be true. And during that span, 2004 through 2009, the sporadic reunion shows fueled this site. So did the talk of Eric Carmen solo tours. And so did the frequent appearance here of Eric himself, who always posted heady and articulate material on everything from music to cars to politics to books—and even Archie, Betty, Veronica, and Jughead. 

As the years "kept slippin' away," the Raspberries reunion fizzled, the talk of EC solo shows subsided, and the lure of Facebook and Twitter seemed to pull people away. So too did life, I'm sure, for many of us. Work and families and our increasingly complicated lifestyle demand more time than ever. For me, I know that just having a cellphone with me at all times means my work is with me at all times—who can punch out anymore? And with a daughter in college and another just a couple years away, well, I tend to take on as much work as I can get.

So, I do feel a little guilty for being part of the one-time regular crew that dissipated over the years.

Bernie, old friend, I don't blame you for shutting and locking the doors. But... can we have a reprieve of a few months? I"m not joking—I literally want to go through and read lots of posts that I loved here. In fact, it's something I actually have done every once in a while—binge-reading at EC.com. I'd come in and nose around and see where the thread take me, and two or three hours would go by, and I"d have to move, but would enjoy the memories.

And yes, there are so many great memories here! 

Bernie, you rock for even starting this site in the first place, and for upkeeping it all these years. Sincere and hearty thanks! 

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Kirk   

Bernie, LC brings up a good point...if you are not dissuaded to close the message board from this outpouring of affection, would it be possible to archive it?

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susie b   

Hoping we can work some magic to save the message board.

Thanking Eric for creating the music which bonded our souls and Bernie for creating the site that bonded our hearts.

😘

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elle4ec   

Oh Bernie, this is such excruciatingly sad news. You know, I can honestly say, that I’ve had more fun and gained more musical knowledge here at EricCarmen.com, not only about Eric😍, but about music in general, than any other website I’ve ever visited. And it certainly wasn’t only about the music. I learned here that it’s never a bad thing to love and to be passionate about things you truly believe in. I also learned lots of life lessons here, and I’m realizing more and more, that the years I was active here, actually helped me to evolve on a personal level, into more of my authentic self...I gained the courage to follow my heart. I’d give up Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat, to get back to the atmosphere of musical comeraderie and passion of like-minded music lovers, like it was here, around the time I joined back in 2008. I may have been late to the party, but the those years and times that followed, were like being at the best party ever...right from the comfort of home!! I’ll never forget many of the awesome individuals that I grew to know and love here, and I’ll always be indebted to Duane, for introducing me to this site. Eric Carmen, the man and the music, will forever be a favorite of mine, and it was beyond wonderful getting to know him and his stellar library of musical works, on an intimate, up-close and personal level.

 Bernie, I’m with some of the others, if there is any way the Community forum section and threads could be archived, it would mean more to me than you could ever know. Like my wonderful friend LC, has mentioned, If I could continue to access and read the threads, it would be like revisiting some of the the glory days here, and to have a place where I could go, and be able to hop back on to the most fun-fillled, exciting musical knowledge ride that I’ve ever been on!

And what a ride it has been, Bernie. I will always be indebted to you for all the endless work, blood, sweat and tears that you’ve sacrificed all these years, to bring all of us a truly exceptional website. Words can’t express the thanks I have for the memories to you, Eric, and all the members here, for truly bringing me some of the best moments of my life, on or off the internet. 

As difficult as it is to do this, as it’s like a little part of me is dying, I think it’s only fitting to close here with a verse from Eric’s, “Boats Against The Current”...A song, along with its beautifully haunting and poetic lyrics, that is, in my opinion, one of the very best pieces of music that has ever been written:

I know it’s over

You know it’s over

We’re just goin’ through the motions

But we’re sailin’ separate oceans, world’s apart

...And you know it’s breaking my heart”💔

Love, Elle

 

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Wow. Very sad news indeed. I count this site as one of the most precious things that I discovered in my lifetime. Back in the days when I thought I might be the only Eric Carmen fan in the world, I found this site. It's still a daily stop for me. Just like all those days when I walked into record stores and went directly to the E's to see, if by chance, I'd find something new by Eric, I still log on here daily to see, if by chance, I'll find some exciting news. I've have had tremendous enjoyment over the years reading the discussions, and learning SO much about Raspberries, Eric, and music in general. Though I do understand that there is much work and cost involved in keeping it going, I would never want to see it go. There are so many wonderful people I've met here, and wish I could thank every one of them if I could. Most of all, thank you Bernie for making my world a better place.

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Kirk   

Craig, I know you're one of the die-hards and one of the few that are still regulars here, but I've got to tell you something- you need to look in the "C" section to find new stuff from Eric! LOL!!:D

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James   

Twitter, nor facebook, nor any social media........could, or can, ever hold a candle to this message board.

Very sad news, maybe necessary, but still, I got a little choked up reading Bernie´s initial post here.

I made a lot of friends here. If Bernie, or any of you guys ever need something, don´t hesitate to ask, you´ve got a friend in James. My e-mail address is jjentgen@fostrian.com.

Viva Ec.com !!

:-)

 

 

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I am also among those that would love to be able to access the old posts if that is somehow possible. I was just searching the other day for the thread that had members eulogizing me when somehow the rumor started that I had passed. It was creepy and yet hilarious.

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