Smash Mouth frontman Steve Harwell, the “All Star” singer of the band popular in the 1990s and 2000s, has died. He was 56.
His death was confirmed in a statement to Rolling Stone on Monday. Smash Mouth’s manager Robert Hayes said he “passed peacefully and comfortably” at home in Boise, Idaho “surrounded by friends and family.”
“Steve Harwell was a true American Original,” the statement read. “A larger than life character who shot up into the sky like a Roman candle. Steve should be remembered for his unwavering focus and impassioned determination to reach the heights of pop stardom. And the fact that he achieved this near-impossible goal with very limited musical experience makes his accomplishments all the more remarkable.”
“His only tools were his irrepressible charm and charisma, his fearlessly reckless ambition, and his king-size cajones. Steve lived a 100 percent full-throttle life. Burning brightly across the universe before burning out.”
A cause of death was not given.
The ex-frontman, who struggled with alcoholism, had suffered liver failure and was told he only had days left to live, his manager said.
“Steve is resting at home being cared for by his fiancé and hospice care,” Hayes told People.
Harwell’s family and friends reportedly visited him at home where he was in hospice, the manager said, after his liver disease progressed too far.
“Even though Steve has not been with Smash Mouth for 2 years now, and the band continues to tour with new vocalist Zach Goode, his legacy will live on through the music,” he added.
Two years ago, Harwell announced his retirement from the band which formed in San Jose, Calif. the 1990s and churned out hits including “Can’t Get Enough of You Baby,” “Walkin’ on the Sun” and a cover of the Monkees’ “I’m a Believer” — many of which were featured in the movie “Shrek.”
“Ever since I was a kid, I dreamed of being a Rockstar performing in front of sold-out arenas and have been so fortunate to live out that dream,” Harwell said at the time. “To my bandmates, it’s been an honor performing with you all these years and I can’t think of anyone else I would have rather gone on this wild journey with.”
“To our loyal and amazing fans, thank you, all of this was possible because of you,” he added. “I’ve tried so hard to power through my physical and mental health issues, and to play in front of you one last time, but I just wasn’t able to.”
Harwell’s departure came after an incident in 2021 in which the singer was caught on camera at the Big Sip beer fest in Bethel, NY slurring his words, threatening the audience and seemingly giving a Nazi salute to the crowd.
Reps for Smash Mouth told The Post at the time that he would retire after the incident, which was related to “long-term medical issues” and Hawell had “suffered numerous symptoms directly linked with his current medical situation.”
Harwell reportedly harbored “several types of addiction leading to medical and mental health issues,” his rep said. He was diagnosed with cardiomyopathy eight years prior to the incident and has suffered from heart failure. The Cleveland Clinic notes that cardiomyopathy often stems from “long-term heavy alcohol use.”
SOURCE: New york post