SMASH MOUTH's Founding Singer STEVE HARWELL Dead At 56
September 4, 2023
Steve Harwell, the 56-year-old former lead singer of the rock group SMASH MOUTH, has died, band manager Robert Hayes confirmed. In a statement to Rolling Stone, Hayes said Harwell died at his home in Boise, Idaho "surrounded by family and friends." He added that the musician "passed peacefully and comfortably."
"Steve has been retired from SMASH MOUTH for two years now, and the band continues to tour with new vocalist Zach Goode," Hayes said. "That said, Steve's legacy will live on through the music. With Steve, SMASH MOUTH has sold over 10 Million albums worldwide-wide and topped the charts with two #1 hit singles, five Top 40 singles, three Hot 100 singles, four Billboard 200 albums and a Grammy nomination not to mention the hundreds of film and television placements and of course those musical features in Shrek."
He continued: "Steve's iconic voice is one of the most recognizable voices from his generation. He loved the fans and loved to perform. Steve Harwell was a true American Original. 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."
TMZ was the first to report the news on Sunday that Harwell was in the final stage of liver failure after previously undergoing treatment for alcohol abuse at a hospital.
The SMASH MOUTH frontman had suffered from previous health complications, including 2013 cardiomyopathy and Wernicke's Encephalopathy diagnoses.
When he announced his retirement in 2021, Harwell said he was doing so due to his mental and physical health.
A source close to Harwell explained to People magazine that the musician had "suffered profusely" with addiction over the years, which had led to some of his medical and mental health issues.
Formed in 1994 in San Jose, California, SMASH MOUTH's original lineup consisted of Harwell, Kevin Coleman on drums, Greg Camp on guitar, and Paul De Lisle on bass.
With Harwell on vocals, SMASH MOUTH was nominated for a Grammy for "Best Pop Performance By A Duo Or Group" for "All Star", a song which later achieved cult status after its appearance on the soundtrack of the 2001 animated film "Shrek".
"All Star" has close to a billion streams on Spotify.
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