The legendary frontman of Smash Mouth, who is best remembered for songs like “All Star” and “I’m a Believer,” Steve Harwell, tragically departed suddenly at the age of 56. Smash Mouth’s manager, Robert Hayes, confirmed the news of his passing to Rolling Stone on Monday. Harwell passed away in the company of his close friends and family at his Boise, Idaho, home while receiving hospice care.

Steve Harwell made an indisputable contribution to the music industry. He was a major factor in Smash Mouth’s popularity in the 1990s and 2000s as the lead singer. Smash Mouth, a Californian band based in San Jose, rose to fame with their hit songs “Can’t Get Enough of You Baby,” “Walkin’ on the Sun,” and their iconic rendition of The Monkees’ “I’m a Believer.” Numerous songs from this album have a particular place in the hearts of their followers and were included in the well-known film “Shrek.”

An Ending from the Heart

Harwell took the tough choice to leave Smash Mouth two years ago. During the announcement of his retirement, he made an emotional statement thanking everyone for the incredible experience of being a rock star and playing to packed houses. He also expressed his sincere gratitude to his fellow musicians for sharing this amazing experience with them.

In his parting speech, Harwell further said, “To our loyal and amazing fans, thank you, all of this was possible because of you,” expressing his gratitude for the steadfast support of Smash Mouth’s devoted fan base.

Following a difficult spell in 2021 marked by a media-worthy event at the Big Sip beer festival in Bethel, New York, Harwell announced his retirement. He was caught on camera slurring his words, saying offensive things, and seeming to offer the audience the Nazi salute during this event. Smash Mouth reps at the time said that Harwell’s “long-term medical issues” were the reason behind the occurrence, stressing that his struggles with various forms of addiction had left him with serious physical and mental health issues.

Apart from these difficulties, eight years before the occurrence, Harwell was diagnosed with cardiomyopathy—a disorder that is frequently associated with long-term, excessive alcohol consumption—according to the Cleveland Clinic.

A Durable Effect

Steve Harwell’s influence on the music industry was evident despite the difficulties that characterized his later years in the business. Throughout his tenure with Smash Mouth, the group accomplished incredible feats such as selling more than 10 million albums globally, producing two #1 hit songs, five Top 40 hits, three Hot 100 hits, four Billboard 200 albums, and even receiving a Grammy nomination. His distinctive voice, beloved by listeners of all ages, added to the band’s long-lasting popularity.

Smash Mouth manager Robert Hayes highlighted Harwell’s affection for the audience and his passion for performing as he paid respect to his legacy. Audiences will always be moved by Steve Harwell’s voice and music, which will act as a constant reminder of the happiness and nostalgia his songs provided to so many people.