April 20, 2024


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Steve Harwell, former lead singer of Smash Mouth, has died at the age of 56

Steve Harwell, former lead singer of Smash Mouth, has died at the age of 56

Steve Harwell, the former lead singer of the rock band Smash Mouth, best known for its hit song “All Star” in 1999, died on Monday. He was 56.

The band’s manager, Robert Hayes, confirmed his death at his home in Boise, Idaho, and said the cause was liver failure.

Smash Mouth was formed in 1994 in San Jose, California, and consisted of Harwell, lead vocalist, Kevin Coleman on drums, Greg Camp on guitar, and Paul de Lisle on bass. The group debuted with the song “Walkin’ on the Sun” in 1997, which appeared on their debut album, “Fush Yu Mang”.

“Walking on the Sun” changed music. “It changed the way people listen to music,” said Harwell. Rolling Stone in 2019. “It was so different, it was so unusual, it was so special. He had this sound that we created. Ask anyone trying to imitate us, you can’t. You can’t.”

The band enjoyed even greater success with the release of their next album, “Astro Lounge,” in 1999, and their hit single, “All Star.” The song, which was nominated for a Grammy Award, has also been featured in several films, and gained new popularity two years later when it appeared in the opening credits of Shrek, the Oscar-winning animated film about a ghoul voiced by Mike. Myers.

“We had no idea how big of a Shrek movie it was,” Harwell said in a 2019 interview with Rolling Stone. (“All Star” was also featured on the soundtrack to the 1999 movie “Mystery Men”, whose characters appear in the song’s music video.)

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Since then, the “All Star” has lived and become A rich source of parodies on the Internet. And nearly 25 years later, Harwell’s voice is still associated with the song’s iconic opening lines: “Somebody once told me / The world’s gonna roll me / I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed“.

“All Star” has nearly 1 billion streams on Spotify. “Walking on the sunand “I’m a Believer”, a cover of the Monkees song that also appeared on “a partnerThe soundtrack, too, has garnered hundreds of millions of streams.

Harwell left the band in 2021 and retired from performing altogether after a live show in upstate New York during which it was seen Stammering in his words and using profanity. Earlier that year, Harwell had taken a break from performing live due to heart problems, according to several media reports at the time.

Smash Mouth, which has had a rotating lineup over the years, hasn’t released a new studio album in about a decade, but it has released new singles, including “Underground Sun” this year, with a different lead singer.

The band still performed—including one scheduled for Saturday in Illinois—but would forever be associated with “All Star,” something Harwell was well aware of.

“Nobody else can sing that song.” “It has never been the way it is now,” Harwell told Rolling Stone in 2019. I could have pitched this song to a million bands and they would have tried to do it, and it would never have been the same.