After a ‘chaotic’ New York show, Smash Mouth singer Steve Harwell has announced his retirement.
Steve Harwell has announced his departure from Smash Mouth.
The rock band’s frontman, who is best known for the 1990s hits “All Star” and “Walkin’ on the Sun,” announced his departure from the stage due to mental and physical health issues, according to Entertainment Weekly. He was caught on camera slurring his words and yelling at the audience during a festival in upstate New York.
The 54-year-old singer was diagnosed with cardiomyopathy eight years ago and has since had medical setbacks such as heart failure and acute Wernicke’s encephalopathy, which affects motor functions including speech and memory.
“I’ve dreamed of being a Rockstar performing in front of sold-out arenas since I was a kid, and I’ve been so lucky to live out that dream,” Harwell said in a statement obtained by EW.
“It’s been an honor performing with you all these years, and I can’t think of anyone else I would have preferred gone on this wild ride with,” he said to his bandmates.
Harwell went on, “Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, I tried everything I could to overcome my physical and mental health concerns and play in front of you one final time, but I couldn’t.” Harwell seems to be alluding to his weekend performance with Smash Mouth at the Big Sip beer festival in Bethel, New York. He garnered news for his bizarre antics, including pretending to curse at the audience from the stage.
The performance was captured on film by a TikTok user called Haley, who characterized it as the “most wild show I’ve ever gone to.”
During the performance, the band had technical difficulties, and Harwell dropped a drink, swayed onstage, and raised his middle finger.
Due to one of his episodes, the singer “forgot where he was [and]his own songs and had little knowledge of his environment,” an unnamed source acquainted with the matter told EW. The tape is also “unfortunate,” according to the insider, and does not reflect who Harwell is.
According to the source, Harwell has struggled with addiction throughout the years, which has led to mental health difficulties.
Prior to his announcement, TMZ speculated that Harwell was preparing to leave Smash Mouth, but he has instead announced his retirement.
The singer thanked fans for helping the band sell over 10 million albums in his retirement statement released on Tuesday. The Washington Newsday Brief News is a daily newspaper published in Washington, D.C.