Smash Mouth lead singer and co-founder Steve Harwell is retiring from the hit San Jose, California-born band he started in 1994.
“[I’m] looking forward to counting myself as one of the band’s newest fans,” said Harwell in an interview with TMZ. Of his bandmates, he added that “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.”
Harwell’s decision comes after a recent performance earlier this month in New York City where the frontman began slurring his words. Band representatives said it was then he realized he couldn’t go on and needed to continue to address his heart issues.
Harwell, 54, reportedly suffers from “cardiomyopathy, which causes his heart to become enlarged, ultimately weakening his ability to efficiently pump blood,” says the website, Audacy.
Smash Mouth, which rose to fame in the ‘90s and 2000s, released giant hits throughout those years, including “All Star” and “Walkin’ on the Sun.”
“To our loyal and amazing fans, thank you, all of this was possible because of you,” Harwell said. “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.”
(Photo by Earl Gibson III/WireImage)