A Look At The Friendship Between Smash Mouth's Steve Harwell & Guy Fieri

High-energy, spiky hair, wraparound sunglasses — the late singer Steve Harwell and chef Guy Fieri both embody an over-the-top, rock-star look that became iconic. While countless people noted similarities between the two in their style and personalities, it's no surprise that the celebrities forged quite a friendship. The lead singer of Smash Mouth and the mayor of Flavortown often appeared together to support each other, chill together, or just rock out.

Harwell, the longtime frontman of the band that found fame in the 1990s and early 2000s, died on Sept. 4, 2023. The "All Star" singer passed away just a day after news broke that he was in hospice care due to liver failure. "Steve will be remembered for his unwavering focus and impassioned determination to reach the heights of pop stardom," the official announcement read on the band's Twitter, calling Harwell "a larger-than-life character who shot up into the sky like a Roman candle."

"Larger-than-life character" is an excellent way to describe both Harwell and Fieri. After all, the "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives" host found fame thanks to his own colorful personality as well as his cooking skills after winning the "Next Food Network Star" competition. Therefore, it's no surprise the two got along.

Steve Harwell and Guy Fieri had a lot in common

The unique energy of the late Steve Harwell and chef Guy Fieri might be best quantified as in-your-face-but-here-to-have-a-good-time rockstar vibes. It's easy to see how many people found the likeness between the "Walking on the Sun" singer and the "Flavortown" restaurateur to be intriguing. As one Twitter user put it back in 2018, "#TheBigMysteryIs whether Guy Fieri and Steve Harwell were separated at birth." Some people were still making that mistake in 2023, as another person tweeted after Harwell's death: "I was today years old when I found out Guy Fieri was NOT the lead singer of Smash Mouth ... Prayers up to the *actual* singer, Steve Harwell."

Conspiracy theorists were able to put the idea that the two were actually the same person to rest when Fieri and Harwell struck up a friendship and appeared in public together. The chef and musician both lived in the San Francisco Bay area at one time. The two were at the opening of Fieri's restaurant Johnny Garlic's in 2011, where Harwell called the chef "a dear friend of mine."

On social media, there are several photos of Fieri and Harwell hanging out over the years — in 2018, they snapped a selfie with Greg Camp, Harwell's fellow Smash Mouth member, after a concert. They were also captured barbecuing outside in a 2019 photo shared on Smash Mouth's Twitter.

Smash Mouth singer and Flavortown chef appeared on stage together

If fans needed further confirmation that Steve Harwell and Guy Fieri were different people, they got a closer look at the two together during a Smash Mouth concert in 2018. A fan at a concert in Petaluma, California, got photographic evidence of Fieri onstage with the band and shared it on Reddit. "After a couple songs, (Harwell) said, 'Hey, brotha man, come out here!' And up walked Guy," said the poster (via SFGate). "They put on a great show and Guy being there was the perfect amount of weirdness."

In the years after the band's mainstream success, Harwell's struggles with alcohol became public knowledge. The singer was diagnosed with cardiomyopathy as a result of his addiction in 2013. Harwell ended up leaving Smash Mouth in 2021 due to physical and mental health issues after appearing under the influence at a concert and apparently throwing up a Nazi salute. He also caught flak for dismissing the seriousness of the COVID-19 pandemic.

While it's clear that Harwell had serious issues to deal with throughout his life, it seems that he and Fieri found some happy moments to bond over their signature over-the-top style.

If you or anyone you know needs help with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).