With the 2017 festivities already in full swing, the River Days event committee was thrown an unexpected curve ball on Saturday evening when their scheduled national act was forced to cancel their appearance.
Lead vocalist Steve Harwell of the multi-platinum and Grammy nominated band Smash Mouth experienced difficulty breathing and was rushed to a hospital in Memphis prior to the band’s scheduled concert Thursday evening. Two years ago Harwell was diagnosed with cardiomyopathy, which affects the hearts ability to pump normally, leading the singer to experience numerous similar spells over the past few years.
According to River Days festival officials, doctors would not release Harwell from the Tennessee hospital, resulting in the Band cancelling shows Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
With the national performance act cancelling for the first time in over twenty years, the River Days committee was left scrambling for an alternative. Luckily the band Electrik Circus of Lima, who had performed the previous night at River Days, was still in town.
“We called them and asked if there was any way they would be able to perform again. One band member had already left Portsmouth, but dropped everything to come back and perform for a second night,” said festival official Cathy Hunter.
Electrik Circus performed the first time on Friday night and had a steady crowd despite the heavy rain.
“It was amazing to see everyone standing and singing along in the rain. They put on a show like there were a million people watching,” said Hunter. Although River Days was saddened to learn of Smash Mouth’s cancellation, they were happy to have Electric Circus fill in on such short notice.
“We were so grateful they were able to make arrangements to take the stage again,” said Robin Honaker of the events committee.
Electrik Circus took the stage at 9 p.m. on Saturday and performed their renditions of classic rock songs of the 80’s and 90’s with music from bands like Aerosmith and Guns N’ Roses.
As of Sunday September 3rd Steve Harwell has been released from the hospital and Smash Mouth will be performing their regularly scheduled concerts, according to the band’s twitter page.
Reach: Ivy Potter (740) 353-3101 Extension 1932