Gary DeCarlo, the voice and co-writer of Steam‘s classic hit “Na Na Hey Hey (Kiss Him Goodbye)” has died. He’d recently entered hospice after his cancer — which had been in remission for several years — returned in 2016.
The Bridgeport, Connecticut native was a veteran of suburban New York bands, a session player and a singer when he collaborated with Paul Leka and Dale Frasheur on the bouncy song that hit number-one in 1969 — and enjoyed a second life as a ballpark anthem. But he never originally received proper the recognition for his role — the “band” never existed. The lineup sent to appear on American Bandstand and on tour included no one from the single.
DeCarlo finally began to claim his name as the voice of Steam in the past decade, performing in package shows and appearing at fan fests, including the 2010 Rock Con in New Jersey.