If Bruce Springsteen can take it over the top, Meat Loaf can take it five stories higher than that: Todd Rundgren, Music Producer
American rock singer, Meat Loaf, who died on Thursday, is considered an icon for his more-than-energetic stage persona, larger-than-life approach, flamboyance, funny, and rebellious personality. Known for singing Rock’N’Roll tracks with a thundering, operatic energy, Meat Loaf sold over 100 million albums through his more than 50-year-long career, with his debut album ‘Bat Out Of Hell’, becoming as one of the best-selling music album of all time. As his peers mourn the death of an artiste who continued to inspire excellence despite the hardships that came his way, here’s a look at 10 of Meat Loaf’s songs, with titles that read like short stories, that inspire millions across the globe, till today.
'Not A Dry Eye In The House'
Meat Loaf’s last single which went on the charts, the song composed by Jim Steinman and written by Diane Warren, who has also penned several other rock anthems including Aerosmith's ‘I Don't Want to Miss a Thing’, was a typical Steinman-Loaf collaboration with plenty of drama in the piano chords and choir.
‘I’d Lie For You (And That’s The Truth)’
The single, was the titular song from Meat Loaf’s 1996 album, which saw him collaborate with Jim Steinman and Diane Warren, with whom he had previously collaborated with before. The 1996 albim remains his last bit hit album, with the titular song being the most played track from it.
‘Objects in the Rear-View Mirror May Appear Closer Than They Are’
In 1993, Meat Loaf and Jim Steinman collaborated again after a 12-year break from each other, and 16 years since the first ‘Bat Out of Hell album’, for the sequel, picking up from right where they left off: Complete kitchen-sink production by Steinman and Meat Loaf’s three-octave range.
'Paradise by the Dashboard Light'
The eight-and-a-half-minute-long song whooshes by with a zillion complicated time shifts, a funky guitar-and-piano break and a baseball broadcast set to groaning, among many things. Released in 1977 as part of the album ‘Bat Out of Hell’, alongside Ellen Foley, despite its uncommonly long length for a single, it became a staple of classic rock radio.
'Two Out of Three Ain't Bad'
The big power ballad helped make Meat Loaf’s debut album become one of the bestselling albums of all time. Despite the fact that the song peaked at No. 11 on the charts, but it went gold and stayed there for six months! It's one of Meat Loaf's best vocal performances and Steinman's greatest composition.
‘I'd Do Anything for Love (But I Won't Do That)’
After 16 years, nobody really expected the long-awaited sequel to Bat Out of Hell to be a monster hit. But all the elements were in place on the album's opening track and lead single: the big sound (produced by Steinman this time), the long title, the epic length. Nobody really could figure out what the song is about either. Doesn't matter: Both album and single reached No. 1, firsts for Meat Loaf.
‘Hot Patootie – Bless My Soul’
Despite the fact that he only had less than 10 minutes in the 1975 film ‘The Rocky Horror Picture Show’, he makes a big impression with his single song. Playing Dr. Frank N' Furter's original experiment, Meat Loaf comes riding on his motorbike, launching a million Halloween costumes in the process and instantly consolidating the star persona the singer would have for much of his career.
‘Rock and Roll Dreams Come Through’
When Steinman decided to release his own solo album ‘Bad For Good’ in 1981, he used the same single in the 1993 album ‘Bat Out Of Hell 2’, which peaked at number 13 on the charts. Apart from its usual musical brilliance, presence of a (then) 19-year-old Angelina Jolie in the music video, elevated its popularity.
'It's All Coming Back to Me Now’
Steinman and Meat Loaf were so tied in the public's imagination that in 2006, Meat Loaf even had to cover a Steinman song he had written for another artist. The singer had tried to record the song for years, but Steinman had seen it as a song for a woman – and even won a court movement to stop Meat Loaf releasing it. As such, the most famous version is the one released by Celine Dion in 1996, but Meat Loaf finally got his chance to record it a decade later.
‘Bat Out of Hell’
The nearly 10-minute-song is the album's toughest song, a revved-up rocker that falls somewhere between biker bar and Broadway, and a sprawling opening title track to the album that sets the stage for other tracks to follow.