Pomp, pathos and bombast, tails, silk scarf and frilly shirt: for the US singer Meat Loaf it was never too much. Celebrated world successes and dramatic crashes shaped his career. He made comebacks again and again and songs like “I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That)” became classics.
But drugs and health problems did not let go of the singer. On the night of Friday, January 21, 2022, the industry journal “Deadline” reported on his death, citing the family of the 74-year-old and his agents; this was also announced in a post on the musician’s verified Facebook page.
With “Bat out of Hell” Meat Loaf, who is one of the greats in rock ‘n’ roll history, released one of the best-selling albums of all time to date in 1977 and became a world star overnight. With “Bat out of Hell II: Back into Hell” (1993) and “Bat out of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose” (2006) he made comebacks and a successful trilogy.
Meat Loaf was born Marvin Lee Aday in Dallas, Texas. In an interview, he once explained how he got his nickname, which translates to meatloaf in German: “My father called me ‘Meat’ because I was so red as a baby. At some point in high school, my football team called me ‘Meat Loaf’.”
The singer with the voluminous voice began his musical career at the age of 20. He also studied acting. Meat Loaf moved to Los Angeles, auditioned for roles in musicals and secured engagements in Hair and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. During rehearsals for the musical “More than You Deserve” in 1974, he met the lyricist, composer and music producer Jim Steinman, with whom he created “Bat out of Hell” shortly afterwards.
depression and alcohol addiction
On the following world tour, the rock colossus ruined his four-octave voice. Meat Loaf crashed: depression and alcoholism hit him. His managers sued him, he was broke and his friendship with Steinman ended. The following records were not very successful.
But Meat Loaf got to his feet. In the early 1990s he was reconciled with Jim Steinman and they produced the second “Bat out of Hell” album with him, which today stands for one of the greatest comebacks in music history. The first release “I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That)” conquered the charts – 16 years after his first international success, Meat Loaf was back at the top.
His songs are often about the victorious battle of good over evil. «The rule for each of my records, actually the rule of my whole life. was always the same,” Meat Loaf once said in an interview. “One day we will look back – and laugh.”