Back in my swinging single days, there was a good stretch where I played my "Bat Out Of Hell" CD while I did the shit-shower-shave thing every Saturday night. It was the perfect 46 minutes to get me fired up for a night out chasing ass. And even though I've been hitched for awhile now, it's still a perfect 46 minutes.
Sadly, the booming vocalist and actor known professionally as Meat Loaf, whose one-of-a-kind stage presence was responsible for the throbbing heartbeat one of the decade's unforgettable, seminal albums, died today at 74 per a statement from his family.
Our hearts are broken to announce that the incomparable Meat Loaf passed away tonight surrounded by his wife Deborah, daughters Pearl and Amanda and close friends.
His amazing career spanned 6 decades that saw him sell over 100 Million albums worldwide and star in over 65 movies, including “Fight Club”, “Focus”, “Rocky Horror Picture Show” and “Wayne’s World.”
“Bat Out of Hell” remains one of the top 10 selling albums of all time.
We know how much he meant to so many of you and we truly appreciate all of the love and support as we move through this time of grief in losing such an inspiring artist and beautiful man.
We thank you for your understanding of our need for privacy at this time.
From his heart to your souls…don’t ever stop rocking!
Released in October of 1977, the operatic and at-times bombastic "Bat Out Of Hell" may as well have been referring to copies of the album leaving record stores as Meat Loaf's debut would go on to sell more than 43 million copies. The highlight of the seven-track release was no doubt the reminiscences of two regretful teen lovers whose heavy petting is narrated by Yankee legend Phil Rizzuto in the 8:28 party classic "Paradise By The Dashboard Light". Ah, the '70s. The back-and-forth between Meat Loaf and Ellen Foley is epic stuff. But that was hardly the only hit. The title track, "Two Out Of Three Ain't Bad", and "You Took The Words Right Out Of My Mouth" are all still terrific spins.
Music wasn't the only medium that the man born as Marvin Lee Aday toiled in. Even before his music success, he appeared in the cult classic THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW. He also showed up in WAYNE'S WORLD, LEAP OF FAITH, and CRAZY IN ALABAMA before his performance of "Bob" in FIGHT CLUB introduced him to a whole new audience,
His death comes less than a year after his collaborator on "Bat", Jim Steinman passed away at 73. 16 years after they first made magic with "Bat", the two returned with "Bat Out of Hell II: Back Into Hell" and produced a #1 hit with "I Would Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do That)". That's when my younger sister became a Meat Loaf fan and asked me to take her to see him in concert (on what would end up being the night of the O.J. chase). Being a huge fan of his early work, I didn't need to be convinced. I was glad I went because I was lucky enough to see Meat Loaf do his animated and sweatily entertaining routine in person as well as hear him sing the "Paradise" back-and-forth live.
The man was one hell of an entertainer and let us with something every musician wishes they did---a timeless, classic album. "Bat Out Of Hell" is in a category all its own and that's because of the soul Meat Loaf brought to it. Condolences to his family and friends.