"When the night is over, like a bat out of hell, I'll be gone, gone, gone"
Meat Loaf, born Michael Lee Aday, in Dallas, Texas, sadly passed away on the 20th January at the age of 74. His family were said to be by his side for the last 24 hours of his incredible life. In a post on the star's Facebook page it was announced that Meat Loaf had passed with his wife Deborah by his side.
Meat Loaf; Picture credit Malte Ossowski/Sven Simon PA Images
By anyone's standards Meat Loaf had an incredible career that spanned more than six decades. After making his mark as Eddie in the 1975 film The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Meat Loaf was barely out of the limelight. His on screen presence rivals that of his musical impact although for most Meat Loaf will always be remembered for his seminal, best selling album, Bat Out Of Hell.
Meat Loaf's record breaking 1977 debut album, produced by Todd Rundgren and written by Jim Steinman, is a phenomenon of it's very own. Bat Out Of Hell remains one of the top-ten best selling albums of all time; it still sells in excess of 200,000 copies a year, has sold more than 14 million copies in the U.S alone, has sold more than 43 million worldwide and has spent a jaw dropping 522 weeks on the UK album charts.
Bat Out Of Hell had enormous appeal, and not just from the Rock fraternity. Meat Loaf's appeal brought together a wider demographic that just loved his powerhouse performances and outstanding delivery. The five singles, including the album's title track, Two Out Of Three Ain't Bad and the lead single, You Took the Words Right Out of My Mouth (Hot Summer Night) saw to it that Meat Loaf had a continual presence on both the album and singles charts for years.
Whilst his follow up albums may never have replicated the success of his debut he did see a massive uplift in sales and a resurgence of interest when he and Steinman resurrected the Bat Out Of Hell theme on Bat Out Of Hell II in 1993. The album enjoyed huge success and spawned a monster in the track, I'd Do Anything for Love (But I Won't Do That). Meat Loaf's biggest single for years went to number one in 28 countries, spent 21 weeks on the UK singles chart with seven of them being at number one!
As well as releasing 12 studio albums Meat Loaf also had a remarkable film career. After the Rocky Horror Picture Show Meat Loaf went on to star as Tiny in Wayne's World, Dennis in Spiceworld: The Movie, Robert Paulsen in Fightclub, The Lizard in The 51st State, Richard Valbruno in Chasing Ghosts, the motel manager in Beautiful Boy and Sergeant Goodman in The Moment, among many, many others.
Paying tribute to the star, Cher said - "Had So Much Fun With Meatloaf When We Did “Dead Ringer”. Am Very Sorry For His Family,Friends,& Fans. Am I imagining It, or Are Amazing Ppl In The Arts Dying every other Day!?", whilst Stephen Fry said - "I hope paradise is as you remember it from the dashboard light, Meat Loaf. Had a fun time performing a sketch with him on Saturday Live way back in the last century", adding, "he had the quality of being simultaneously frightening and cuddly, which is rare and rather wonderful". Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber wrote, "The vaults of heaven will be ringing with rock".
Meat Loaf was a larger than life character. He was a big man that made a massive impact. He sold over 100 million records, made more than 65 movies and was a household name across the globe. He is survived by his wife, Deborah, and daughters, Pearl and Amanda. R.I.P. Meat Loaf.
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