Marvin Lee Aday, professionally known as Meat Loaf, went to the great gig in the sky on January 20, 2022. Meat Loaf had a powerful, wide-ranging soulful voice, which greatly contributed to “Bat Out Of Hell” being a huge success. However, success for Meat Loaf didn’t come easy.
In many ways, Meat Loaf’s career serves as a valuable lesson to all of us. Meat Loaf had challenges in establishing himself in the music business. Yet, despite those obstacles, Meat Loaf continued to stay on track, and he eventually persevered.
At the time “Bat out of Hell” was released in 1977, two genres of music influenced the recording industry; namely, Disco and Punk Rock. Noted rock acts of that time, such as Rod Stewart and The Bee Gees, dabbled in Disco. Even Ringo Starr experimented with Disco in his 1977 LP, “Ringo the 4th.” The explosion of Punk Rock in 1977 gave the world a taste of bands like The Clash and The Ramones.
Given the music scene of 1977, a concept album; a rock opera, about the angst of being a teenager was outdated and unfashionable. And, yet, in spite of the harsh criticism that “Bat Out Of Hell” received at the time of its release, Meat Loaf and Jim Steinman pulled off a tremendous “coup.”
“Bat Out Of Hell” is now ranked among Rolling Stones top 500 albums of all time. The album continues to sell about 200,000 copies a year; it has sold an estimated 34-40 million copies worldwide. The album has stayed on the United Kingdom’s album chart for 522 weeks, making it the UK’s third longest charting studio album behind Fleetwood Mac’s “Rumors” and Pink Floyd’s “The Dark Side of the Moon.”
Meat Loaf didn’t let the challenges he had to endure get in the way of his ultimate goal. Meat Loaf’s fortitude, ambition, and determination allowed him to overcome the challenges and obstacles he had to face in the highly competitive music industry. Meat Loaf’s belief in himself and his inner strength gave him the confidence he needed to become a legend in the music business.
Meat Loaf’s path to Rock stardom is an inspiration to all of us to pursue our own goals and ambitions, especially in the midst of naysayers.
Meat Loaf has taken his final curtain call. He has played his last encore. We know that he has found “Paradise” – not “by the Dashboard Light.”
Meat Loaf, Vaya con Dios! You will be sorely missed.
John Di Genio and Albert J. Cupo