From Rocky Horror to Ghost Hunters, Remember Meat Loaf’s Genre Legacy

Although his seminal 1977 album Bat out of hell would ultimately be his greatest contribution to pop culture, many fans’ first exposure to Meat Loaf as a performer came not through his own music, but through one of cinema’s great cult classics. The singer and actor, born Michael Lee Aday, made an indelible impression when he burst onto the screen as a biker named Eddie in 1975. The Rocky Horror Picture Show, stealing the show even from Tim Curry to sing his “Hot Patootie – Bless My Soul” number.

Although Aday has been best known as a singer since the days of Bat out of hell Released until his death this week at the age of 74, this Rocky Horror appearance (which he took over from the LA stage version) marked the start of a career-long presence in entertainment genre that seemed to enhance and emphasize the cool tinged horror it does Bat out of hell so seductive. His legacy is musical, but his presence across horror, science fiction and fantasy storytelling over the past five decades is also a key part of the work he leaves behind.

Although Bat out of hellThe primary focus of the lyrics was on heightened opera songs about unrequited love and heavy nights in parked cars, a look at the cover revealed both the ambitious nature of composer Jim Steinman’s lyrics and fantastic imagery that would help make the album an all-time album. classic among fans. The cover image, featuring a slightly wolfish, shirtless man roaring out of a graveyard on a motorbike as a winged creature howls in the background, is among the most evocative images in all of rock and gave the Steinman’s epic songs about motorcycle crashes and the dash. romance lit up with an almost creature-feel of functionality. It’s an atmosphere that was further underlined by the album’s two sequels, Bat Out of Hell II: Back to Hell and Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster is Loose, both of which featured music videos that highlighted the gothic, even monster-movie inspired, aspects of musical storytelling.

Ironically, despite first appearing in rocky horror — itself inspired by sci-fi and horror B-movies — and the legendary imagery of Bat out of hell, Aday himself was never really a fan of horror, as he pointed out in a story he told on Eli Roth’s Horror Story podcast last year.

“I get an offer to make a masters of horror, and it was the lead, and it’s called ‘Pelts,’ and Dario Argento was the director,” Aday recalled. And I said ‘Oh, cool, I don’t care.’ So I’m on the phone with him, and he’s talking. And he’s like, ‘So you’re a horror fan?’ And I say “No”. I told him that I’m not a fan of horror movies at all, but Dario was on the phone. The producer just wanted to talk to me, I didn’t know Dario was on the phone.

“And so I hung up the phone, and I get a call from the agent saying, ‘I don’t think they’re going to use you.’ I said ‘Why not?’ They say ‘We’re not sure, we’ll find out.’ They call me back and say ‘Well, Dario Argento was on the phone when you were telling him you didn’t like horror movies.’ I said ‘Yeah?’ And they say, ‘That’s the director.’ I said, ‘Yeah?’ And they say ‘Well, you don’t like horror movies.’ I said “So? ! What does that have to do with playing a character in one? This character knows nothing about… one has nothing to do with the other. Because personally I don’t like them, I don’t bring that element into the character at all!”

He then got the lead role in the masters of horror episode “Pelts” anyway.

Despite his lack of personal connection to horror, Aday has certainly made an impression on the genre over the years, with appearances in everything from Monsters at Tales from the Crypt at Stage fright and phantom wars, and as he described on the podcast, he never let his own lack of horror love get in the way of inhabiting a character.

In the 21st century, Meat Loaf has gained a new wave of fans thanks in part not to his appearances in fictional spooky stories, but to his devotion to the real ones. In 2009, the singer and actor made an appearance on SYFY’s original docuseries ghost hunters, assisting the TAPS crew as they investigate haunted sites. He reappeared in 2010 and did not hide his affinity and belief in real-life ghosts from the press.

“I believe there’s something when you die because there are ghosts,” he told Shortlist in 2012. allows you to answer “yes” or “no”. I chased one across the room once. And when we did Bat out of hell I saw a blonde girl in a white dress. I went downstairs and said to the guys, ‘There’s a groupie on the balcony’, and they said, ‘How could she get up there? Everyone came up and there was no one there.”

Interestingly, Aday’s last TV appearance could ultimately be linked to his interest in the paranormal. The singer joined the TAPS team for an episode of the ghost hunters relaunch series on Discovery+. Airing in February, the episode will feature Aday teaming up with investigators to look into the story of a notoriously haunted Tennessee farmhouse.

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