28th Jun, 2022

MUSIC MATTERS - Legend Meat Loaf leaves us a legacy of songs and a Coventry connection

Coventry Editorial 3rd Feb, 2022

COVENTRY Music Museum curator Pete Chambers BEM writes for the Observer.

Meat Loaf

I recall seeing the mighty Meat Loaf on the BBC’s Old Grey Whistle Test and being immediately drawn in by the sheer pomp and energy of the man and those amazing epic songs from Jim Steinman.

Like so many others, I rushed out to purchase my copy of ‘Bat Out of Hell’.

It became one of those albums that like Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Rumours’ and Pink Floyd’s ‘Dark Side of The Moon’ that was ubiquitous in every record collection.

Meat Loaf or Marvin Lee Aday has no great local connections as such but as my tribute to this legend of a singer, can I take you back to April 23, 1982?

I was a fledgling reporter/photographer for the Brum Beat publication, I had required a hard-to-get photo pass (I was the only official snapper there that night).

There was no photo pit so as I stood waiting, cameras in tow, leaning on the barrier people free.

That was until Meat Loaf took the stage and I turned in horror to see hundreds of fans racing towards me to take their place front of stage.

I protected my cameras as best I could and took a set of photos of what turned out to be a powerhouse of a gig.

The man was on fire and kicked off the set with ‘Bat Out of Hell’ and the energy on that stage that night was something I will never forget (little wonder that he always had oxygen standing by side stage).

The set list looked like this: Come in the Night / Let the Revels Begin, Bat Out of Hell, You Took the Words Right Out of My Mouth (Hot Summer Night), Dead Ringer for Love, Read ‘Em and Weep, Wasted Youth, All Revved Up With No Place to Go, I’m Gonna Love Her for Both of Us,Paradise by the Dashboard Light, Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad The Promised Land and Gimme Shelter.

To hear of his passing was so very sad, but he leaves us the legacy of those incredible songs.

One of those incredible songs does have something of a Coventry connection. ‘You Took the Words Right Out of my Mouth’ was covered quite brilliantly by Coventry kid Dave Willetts.

The song was produced by Mike Roberts (former keyboard player and songwriter of Coventry band King with Cov musician Anthony Harty (former Style Council Bass player) on guitars.

It came from the album ‘Timeless’ and was released on Coventry and Warwickshire record label – Big Help Music.

Check it out below –

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