Tuesday 12 December 2017

Five minutes with... Meat Loaf

Meatloaf posing for a portrait in New York. Photo: PA
Meatloaf posing for a portrait in New York. Photo: PA

Following the success of albums such as Bat Out Of Hell, Meat Loaf explains why his latest record is his proudest accomplishment yet

Actor and singer Meat Loaf was born in Dallas, Texas, in 1947. His album Bat Out Of Hell has sold more than 43 million copies, and he has starred in cult classics The Rocky Horror Picture Show and Fight Club.

His new album, Hang Cool Teddy Bear, is out now.

Did you have any idea how big Bat out of Hell would be before it was released?

No, that's insane. I don't think anybody knows. That was the first album and nothing like that happens. There was no way to know that kind of thing.

The Bat out of Hell albums would make a great stage musical

As far as I know, Jimmy (Steinman) is working on doing that for 2012 so we'll see what happens.

Do you think part of Bat out of Hell's magic is that it's never been dramatised?

Yeah, the problem with it is it has to become more of an opera. With a song like Bat Out Of Hell, because it goes on for 10 minutes, you have to have a great actor doing it, because something like Anything For Love or any of Jim's stuff is very long and the actor has to understand the line of it; he has to understand how to hold the thread of the theme and hold the thread of the story together. If they don't you can get lost in a heartbeat. It's not like Mamma Mia! where they're short, little pop songs. With that many longs songs and a storyline that people follow, it's a tough road.

What would be your desert island disc?

I'd take Hang Cool Teddy Bear. I've listened to that more than any record I've done. I'm prouder of that record than any record that I've ever done - even Bat (Out Of Hell). I'm not saying it's better than Bat, because you can't ever say anything's better than Bat, but Hang Cool Teddy Bear has so much emotion tied to it.

Tell us about your recent collaboration with an old Rocky Horror Show colleague

I just did an episode of Glee with Barry Bostwick. We play two TV station managers who hated The Rocky Horror Show. I thought that was great. We are supposed to come back so I'll see what happens.

I loved your turn in Fight Club. what are your memories of making that?

Working with David Fincher was one of the highlights of my life and I would give anything to work with him again. I also worked with Dario Argento on a Showtime horror series. Those are probably my two favourite directors.

Finally, would you like to do another series of Popstar to Operastar?

Oh I don't know. That was done for the moment. That was interesting. The thing I asked was, 'What do they win?', and the producer looked at me funny, she stopped for a while and went, 'I don't think they win anything.' I said, 'Then I'll do it.' It was fun. It was a live show and basically what they told me to do before we went on was, 'We want you to be crazy.' I'm an actor, so what they wanted me to do was a lot of crazy improv, so I did. People see me on there they think that's who I am. That's fine. That's not who I am but that's okay.

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