Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Dead Ringer

In the year after the mega success of Meat Loaf's debut album, Bat Out of Hell, the meatster totally lost his voice due to a combination of touring, drugs and exhaustion. That was 1978. That same year songwriter Jim Steinman started to work on Bad for Good, the album that was supposed to be the follow-up to 1977's Bat out of Hell. Without a singer, and pressured by the record company, Steinman decided that he should sing on Bad for Good himself. Meanwhile, after playing the role of Travis Redfish in the movie Roadie (which had cameos by Debbie Harry, Roy Orbison and Hank Williams, Jr.), Meat Loaf got his voice back, got off drugs, played softball, and started to work on his new album in 1980. Steinman wrote and arranged all of the songs, which eventually became Dead Ringer. The album was produced by Meat Loaf and Stephan Galfas, with backing tracks produced by Jimmy Iovine and Jim Steinman. So in essence, Dead Ringer was the real "Bat Out of Hell II. The title track features a perfectly cast Cher as duet singer with the Meat. Although not nearly as successful as Bat, I find this follow up extremely satisfying and consider the song Read em and Weep simply brilliant.  Yet that song nor the album barely found an audience which is a real head scratcher to me.  Two years later Barry Manilow would release Read em and Weep as a single that went to #18 on the charts.  Then again Steinman has a real knack of writing songs that are 7 minutes or more long and this album was no exception. 

More Than You Deserve
Read Em and Weep
Buy It

Funny Toon


Rock said...

Wow, I'm speechless...nonetheless, thanks for posting this!

Rock The Jukebox