Dramatic songwriter Jim Steinman passed away on April 19 at the age of 73. Steinman wrote Meat Loaf’s Bat Out of Hell, the seven song 1977 debut album for Steve Popovich’s Cleveland International Records. While FM rock radio played the title tune, “Paradise By the Dashboard Light” and “You Took the Words Right Out of My Mouth,” AM radio settled on the big ballad, “Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad,” which reached No. 11 in 1978, and became a gold single, with another ballad from the album, “For Crying Out Loud,” on its flip side.
Flip side: For Crying Out Loud
A side: Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad
Top 100 debut: March 18, 1978
Peak position: No. 11
Cleveland International Records/Epic 50513
In 1981, Jim Steinman returned to the Top 40 with his own “Rock and Roll Dreams Come Through,” from his sole Cleveland International album Bad for Good, with Rory Dodd on vocals. In 1983, three of Steinman’s compositions became Top 40 hit singles, the No. 1 platinum single “Total Eclipse of the Heart,” by Bonnie Tyler, the No. 2 gold single “Making Love Out of Nothing at All” by Air Supply, and “Read ‘Em and Weep” by Barry Manilow.
In the mid-1990s, propelled by FM radio creating a classic rock format, Meat Loaf’s Bat Out of Hell had a major resurgence, which led to new albums and Top 40 singles from Meat Loaf and Steinman, including the No. 1 platinum single “I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That),” Meat Loaf’s version of “Rock and Roll Dreams Come Through,” and “Objects in the Rear View Mirror May Appear Closer Than They Are.” During that mid-1990s era, Steinman also wrote the Top 40 platinum single “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now” for Celine Dion.
In 2006, thirteen years after Meat’s Loaf’s successful Bat Out of Hell II: Back Into Hell album, Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster is Loose was released, with seven Steinman compositions including Meat Loaf’s version of “Bad For Good” with Queen’s Brian May on guitar. In 2016, Meat Loaf released his final album of Jim Steinman compositions called Braver Than We Are. In his interview with Goldmine, Meat Loaf said, “Jim wrote the album as a script and overall, as a musical. He feels the album is visionary, operatic and theatrical.”
Jim Steinman, the Grammy winning composer, passed away near his home in Connecticut after being ill for some time.