The 2008 Golden Q Award for All-Time Classic Song was awarded to Jim Steinman & Meat Loaf for Bat Out Of Hell.
Q magazine's editor in chief, Paul Rees, says: "There are some songs that transcend such things as time and genre, and Bat Out Of Hell is assuredly one of them." Steinman made the following remarks to Q Magazine regarding the honor:
Steinman says Bat reflects his philosophy.
Bat Out Of Hell‘s writer Jim Steinman said today that the song was “a perfect reflection of my creed”.
The legendary composer – who wrote the song for the album of the same name – said he created the track to be “the ultimate crash song”, “operatic annihilation” and a little piece of "Wagner".
After hearing the track was named Classic Song at today’s Q Awards, he said: “In the interest of being pompous, profound, and pretentious all at the same time, as well as being self-deprecating, even self-lacerating, and brilliant simultaneously, I can truly say that BAT OUT OF HELL is a perfect reflection of my creed: ‘If you don’t go over the top, you’ll never see what’s on the other side”.
“’Bat’ was a complete song after two choruses, at six-plus minutes long. But I thought it was too short - no, incomplete. It needed more! So I toiled away and came up with the final third of the song, starting at: “I can see myself, tearing up the road, FASTER, than any other boy has ever gone……” - and this evolved into the whole CRASH sequence, ending with “the last thing I see is my heart/still beating/still beating/breaking out of my body and flying away …… Like a BAT OUT OF HELL!”
“Then it was complete. It had been a great driving-racing-speed anthem, plus a suitably obsessive love story, but now it was what I wanted all along: THE ULTIMATE CRASH SONG!! SELF-DESTRUCTION! OPERATIC ANNIHILATION!!!!!!
A LOVE DEATH!!!!! LITTLE RICHARD WAGNER!!!!
“Thus, if I hadn't gone OVER THE TOP, I NEVER WOULD HAVE SEEN WHAT’S ON THE OTHER SIDE. Which I really loved. And which, to this f***ing day, I still love. END OF STORY; AND THANK YOU, Q & MEAT. (That sounds like a distant relative of Spotted Dick: Q & MEAT!)”
Q Magazine also published the following 10 SteinFacts…
Bat Out Of Hell a 'classic'
Bat Out Of Hell, Meat Loaf’s enduring rock epic, is to be rewarded with the title of ‘classic song’ at next week’s Q Awards. The track was written by the legendary songwriter Jim Steinman with whom Loaf has collaborated on a number of occasions, although the pair have not always seen eye to eye.
Here are ten things you should know about the architect of Bat Out Of Hell, Jim Steinman:
- 1) Steinman and Meat Loaf’s paths first crossed after the songwriter created a musical called More Than You Deserve in 1974, in which the singer and actor had been cast. The title track was later included on the Dead Ringer album (follow-up to Bat Out Of Hell).
- 2) His first commercial release was in 1973 when Yvonne Elliman recorded Steinman's song Happy Ending which appeared on the album Food of Love.
- 3) Bat Out Of Hell has its roots in a production based on JM Barrie’s Peter Pan. While Steinman and Meat Loaf were working on a touring National Lampoon production, they started to develop further three of the tracks which the composer had prepared for the musical, Neverland, for what they hoped would become a seven-song album. These became Bat out of Hell, Heaven Can Wait and All Revved Up With No Place to Go.
- 4) Steinman’s magic touch transformed Bonnie Tyler from a singer of syrupy – if a little croaky – ballads, to rock chick after producing her album Faster Than The Speed Of Night. He also wrote the title track and number one single Total Eclipse Of The Heart.
- 5) Steinman is canny recycler. The theme he wrote for a 1979 TV show Delta House was later tweaked and included in the hit single Dead Ringer For Love.
- 6) Steinman claims he was originally approached to pen the lyrics for the Lord Lloyd-Webber musical The Phantom Of The Opera but had to turn it down because of his commitments with Tyler. However, the pair later collaborated on the West End show (later transferring briefly to Broadway) Whistle Down The Wind.
- 7) As well as Bat Out Of Hell (a phrase for which Steinman holds the trademark) and Dead Ringer, Steinman went on to work together on Bat Out Of Hell II in 1993, despite years of bad blood. A third Bat album in 2006 saw little collaboration, although it featured seven of the composer’s songs – five of them were covers of previously recorded material, the remaining two adapted from demos of tracks written for musicals.
- 8) Steinman, 61 in November, reinvented the goth pioneers Sisters Of Mercy with his epic productions on This Corrosion and Dominion/Mother Russia from the band’s second album Floodland. He worked with the Sisters’ Andrew Eldritch again when he co-wrote More for the Vision Thing album.
- 9) Further collaborators for New York-born Steinman have included wrestler Hulk Hogan, the Everly Brothers, Celine Dion and The Opera Babes.
- 10) On the Bat Out of Hell album track Paradise By The Dashboard Light, alongside the rather more sober credits for drums, bass and keyboards for the rest of the personnel, Steinman is listed for “lascivious effects”.