Jim Steinman, hitmaker for Meat Loaf and Celine Dion, dies

Entertainment
Jim Steinman

FILE – Inductee Jim Steinman speaks at the 2012 Songwriters Hall of Fame induction and awards gala in New York on June 14, 2012. Steinman, the Grammy-winning composer and playwright who wrote Meat Loaf’s best-selling “Bat Out Of Hell” debut album as well as hits for Celine Dion, Air Supply and Bonnie Tyler, has died, at 73. Bill Steinman told The Associated Press that his brother died Monday from kidney failure and was ill for some time. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — Jim Steinman, the Grammy-winning composer who wrote Meat Loaf’s best-selling “Bat Out Of Hell” debut album as well as hits for Celine Dion, Air Supply and Bonnie Tyler, has died, his brother said. He was 73.

Bill Steinman told The Associated Press that his brother died Monday from kidney failure and was ill for some time. He said Jim Steinman died in Connecticut near his home in Ridgefield.

“I miss him a great deal already,” Bill Steinman said by phone Tuesday.

Jim Steinman was born on Nov. 1, 1947, in New York City. He got his start in musical theater and was known for writing and producing epic, operatic rock songs and power ballads throughout his prolific career.

Steinman was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2012 and won album of the year at the 1997 Grammy Awards for producing songs on Celine Dion’s “Falling Into You,” which celebrated its 25th anniversary last month and featured the Steinman-penned power ballad “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now.”

He wrote the music for Meat Loaf’s classic album “Bat Out of Hell,” released in 1977 and one of the top-selling albums of all-time. It has reached 14-time platinum status by the RIAA, which is equivalent to selling 14 million albums in the U.S. alone.

Steinman also wrote Meat Loaf’s 1993 album, “Bat Out of Hell II: Back into Hell,” another commercial and multi-platinum success that featured the international hit “I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That).” He also worked on 2006’s “Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose,” which closed the “Bat Out of Hell” trilogy.

He also composed the rock musical “Bat Out of Hell: The Musical,” which premiered in 2017 at the Manchester Opera House in Manchester, England.

Steinman was responsible for Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart,” which topped the Billboard charts in 1983 and earned Tyler a Grammy nomination. When Tyler’s song was No. 1, another Steinman production — Air Supply’s “Making Love Out of Nothing at All” — peaked at No. 2, giving Steinman the Top 2 spots on the chart.

“There is no other songwriter ever like him,” an emotional and teary-eyed Meat Loaf said at Steinman’s induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. “Here I go getting emotional…

“I can never repay him,” he continued. “He has been such an influence, in fact, the biggest influence on my life, and I learned so much from him that there would be no way I could ever repay Mr. Jim Steinman.”

Meat Loaf and Steinman joined forces again for Meat Loaf’s most recent album, 2016’s “Braver Than We Are.” The songs were written over a 50-year period, and include several originally intended for “Bat Out of Hell.”

Steinman’s only album was 1981’s “Bad for Good,” which featured “Rock and Roll Dreams Come Through,“ a Top 40 hit that Meat Loaf later recorded with more success on the charts. “Bad for Good” also included the track “Left In the Dark,” which Barbra Streisand recorded for her 1984 “Emotion” album. Meat Loaf also recorded the song.

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