Jim Steinman, Legendary Rock Songwriter, Dead at 73

L-R: Jim Steinman and Meat Loaf
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Michael Putland/Getty Images

Jim Steinman, the songwriter who channeled the rawest of teenage emotions into some of the most baroque rock and roll of the '70s, '80s and beyond, has died after a "sudden medical emergency," according to Connecticut medical examiners. He was 73 years old.

Born in New York City, Steinman's theatrical ambitions coalesced into experimental musicals in the '60s and '70s from which he drew some of his most notable material. In 1977, he adapted a futuristic rock musical named Neverland into Bat Out of Hell, the debut album by the singer Meat Loaf. Produced by Todd Rundgren and featuring backing from members of Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band, the album sold more than 14 million copies in America and spun off the Top 40 hits "Two Out of Three Ain't Bad," "Paradise by the Dashboard Light" and "You Took the Words Right Out of My Mouth (Hot Summer Night)."

An intended Bat Out of Hell follow-up was released by Steinman himself as Bad for Good in 1981; that same year, Meat's Dead Ringer was released featuring another set of songs by the songwriter. In the '80s, Steinman wrote hits like Air Supply's "Making Love Out of Nothing At All" and wrote and produced Bonnie Tyler's epic "Total Eclipse of the Heart," a U.S. and U.K. No. 1 in 1983.

In 1993, another reunion with Meat Loaf produced Bat Out of Hell II: Back Into Hell, featuring the chart-topper "I'd Do Anything for Love (But I Won't Do That)." A repurposed song from an obscure musical project called Pandora's box was given to Celine Dion in 1995, who scored a Top 5 hit with "It's All Coming Back to Me Now." Meat Loaf used several Steinman song's on 2006's Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster is Loose, and Steinman's songbook was plumbed for a 2017 musical that went on to tour internationally.

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