Born and raised in Dallas, Texas, he began acting in high school productions, and continued while attending college in Denton, Texas. He is reported to have gotten his beefy nick-name when he was in 7th grade and weighed in at 240 pounds (he later weighed in at over 300 lbs). In the late ‘60s, he moved to California, following the death of his mother. Once in Los Angeles, he started a band that changed names as often as personnel (Meat Loaf Soul, Popcorn Blizzard and Floating Circus). Floating Circus had regional success as opening act for a variety of well-known acts including The Who, Van Morrison, Janis Joplin and The Grateful Dead and released a single: "Once Upon a Time" backed with "Hello."
After a brief run as a parking-lot attendant, a friend encouraged him to try out for a new musical, called Hair. He landed the part, which led him to a recording contract at Motown where he was paired with cast-mate Sean “Stoney” Murphy. Together they recorded vocals for an album called “Stoney and Meatloaf.” The LP's single, “What You See is What You Get,” had minor chart success, but led to live gigs, opening shows for the likes of Alice Cooper and Bob Seger (among others.) Aday’s next move was back to the touring company of “Hair,” followed by a stint off- Broadway in the show More Than You Deserve, written by Jim Steinman. The pair would later developed a partnership, and later went on to collaborate on the Bat Out of Hell trilogy of albums, consisting of Bat Out of Hell, Bat Out of Hell II: Back into Hell and Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster is Loose.
A casting call in Los Angeles led the now professionally-named Meat Loaf to the dual role of Eddie and Dr Scott in the Roxy Cast of The Rocky Horror Show. The success of the show led to the filmed version, The Rocky Horror Picture Show where he reprised the role of Eddie, though the part of Dr. Scott was now played by Jonathan Adams, who originated the part of The Narrator in the London Cast. During this period, Meat Loaf and Jim Steinman (who had begun writing material for Bat Out Of Hell in 1972) started shopping their album. Dismissed as not fitting with any conventional format, the album finally was produced when Todd Rundgren took an interest in the music and produced it with members of his band, Utopia, playing on the tracks.
Bat Out Of Hell was released in October of 1977, just as The Rocky Horror Picture Show was becoming an acknowledged cult phenomenon. Four songs from the album were shot at a live performance, and as a personal favor, Lou Adler agreed to include “Paradise By The Dashboard Light” as a trailer to Rocky Horror in many venues. The result was instant pandemonium. The combination of Rocky Horror’s growing popularity coupled with the solid theatrical, melodramatic rock LP catapulted up the charts, eventually selling over 45 million copies world-wide. It remains one of the top-selling albums of all time, and in the UK has remained in the top-200 sellers ever since its release.
Meat Loaf went on to be a rock super-star, recording and releasing a string of hit albums. Additionally, he has appeared in over a dozen films and a variety of television guest spots, notably on the Rocky-related "The Rocky Horror Glee Show" episode of Glee in 2010, and a 1981 appearance on Saturday Night Live with Tim Curry in a sketch called "Tim And Meat's One-Stop Rocky Horror Shop".
- In 1976, Meat Loaf recorded lead vocals for Ted Nugent's album Free-for-All when regular Nugent lead vocalist Derek St. Holmes temporarily quit the band (credited as Meatloaf)
- In 1999, he released To Hell And Back: An Autobiography
- In 2001, Meat Loaf had his name legally changed from Marvin to Michael.
1971 Stoney & Meatloaf
1974 The Rocky Horror Show Original Roxy Cast (Eddie/Dr. Scott)
1975 The Rocky Horror Picture Show Original Soundtrack Album (Eddie)
1977 Bat Out of Hell
1978 Live at Father’s Place
1981 Dead Ringer
1983 Midnight at the Lost and Found
1984 Bad Attitude
1986 Blind Before I Stop
1987 Live At Wembley
1991 Bat Out Of Hell: Re-vamped
1993 Bat Out of Hell II: Back into Hell
1995 Welcome to the Neighborhood
1996 Live Around the World
2003 Couldn't Have Said It Better 2004 Bat Out Of Hell Live with the Melbourne Symphony
2006 Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster is Loose
2008 3 Bats Live
2010 Hang Cool Teddy Bear
2011 Hell in a Handbasket
2016 Braver Than We Are
1971 "What You See Is What You Get”
1971 "It Takes All Kinds of People" (Stoney & Meatloaf)
1977 "You Took the Words Right Out of My Mouth"
1977 "Paradise by the Dashboard Light"
1977 "Two Out of Three Ain't Bad"
1979 "Bat Out of Hell"
1981 "I'm Gonna Love Her for Both of Us"
1981 "Dead Ringer for Love" (with Cher)
1982 "Read 'Em and Weep"
1982 "Peel Out"
1982 "In Europe '82 (4 Track EP)"
1983 "If You Really Want To"
1983 "Razor's Edge"
1983 "Midnight at the Lost and Found"
1983 "Razor's Edge" (Re-Release)
1984 "Modern Girl"
1984 "Nowhere Fast"
1984 "Surf's Up"
1984 "Sailor to a Siren"
1985 "Piece of the Action"
1986 "Rock 'n' Roll Mercenaries" (with John Parr)
1986 "Getting Away with Murder"
1987 "Blind Before I Stop"
1987 "Special Girl"
1987 "A Time for Heroes" (with Brian May)
1987 "Paradise by the Dashboard Light" (with Ellen Foley) [re-release]
1991 "Bat Out of Hell" [re-release]
1991 "Dead Ringer for Love" [re-release]
1992 "Two Out of Three Ain't Bad" (Special Version)
1993 "I'd Do Anything for Love (But I Won't Do That)"
1993 "Life Is a Lemon and I Want My Money Back"
1993 "Bat Out of Hell" [re-release]
1993 "Paradise by the Dashboard Light" (with Ellen Foley) [re-release]
1994 "Rock and Roll Dreams Come Through"
1994 "Objects in the Rear View Mirror May Appear Closer than They Are"
1995 "I'd Lie for You (And That's the Truth)" (with Patti Russo)
1996 "Not a Dry Eye in the House"
1996 "Runnin' for the Red Light (I Gotta Life)"
1998 "A Kiss Is a Terrible Thing to Waste" (featuring Bonnie Tyler)
1999 "Is Nothing Sacred" (with Patti Russo)
2003 "Did I Say That?"
2003 "Couldn't Have Said It Better" (with Patti Russo)
2003 "Man of Steel" (with Pearl Aday)
2006 "It's All Coming Back to Me Now" (with Marion Raven)
2006 "Blind As a Bat"
2006 “Peace On Earth”
2007 "Cry Over Me"
2010 "Los Angeloser"
2010 "If I Can't Have You"
2011 "All of Me"
2011 "Prize Fighter Lover"
Long Form Video
1984 Hits Out of Hell
1985 Bad Attitude – Live!
1993 Bat Out of Hell II: Picture Show
1999 VH1: Storytellers
2004 Bat Out of Hell: Live with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra
2007 3 Bats Live DVD and Blu-ray (UK only)
2009 Bat Out of Hell: The Original Tour
2012 Live in Sydney
1977–1979 Bat Out of Hell Tour
1981 Dead Ringer Tour
1982 Meat Loaf & the NLE Euro Tour '82
1983 Meat Loaf World Tour
1984–1985 Bad Attitude Tour
1987–1988 20/20 Tour
1988–1989 Lost Boys and Golden Girls
1993–1995 Everything Louder Tour
1996 Born to Rock Tour
1999 The Very Best of Tour
1999–2000 Storytellers Tour
2001 Night of the Proms Tour
2002 Just Having Fun Tour
2003–2004 Couldn't Have Said It Better
2005 The Hair of the Dog Tour
2006–2007 The Three Bats Tour
2008 The Casa de Carne Tour
2010–2011 The Hang Cool Tour
2011–2012 The Guilty Pleasure Tour
2012 Mad, Mad World Tour
2013 Last at Bat Tour
2015 Braver Than We Are Tour
1975 The Rocky Horror Picture Show - Eddie
1979 Americathon- Roy Budnitz
1979 Scavenger Hunt - Scum
1980 Roadie - Travis W. Redfish
1981 Dead Ringer - Meat Loaf/Marvin
1986 Out of Bounds - Gil
1986 The Squeeze - Titus
1991 Motorama - Vern
1992 Wayne's World - Tiny
1992 Leap of Faith - Hoover
1993 To Catch a Yeti - Big Jake Grizzly
1997 Spiceworld: The Movie - Dennis
1998 Black Dog - Red
1998 Outside Ozona
1999 Crazy in Alabama - Sherriff John Doggett
1999 Fight Club - Robert “Bob” Paulson
2000 Blacktop - Jack
2001 Trapped (TV Movie) - Jim Hankins
2001 The Ballad of Lucy Whipple - Amos “Rattlesnake Jake” Frogge
2001 Face to Face - Driver
2001 Rustin - Coach Trellingsby
2001 Focus - Fred
2002 The 51st State - The Lizzard
2002 Wishcraft - Detective Sparky Shaw
2002 The Salton Sea - Bo
2004 A Hole In One - Billy
2005 The Pleasure Drivers - Dale
2005 Crazylove - John
2006 Tenacious D in The Pick of Destiny - Jack Black’s Father
2007 History Rocks (Himself)
2008 Meat Loaf: In Search of Paradise (Himself)
2009 Tiger Force Forever: Unleashed
2009 Citizen Jane - Detective Jack Morris
2010 Burning Bright - Howie
2010 Beautiful Boy - Hotel Manager
2011 Absolute Killers - Dan
2013 The Moment - Sgt. Goodman
2014 Stage Fright- Roger McCall
2014 Wishin’ and Hopin’ - Monsignor Muldoon
1978 Saturday Night Live – Host Christoper Lee (Musical Guest)
1981 Saturday Night Live – Host Tim Curry (Musical Guest)
1985 Strike Force
1985 The Equalizer
1992 Tales from the Crypt
1997 Dead Man’s Gun
1997 Nash Bridges
1998 South Park ("Chef Aid")
2000 Outer Limits
2006 Masters of Horror
2007 Dick Clark’s New Years Rockin’ Eve
2007 Private Sessions
2007 Go-Phone Commercial
2008 The F-Word
2009 Hannity (Panel Member)
2009 Don’t Forget The Lyrics
2009 Ghost Hunters
2010 Popstar to Operator
2010 WWE Raw
2010 Glee - "The Rocky Horror Glee Show"
2010 Ghost Hunters
2010 This Week
2011 Celebrity Apprentice
2012 Fairly Legal
1968-1972 Hair (Los Angeles Cast)
1974 More Than You Deserve
1974 As You Like It
1974 The Rocky Horror Show (Los Angeles)
1975 The Rocky Horror Show (New York)
1975 The National Lampoon Show
1976 Rockabye Hamlet