Meat Loaf drove this surprising car to record ‘Paradise By the Dashboard Light’

Meat Loaf drove this surprising car to record 'Paradise By the Dashboard Light'


Meat Loaf probably wasn’t going like a Bat out of Hell when he was recording the album of that name.

(Paul Natkin/Getty Images and Honda)

The late singer revealed to Motor Trend in 2016 that during the making of the classic LP, which included the epic romantic tragedy “Paradise By the Dashboard Light,” he owned a Honda Civic that he drove back and forth from New York City to the recording studio upstate.

The first-generation Honda Civic had a 52 hp engine.

The first-generation Honda Civic had a 52 hp engine.
(Honda)

“They knew who owned them – James Taylor owned one, Carly Simon owned one, I owned one,” said. “There was only 18 of them in the country when I bought mine. And we were using it to drive back and forth to Woodstock, [producer] Jim Steinman and I, to do ‘Bat Out of Hell.’ We had just started recording it.”

The economy car was powered by a 52 hp engine and required about 15 seconds to accelerate to 60 mph and doesn’t offer much room for the sort of activity depicted in the “Paradise” lyrics.

The Civic's dashboard was a simple affair.

The Civic’s dashboard was a simple affair.
(Honda)

It wasn’t the first car he ever bought. That was a 1967 Ford Mustang, but he said he sold it because it was too annoying to park in New York City.

In more recent years he mostly owned Mercedes-Benz cars and a couple of motorcycles, but he didn’t ride them, despite having performed the most famous biker song of all time, “Bat Out of Hell.”

Meat Loaf was often photographed on motorcycles due to his association with them through "Bat Out of Hell."

Meat Loaf was often photographed on motorcycles due to his association with them through “Bat Out of Hell.”
(Lynn Goldsmith/Corbis/VCG via Getty Images)

According to Motorbike Rider, he had a Harley-Davidson Road King and Triumph Bonneville in the garage, but he just liked to spend hours looking at them and sitting on them.

“It makes me feel like I’m out and I’m flying like a bird,” he said.

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Musical note: The motorcycle sound heard on “Bat out of Hell” wasn’t from a motorcycle, but was created on guitar by Todd Rundgren, as explained by him, Steinman and Meat Loaf in a documentary about the album.

Meat Loaf, whose real name was Marvin Lee Aday, died of undisclosed causes surrounded by family on Jan. 20 at age 74.



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