Rock And Roll Dreams Come Through

Album: Bat Out Of Hell II: Back Into Hell (1993)
Charted: 11 13

Songfacts®:

  • This song is about the healing power of music, specifically rock and roll: whenever you're feeling lonely and depressed, you can put on your headphones, turn on the stereo, and it's there for you. It's one of the more grandiloquent songs on the subject, likening music to a "gift of the gods" and the drums to a heartbeat.
  • Jim Steinman wrote this song and released it on his 1981 solo album Bad For Good. Steinman wrote the songs on Meat Loaf's wildly popular 1977 album Bat Out of Hell, and would later write tracks for Bonnie Tyler and Celine Dion.

    This song, and the entire Bad For Good album, was originally slated for Meat Loaf. The tracks were put down using most of the same musicians and studios used on Bat Out of Hell (why mess with success?) but when it came time to record his vocals, Meat Loaf couldn't sing. The problem seemed to be both mental and physical, but it was dastardly, requiring grueling therapy. With the album ready to go sans vocals, Steinman decided to sing on it himself, although on this track he used a Canadian singer named Rory Dodd, who provided backing on Bat Out of Hell and would later do the "turn around, bright eyes" part on "Total Eclipse Of The Heart," as lead vocalist.

    "Rock And Roll Dreams Come Through" was the only hit from the album, reaching #32 in the US. It was also Steinman's only Hot 100 entry as a solo artist.

    When Steinman and Meat Loaf teamed up for the 1993 album Bat Out Of Hell II: Back Into Hell, it was recorded as intended, with Loaf on lead. This rendition was more successful, making #13 US and also charting in the UK at #11.
  • The video was directed by Michael Bay, who did some of Meat Loaf's videos before directing the movies Armageddon, Pearl Harbor and Transformers. Angelina Jolie stars in the video as a young girl who runs away from home.
  • The Jim Steinman version runs 6:25, with a false ending at 5:25 - after fading to silence, the vocals come back over a string section, and the coda continues for another minute.

    The Meat Loaf version runs 5:50 on the album and 5:08 on the radio edit, but contains an extra verse:

    Once upon a time was a backbeat
    Once upon a time all the chords came to life
    And the angels had guitars even before they had wings
    If you hold onto a chorus you can get through the night


    Loaf's version has a more aggressive saxophone solo (played by Lenny Pickett) and more instrumentation, with the piano lower in the mix.
  • Jimmy Iovine, who later took the helm at Interscope Records, produced the Jim Steinman original version of this track. It was the only track on the Bad For Good not produced by Todd Rundgren.
  • The Steinman original peaked at #32 in August 1981, the same month MTV went on the air. There was a video made for the song with Steinman lip-synching amid an interpretive-dancing couple, but the clip didn't make rotation on MTV, possibly because they didn't have it.

Comments: 6

  • Rob from Fredericton, NbTruly a great song that fits more of a pop-opera meets rock genre, if there is such a style of music. Essentially, that is what makes it so unique in comparison to other music. I seen Meat Loaf in concert at Parlee Beach in New Brunswick in 1993 upon the release of this album. Even being a scary looking guy, Meat Loaf created some real rhythmic songs that was very appealling to most.
  • Lefteris from Nea Smyrni, GreeceJim Steinman's original version of the song, features lead vocals by Canadian singer Rory Dodd who is also the backing vocalist on Bonnie Tyler's "Total Eclipse Of The Heart" (...turn around...)
  • Kristopher from Lenoir, NcNo Steinman did indeed right this song. But when Meat's voice went out Steinman wanted to go on with another project and Meat wasn't ready. So Steinman did the album himself. So therefore seeing how Steinman took Meat's songs for his new album he had to write Meat Loaf a new album. He did indeed trade..but not just one song an entire album. Thus Dead Ringer...which is a pretty good album by the way.
  • David from Grimsby, EnglandSorry Steinman wrote the song,Meat loaf did change it and added lyrics for his version but that doesnt make him the writer
  • Nicklas from Copenhagen, Denmarkthe fact ins't actually true. It was Meat Loaf himself who wrote this song. but he traded songs with Jim Steinman. Steinman got Rock and roll dreams, and in return Meat got the Dead Ringer for love. Meat Loaf states this on the dvd from Melbourne.
  • Gaz from NottinghamThe video starred a young Angelina Jolie.
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