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To hell and back: the autobiography

3.96  ·  Rating Details ·  307 Ratings  ·  42 Reviews
"Stories are like legal tender in Texas; the stranger the better. It's not that people in Texas are particularly morbid or anything. It's just that they love stories, and the best stories naturally have some bizarre aspect to them." That's Meat's summation of his home state, and a read of To Hell And Back proves he's a Dallas boy through and through.

It's fantastic to rep

Hardcover, 285 pages
Published 1999 by Virgin
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Nov 15, 2013 John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Though I can't stand Meat Loaf as a human being, I absolutely go nuts over his music (most of it, anyway). TO HELL AND BACK is one of the most consistently entertaining rock memoirs I've ever read. It didn't give me any greater appreciation of Meat as a person (the horrible temper, the drugs, the petulance, the fighting), but it did give me a greater appreciation for him as a musician. It turns out the man paid his dues, whereas I'd always pictured him as something of an overnight sensation. The ...more
Jun 30, 2012 Robert rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biography
This is the way a biography should be done. Almost as if you are sitting down in a one on one situation with the man himself. Meatloaf is a very interesting character. I always enjoyed the almost cinematic approach to the music he and his band was putting out. Little did I know that he was actually quite the stage actor as well. For fans of the music and the man this is a great book and one I would say should not be missed.
Aug 21, 2016 Tina rated it really liked it
A good read into Meat Loafs early life and career. I am quite surprised by what I read actually, as his personality on TV seems very different to how he really is, unlike most celebrities I've read before.
P.S. Winn
Jun 19, 2017 P.S. Winn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting biography. I love listening to this guy sing and who would think he had a voice like that! As with all stars, singers or otherwise, it is amazing to read the back story of life, love and what they went through.
Jan 04, 2017 Mark rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biographies
great read larger than life autobiography

Sep 25, 2016 Mango rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book
Read it in grad school also
Jan 18, 2011 Nikki-ann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: auto-biography
I finally got to see Meat Loaf in concert in December 2010 after years of wanting to see him live. I’d got tickets for a Meat Loaf concert a few of years earlier, but the concert got cancelled just when the doors to the venue should have opened, then the rest of the tour was cancelled. Meat Loaf was ill. I was gutted, but the concert at Birmingham last December was brilliant and well worth the wait. The man really knows how to put on a stage show!

So what has this got to do with the book? It was
Feb 04, 2015 JK rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I'm not usually one for non-fiction, and particularly not celebrity autobiographies. I find them to be generally full of name-dropping, exaggerated anecdotes, and a confused timeline. I picked up this one because I've always been a fan of Meat Loaf, but unfortunately found it to be no exception to the rule.

The book is easy to read, and the writing is nothing miraculous. The chapters are nice and bite-sized, and can stand alone as small tales on their own. The trouble was, I was never sure where
Feb 06, 2014 David rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First off, this is one of the two books I bought when I was in England in 2001. I finally got to it...

Meat Loaf and Aerosmith have gotten me through some tough times in my life. Bat Out of Hell II: Back In to Hell is still the best Meat Loaf album, and was one of the several CDs I had with me over there.

Meat was also in Rocky Horror Picture Show, and was one of the original cast in the play before it became a movie. This book has some neat behind-the-scenes stuff with regards to the play and the
Kenneth Starcher
I've been slowly getting into the music of Meat Loaf since I was in high school. I began with Bat out of Hell II on cassette tape, then went back and listened to the first Bat out of Hell. I was sorely disappointed with Bat out of Hell III, but when I discovered Bad Attitude and a handful of other random songs, my faith was restored. I picked up a copy of Meat Loaf's autobiography for a mere $3.00, and if I had known how much I was going to enjoy it, I would have lovingly paid full price for it. ...more
05/11: Meat Loaf's music is unique, and I love it. Gosh Darn It, I know I shouldn't. It's a guilty pleasure, like junk food. Heard a few of his songs recently and began to wonder what he as up to. His life's story is pretty much what you would expect: adolescent (but surprisingly not raw) and painful. Everything in his world turns on emotion.

His experiences the day Kennedy was shot are intriguing. Conspiracy theories are almost always such baloney, but you have to wonder about the Kennedy assass
lynne naranek
Aug 21, 2008 lynne naranek rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Meat Loaf
Shelves: 2008
I'm not that knowledgeable about Meat Loaf the person, let along Meat Loaf the performer. I just know I love the songs, and that the combination of Meat Loaf vocals with Jim Steinman songs are hair-raisingly awesome.

The first Meat Loaf song I'd ever heard was Two out of Three Ain't Bad, although I didn't know/remember the artist then. It was only when I pledged my co-ed chemistry fraternity, whose "house song" was Paradise by the Dashboard Light, did I get officially introduced. I borrowed the a
Feb 04, 2015 Andrew rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: music, biog-autobiog
Enjoyable enough though in many ways a tame autobiography...I guess if you are writing about yourself (even with help) you are likely to paint yourself in the best possible light....that's not to say Meat Loaf comes across all judgemental to other folks and passes the blame to others which is a tool I see in so many of these books nor is he's just he keeps any transgressions private.
Although he mentions his demons of the past(substance usage) he neither uses this book to overhaul epi
Dec 28, 2010 Victoria rated it liked it
Being a fan of Meat Loaf's I was thrilled to learn about this book. Having seen a movie about his life I was wanting to find out more. The book is an easy read with most chapters being anywhere from half a page to only 3 pages long. The other plus is lots of pictures. So many that in fact the book could qualify as a photography book.

Starting when he was young and concluding right after Bat out Hell 2, Meat Loaf tells his story his way.
I had heard him discuss 2 of his stories on a talk show and n
May 07, 2014 Ian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book’s terrific! It’s a very quick read, the book being a little more than 200 pages, but at the same time it’s an insightful and extraordinary look at the life Meatloaf has had. The chapters are really short. Some only a page! I had to smile when reading this book, because it reads like Meatloaf is sitting across from you, in a pub or coffee shop, telling you these anecdotes. I particularly found the part about the relationship between Meatloaf and Jim Steinman very intriguing. All up, a ...more
Mar 16, 2015 Greg rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I love Meat Loaf's albums, but only recently learned that Meat Loaf lost his voice and had a nervous breakdown (among other things.) So I thought I'd read his autobiography, and it's interesting, but not great. It's written as a series of vignettes from his memories--important scenes from his childhood, life on the road, etc.

It's fine for the broad strokes, but you probably need an impartial biographer to get to the truth of what was really going on. This autobiography feels too incomplete.
Jun 06, 2010 Misha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
To Hell and Back is a good, quick read, and thanks to Meat Loaf's sense of humor, entertaining. It's also interesting music history 101.

Meat Loaf shares how he got dubbed the nickname, wearing fishnets for RHPS, struggling in the music industry, and then some. He also reveals insights into Jim Steinman, the musical genius who wrote many of Meat Loaf's best hits, and the rift that grew between them. It was all pretty fascinating.
Jan 23, 2012 Laura rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library, non-fiction
An autobiography. My obsession with Meat Loaf has reached a peak. A peak.

"One morning in 1974, I answered the phone. 'Hello?' the voice said. 'Meatball?'"

"More people in Canada owned Bat Out of Hell than owned snowshoes."

"If I'd had my way, the hallways of record companies would run with the blood of incompetent executives, promoters would be hanged from lamp posts, and the band would suffer the torments of hell. I AM GOD! YOU ARE FOOLS!"
Jude Arnold
Sep 10, 2012 Jude Arnold rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love Meat Loaf! I loved reading his biography, To Hell and Back. "Rocky Horror Picture Show" is like one of my favorite movies; and "Paradise" is my favorite Rock and Roll song! I thoroughly enjoyed his account of these and more! My favorite page was 91 where he loans his equipment to the Grateful Dead and they play for 4 and 1/2 hours; and The Hog Farm and Wavy Gravy are there! Love you, Meat! I hope they end up making that movie about you!
I absolutely LOVE Meat Loaf's music, but I've never really been that invested in the person. I was right insofar as I just preferred to see the "character" that he admits in this bio he usually puts on as a performer. With this bio though I wanted to change that but found myself disappointed. I had hoped for facts, thoughts, insights and emotions, background. Nada. It's incoherent, uninteresting even, and I feel like I "know " as much as before. I guess it's better to keep it that way then.
Sep 02, 2012 Bill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like rock bios, and I read this one alongside the Motley Crue book. Meat was pretty much a hell-raiser in his day, but at no point did I ever feel the need to wash my hands while reading his book. Can't say the same thing for the Crue book. Meat's reads like a chat over beers. Just a guy telling some stories about his life. Not a classic by any means, but an entertaining beach read.
Jul 09, 2012 Lea rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: a-z
Each chapter stands on its own as an intimate story from Meat Loaf's rise and fall and resurrection in the rock world. If you're looking for lots of lurid tales of sex, drugs and rock and roll and won't find it here. Instead, reading this book is like story time around the kitchen table with a friend who just happens to be a music legend.
Ann York
Mar 20, 2011 Ann York rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really loved reading about meat loaf it was very good and all about his childhood and how is dad ran afte him with a knife and how he got the nickmane meat loaf it is a really good read into his life.
Name dropping all over the place

Held my interest. But then I always was a fan of Meat Loaf. Makes you think that there is always a hell of a lot that goes on behind the scenes. What we see of anyone famous is only a glimpse of the whole story.
Jun 04, 2010 Tryphena rated it liked it
The book was written ok but it sort of skipped around a lot. It was written as a journal type book and I liked that. It was easy to understand but I also had the feeling that he was leaving out a whole lot more. Quick Read
Dec 05, 2016 Mark rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was a great autobiography from one of the great classic rock men. It was great getting a back story to his rise to success in the late 70's to the lows he went through in the 80's and his return in the 90's.
Interesting, easy, and entertaining. Its nice sometimes to use just enough brain power to read and not have to worry about digesting and interpreting a plot.

Mags Duncan
Dec 12, 2012 Mags Duncan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bios
I'm a big Meat Loaf fan and this book did not disappoint.
Jan 25, 2009 Laura rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
was a kick-ass book & the photos were great. I knew nothing about Meat Loaf & I found him to be fascinating!
Jan 13, 2012 Sam rated it it was amazing
Absolutely loved this book. It was like someone talking to you and not like reading a book at all. Read it in one day.
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Michael Lee Aday (born Marvin Lee Aday) is an American musician, singer, songwriter, record producer and actor usually known by his stage name Meat Loaf.
More about Meat Loaf...

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