36 Days of Adrenaline: Day 5 — “Holding Out for a Hero”

Artist: Bonnie Tyler

Why this song is an adrenaline rush: I loves me some Jim Steinman. Who’s Jim Steinman, you ask? He’s the songwriter-producer behind the seminal Meat Loaf album, Bat Out of Hell, as well as such hits by other artists as Air Supply’s “Making Love Out of Nothing at All,” Celine Dion’s “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now,” and “Total Eclipse of the Heart,” Bonnie Tyler’s other major single besides this one. Steinman’s drama-laden, overblown, hyperorchestrated style — his music is often referred to as “Wagnerian” — strikes a chord deep within me.

Lyric line that’s fun to belt at maximum volume:

I need a hero
I’m holding out for a hero ’til the end of the night
He’s gotta be strong
And he’s gotta be fast
And he’s gotta be fresh from the fight
I need a hero
I’m holding out for a hero ’til the morning light
He’s gotta be sure
And it’s gotta be soon
And he’s gotta be larger than life
Larger than life…

Fun factoids:

  • “Holding Out for a Hero” first appeared on the soundtrack for the film Footloose. This means that Jim Steinman has a Bacon number of 1.
  • The song has subsequently graced the soundtracks of numerous other films, including Shrek 2 and Nacho Libre.
  • Steinman turned down the opportunity to cowrite the songs for the musical Phantom of the Opera. I’ll bet he’s kicked himself a time or two over the years for that career move.
  • When Meat Loaf thrashed his voice on the Bat Out of Hell tour in the late 1970s, he was unable to record the songs Steinman had composed for the follow-up album, which would have been called — predictably enough — Bat Out of Hell 2. Steinman recorded the album himself, now retitled Bad for Good, using his own lead vocals. This album proved one immutable truth: Jim Steinman cannot sing.

Other songs written and produced by Jim Steinman that I could have chosen instead: “Bat Out of Hell” or “All Revved Up With No Place to Go” by Meat Loaf; “Tonight is What It Means to Be Young” by Fire Inc. (from the soundtrack of the film Streets of Fire).

[Late to the party? Here’s an explanation of 36 Days of Adrenaline.]

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Explore posts in the same categories: 36 Days of Adrenaline, Soundtrack of My Life, SwanStuff, That's Cool!

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