Behind the Band Name: Meat Loaf

There is an air of mystery surrounding Meat Loaf. His operatic vocals and commanding arias imply a heavenly mythos. However, when the smoke from explosive theatrics and powder keg compositions clears, a mere mortal is revealed, bursting with sweaty, sexual energy from the buttons of his ruffle tuxedo top.

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Mortal or myth, Meat Loaf was a legend, but how does any legend get its name?

There are so many origin stories as the how Meat Loaf became Meat Loaf. The artist hated being asked the same questions about his name over the years, so he started to make things up.

Several tales had to do with his larger size early on in adolescence, or they came from a childhood dare in which he was run over by a car. However, he finally set the record straight about his name on Oprah Winfrey’s Where Are They Now series in 2016. Maybe…

Born Marvin Lee Aday, the singer took on his would-be stage name before a stage was even in sight. “I got it when I was four days old ― not the ‘Loaf’ part, just the ‘Meat,’” he said, detailing how his father was the man behind the moniker.

“I was born bright red, so the doctor suggested that they should keep me in the hospital for a few days.” His father apparently told the hospital to put a name tag that read “Meat” on the front of his hospital crib because he “looked like nine-and-a-half pounds of ground chuck” as a newborn.

And the hospital staff did. “They stuck that printed card that said ‘Meat,’ and that was it,” Meat Loaf added.

As for the “Loaf” part of his stage name, that came a few years later around the eighth grade. “I stepped on a coach’s foot and he screamed, ‘Get off my foot, you hunk of meatloaf!’” he explained.

Watch Meat Loaf tell the tale on Oprah’s Where Are They Now, below.

Photo by Jim Steinfeldt/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

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