I have a fairly eclectic music collection, and sometimes “eclectic” can mean “downright embarrassing.” Here is the logic behind some of the more questionable songs (usually pop ballads): songs get in my head, and flat-out will not leave until I give them a good listen. That usually does the trick, but I rarely – if ever – delete music from my iTunes, and that leaves some perplexing entries when people browse through later on. “Is this seriously a Eurobeat football-chant song from the World Cup in the early 90’s?” Yes, yes it is. Please move along.
Pop songs are pop hits because they have a good hook, and I have a deep admiration for a good hook – they’re hard to write, and harder to pull off. Sometimes they’re obnoxious, sometimes deliciously complicated, but they always do the trick: you wind up humming the thing for days, weeks, years after the fact, and the tiniest aural hint can trigger a return, surfacing like a bubblegum submarine from the depths of the subconscious.
Last night, Meat Loaf’s 1993 #1 hit “I Would Do Anything For Love… But I Won’t Do That” ahoogah’d its way to my forebrain. I remembered seeing the video on VH1 and MTV in late elementary school, and then as a Pop-Up Video in junior high school. Determined not to add this song to my already outlandish music library, I pulled up YouTube and got my listening fix via watching the video, which I vaguely recalled having a “Beauty and the Beast” theme.
… though I didn’t recall “Beauty and the Beast” having motorcycle chases. Or cops being killed by crystal chandeliers. Or the eponymous Beauty splashing around in a bathtub and retreating to a heavily-blanketed bed to have an orgy with some kind of vampiric brides. Or the line “Will you hose me down with holy water if I get too hot?”.
Regardless, my mind still went back to the questions of “What won’t Meat Loaf do for love? What is the ‘that’ in the title?” With a song coming from the same guy who sang “I can see paradise by the dashboard light”, my mind drifted to some fairly bizarre acts. Sadly, it turns out that Meat Loaf says exactly what he won’t do for love in the song, just a few lines previous to the title line.
Things Meat Loaf WILL NOT Do For Love
- Forget the way you feel right now.
- Forgive himself if you and he don’t go all the way tonight.
- Do it better than he’ll do it with you. (For so long!)
- Stop dreaming of you every night of his life.
- Forget everything and move on.
- Sooner or later be screwing around.
Though I’m pretty confused about how a guy would consider cheating and screwing around something he would do for love, I guess it takes all kinds. Also, if the above list didn’t convince you that Meat Loaf is totally your ideal guy (he also prays to the gods of sex, drums, and rock n’ roll), check out the following list:
Things Meat Loaf WILL Do For Love
- Run right into hell and back.
- Never lie to you. (that’s a fact!)
- Be there until the final act.
- Take a vow.
- Seal a pact.
- Raise you up AND help you down.
- Get you out of your godforsaken town.
- Make it all a little less cold. (ed. note: That would be great for me – my house has no insulation.)
- Hold you sacred and tight.
- Colorize your life. (ed.: Interpret that however you want.)
- Make some magic with his own two hands (e.g. building a replica of a “Wizard of Oz” set with some sand… Meat Loaf is into beach sculpture competitions?)
- The above-mentioned holy water stuff, and other kinky allusions.
… and the list goes on. I briefly thought of downloading the song and posting a link here so you, Gentle Reader, could have it for your own, but getting busted by the feds for illegal file sharing over a Meat Loaf song? Hell, I won’t do that.