Las Vegas Sun

October 21, 2017

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Meat Loaf promises ‘Rocktellz & Cocktails’ will be ‘unlike anything else I’ve ever done’


Mark Weiss

Meat Loaf.

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Meat Loaf and Lyssa Lynne during rehearsals for "Rocktellz & Cocktails" at Planet Hollywood.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show

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Meat Loaf and Lyssa Lynne during rehearsals for "Rocktellz & Cocktails" at Planet Hollywood.

Meat Loaf at The Joint

Meat Loaf at The Joint in the Hard Rock Hotel on Aug. 20, 2010. Launch slideshow »

Rock superstar Meat Loaf promises a hard-hitting rock show with a live band when he kicks off his Planet Hollywood residency Sept. 26 — the day before he celebrates his 66th birthday.

Meat Loaf’s enthusiasm for "Rocktellz & Cocktails" has sparked considerable interest with other musicians, singers and entertainers — I’ve exclusively learned that there’s an extraordinary and interesting lineup of major stars who have never played Las Vegas before waiting in the wings to follow his debut.

I know the identities, but in fairness to Meat Loaf, I won’t reveal those until his six-week residency is under way.

As rehearsals kicked off last week, just hours after he arrived in Las Vegas, the rocker — aka Marvin Lee Aday — told Vegas DeLuxe, “Every night will be different. The show will go wherever the audience takes it. I’m not afraid to answer any question that gets asked.

“Even though we have the unrehearsed, unscripted, unexpected, unplanned audience interaction, we will also include all of the hits. We have a killer live band complete with special effects and video screens. It will be a hard-hitting rock show — with the crowd able to enjoy cocktails and get up close and pretty intimate with us.

“I’m thrilled to finally be in Vegas. ‘Rocktellz & Cocktails’ isn’t going to be just another show. It’s a true, kick-ass rock show and unlike anything else I’ve ever done in my career. Fans are going to walk out of the show and be amazed.

“You’re going to hear all the highs and all the lows. I won’t hold back on anything. It’s the good and the bad and the ugly.”

We’ve learned a couple of secret surprises he has in store for the new show. Meat Loaf has filmed a video that will be part “Paradise by the Dashboard Light.” Singer-dancer Lyssa Lynns plays his girlfriend in the segment wearing a sexy cheerleader’s outfit while Meat is in a red-and-black jacket with an “M” emblazoned on it.

They play high school lovers, and their lyrics debate how the relationship gets taken to another level — if it does. "Does he love her?" asks the singer. One unexpected surprise takes place at the end of the video, but Meat wants that kept secret until opening night!

We also have to wait to see if he dares to wear the white tights he donned as a 300-pound Shakespeare enthusiast in "Hair." He admits that he’s been looking for the wardrobe.

This really will be a once-in-a-lifetime, emotional roller-coaster journey through his 47-year career in music, onstage and in film. Audiences will be permitted drinks, so dancing in the aisles will be on tap when he performs his biggest hits: “I Would Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That),” plus “Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad” and “Paradise by the Dashboard Light” from his 1977 classic "Bat Out Of Hell" — the third bestselling album of all time.

In rehearsals for the Q+A portions, Meat Loaf told stories of his characters in “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” and “Fight Club” — and joked, “I’m always getting killed in movies.” In our exclusive first interview about the new show, he admitted that he cheated death several times from drug addiction, a car crash, a suicide attempt and broken legs when he jumped offstage.

“I’m the cat with nine lives who has used eight of them,” Meat Loaf told me.

During rehearsals, he had the stage crew cracking up with his humor and stories. It's not easy for any artist to perform at their maximum in an empty theater without an audience reaction, but the privileged few at rehearsal were amazed with his energy.

“I can't wait to see the faces of the people who come to this show," producer Adam Steck said. "It's going to literally rock their world. It’s going to be a show unlike any other.

"In addition to being the hard-hitting, rock spectacle, ‘Rocktellz & Cocktails’ is going to offer a look into the life and career of a musical icon such as Meat Loaf.”

He also confirmed that the "Rocktellz" series will continue after the Meat Loaf run ends Nov 5.

"Meat’s involvement and the concept has already attracted a long list of music icons, from all genres, who have expressed interest in taking over the ‘Rocktellz & Cocktails’ stage to perform and tell their stories," Steck said. "I’m overwhelmed by the big names and their genuine desire to tell all.”

"Rocktellz" will be every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday in Planet Hollywood Showroom. It will be followed nightly by the new ABBA/"Mamma Mia" tribute from British producer David King. We’ll have the first look at rehearsals for that show in the next few weeks. "Peepshow" with Coco Austin, star of "Ice Loves Coco," ends its run Sunday night.

Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.

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