Meat Loaf: Singer’s off-on friendship with the Trumps as ex-president insists ‘we loved him’

Meat Loaf was a contestant on ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ in 2011

Clémence Michallon
New York City
Friday 21 January 2022 17:29
<p>Star Jones, Donald Trump Jr, Donald Trump, Marlee Matlin, Jim Cramer, John Rich, and Meat Loaf attend a ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ event on 26 April 2011 in New York City</p>

Star Jones, Donald Trump Jr, Donald Trump, Marlee Matlin, Jim Cramer, John Rich, and Meat Loaf attend a ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ event on 26 April 2011 in New York City

Meat Loaf had an on and off friendship with the Trump family, which started making headlines in the 2010s when the singer became a contestant on Celebrity Apprentice.

The singer died on Thursday night (20 January) at the age of 74. Fans and figures across the entertainment industry have shared tributes honouring his work and legacy.

Meat Loaf, whose real name was Michael Lee Aday, is best remembered for hits such as “I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That)” and “Two Out Of Three Ain't Bad”.

In 2011, Meat Loaf was a contestant on the fourth season of Celebrity Apprentice. The cast also included La Toya Jackson, Dionne Warwick, Lisa Rinna, and John Rich.

While on the show, he and Donald Trump, who hosted the reality programme, became “good friends”, Meat Loaf told Express in 2020 – but their friendship soured after Meat Loaf suggested in an interview that Trump shouldn’t run for president of the US.

The singer recounted being asked in an interview whether he thought Trump would make a good president.

“And I answered honestly – ‘Well he’s not running for President,’” Meat Loaf said. “But if I was president I would see if I couldn’t get him to join the staff in a finance position [...].”

Trump, he said, got “really mad” at him after they both attended an Emmys nominations ceremony.

“He came in and said, ‘What, you don’t think I would make a good President?’ He was really mad – his face so angry – and I said, ‘You are not running for President?’ and he said, ‘But you said you thought I shouldn’t..’ and, ‘I said no I said I think you’d be great at the finance side,’” Meat Loaf added.

Meat Loaf said he was “really not afraid of [Trump]” and eventually told him: “You’re not running for President, back off, man!”

On Friday, Trump called Meat Loaf a “great guy” in a statement shared on Twitter by his spokeswoman Liz Harrington. Trump couldn’t tweet the statement directly because he was banned from the social media platform permanently on 8 January 2021 after supporters of his stormed the Capitol in a deadly insurrection.

“Meat Loaf was a great guy – got to know him very well doing Celebrity Apprentice. He was smart, talented, open, and warm,” the statement reads.

“His success was enormous – we all loved him. Meat Loaf will be greatly missed!”

In January 2021, Ivanka Trump accidentally tagged Meat Loaf instead of Donald Trump in a photo of herself and her father flying to Georgia during the run-off election.

Meat Loaf’s Twitter handle is @RealMeatLoaf, while Trump’s was realDonaldTrump before his account was suspended.

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