|Real name||Petrus Thomas Ratajczyk|
|Alternative names||Pete Steele, Lord Petrus Steele|
|Nickname||The Green Man|
|Born||January 4, 1962 in|
Brooklyn, New York
|Died||April 14, 2010 (aged 48) in|
|Buried||St. Charles/Resurrection Cemeteries, East Farmingdale, New York|
|Height||6'7.6" (202 cm)|
|Weight||277 lb (126 kg)|
|Occupations||Musician, singer-songwriter, bassist|
|Instruments||Vocals, bass, guitar, keyboards|
Type O Negative (1989–2010)
|Genres||Gothic metal, doom metal, crossover thrash, thrash metal, heavy metal|
|Labels||Roadrunner Records, SPV America|
Petrus Thomas Ratajczyk (January 4, 1962 – April 14, 2010) known professionally as Peter Steele, was the vocalist, bassist and songwriter for Type O Negative. He was born in Red Hook neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York. Steele is also known as The Green Man because when he worked for the Parks Department, he wore a green uniform and rode a green garbage truck, people called him that as well as Type O fans. Green was also his favorite color and is the reason for the theme color of the band.
Steele was known for his vampiric affect, towering stature (heighing at 6' 8"), rich bass-baritone vocals and a dark, often self-deprecating sense of humor. His lyrics were often intensely personal, dealing with subjects including love, heartbreak, death and addiction. Steele credited Black Sabbath and The Beatles as his key musical influences.
Career with Type O Negative
Their debut album, Slow, Deep and Hard, came out in 1991 and wrote lyrics about the heartbreak based from his breaking up of a relationship, fantasies of revenge, and the contemplation of suicide that Steele had attempted: "On October 15th, 1989, I slashed my wrists. All I can say is that I fell in love with the wrong person." A year after releasing the debut album, The Origin of the Feces, which some say is a studio album while others say it's a faux-live album, was released, which the original album cover featured a close-up shot of Steele's anus.
The next year, Type O's landmark album, Bloody Kisses, was released. The album focused primarily on romance, love, sex, and death. In 1996 Type O released October Rust, which features more multi-layered and melodic sound than its predecessor, though it retained similar lyrical themes. One of its tracks, "Green Man", is an ode to his nickname.
Steele had been dealing with personal problems such as addictions and deaths of loved ones during the recording and mixing of 1999's stripped-down and heavier sounding World Coming Down. As a result, the album was heavily influenced by the mournful deaths of loved ones, such as "Everyone I Love Is Dead" and "Everything Dies", as well as about drug abuse and addiction, particularly on the song "White Slavery". Steele also recounts his experience with psychiatric treatment on the song "Who Will Save the Sane?". On "Pyretta Blaze" Steele tells of his sexual fantasy involving fire.
Their sixth album, Life Is Killing Me, was released in 2003. The album features two songs about his deceased parents—"Nettie" about his mother Nettie and "Todd's Ship Gods (Above All Things)" is about his father, referencing the Todd’s Ship Yards in NY where his father was employed. Another track, "How Could She?", lists all of his favorite female television characters.
Their final Type O Negative album, Dead Again, was released in 2007. The title track is about abusing his drugs so much that Steele had a sense of having killed part of himself after suffering a relapse.
Main article: Death of Peter Steele
Peter Steele was enjoying his healthy life free of drugs and alcohol at his home in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and was looking forward to making another Type O Negative record. However on April 14, 2010, Peter Steele died reportedly of a heart failure at the age of just 48. Further autopsy revealed that he died from aortic aneurysm, which is abnormal enlargement of aorta in his heart. But a 2018 alleged file report admitted that he died from diverticulitis that went untreated.
Prior to his death, Steele was preparing to write and record a new Type O Negative album. In November 2010, the remaining members of Type O Negative decided to dissolve the band rather than looking for somebody to replace Steele, with Johnny Kelly stating "Even if there is somebody who could take his place it wouldn't matter. We don't have any interest in continuing. It's impossible – it hasn't even come up in any kind of discussion. When Peter died, Type O Negative died with him."