H.E.A.R. Honors Pat Benatar
Benatar is a certified rock 'n' roll superstar, a four-time
Grammy winner with six platinum and four gold albums to her
credit as well as such hit singles as "I Need A Lover,"
"Heartbreaker," "Fire and Ice," "Treat
me Right," "Hit Me With Your Best Shot," "Hell
Is For Children," "Shadows of The night," and
"Love Is A Battlefield."
After capturing industry ears with her showcases at New York's Catch A Rising Star, Benatar signed to Chrysalis Records and released the million-selling In The Heat Of The Night in 1979, followed by the multi-platinum Crimes of Passion a year later. From 1980 -'83, she captured an unprecedented four straight Grammy's in the category "Best Rock Vocal Performance-Female" for the Top Five album Crimes of Passion ('80) and the hit singles "Fire and Ice" ('81), "Shadows of the Night" ('82), and "Love Is A Battlefield" ('83). With the latter, she broke out as one of the leading stars of the emerging music video scene with a Bob Giraldi directed clip that proved to be an MTV mainstay.
She followed with the most successful album of her career, Precious Time ('81), which topped the U. S. charts. Her platinum records include Get Nervous ('82), Live From Earth ('83), and Tropico ('84) which featured "Invincible," the theme from the hit movie Legend of Billy Jean. These were succeeded by her gold albums: Seven The Hard Way ('84), Wide Awake In Dreamland ('88), Best Shots ('89) and True Love ('91), her critically-acclaimed blues album which had her covering B.B. King's "Payin' The Cost To Be The Boss." The record was a labor of love for Benatar and husband/producer/long-time collaborator Neil Giraldo and proved the rock vocalist was equally adept at belting out the blues.
In addition, Benatar has been an active participant in numerous charity and fund-raising events -- including Artists United Against Apartheid in 1985. She recorded a version of "Please Come Home For christmas" in 1990 especially for the Desert Storm coalition troops who served in the Middle East during the Gulf War. Benatar and Giraldo have been a working couple since Giraldo penned the song, "We live For Love" from her debut album In The Heat Of The Night. He has continued to wear many different hats, including producer, guitarist and songwriter, as well as soulmate.
"Musically, we're still in touch with each other. We like to play together," says Benatar. "It's who's cooking dinner tonight that's the problem." In 1985, Benatar and Giraldo became the proud parents of a baby girl, Haley, but Benatar continued to record and tour right up until '93, when she was forced to come off the road after the release of Gravity's Rainbow to give birth to her second daughter, Hana. Benatar began to concentrate on her writing, which led to more than two dozen new songs. Around the same time, she decided to leave the only label she'd ever recorded for, Chrysalis. Finding herself free of any ties fueled her creative instincts, "It's like starting over," she admits. "It's pretty liberating, though. Like getting another chance."
Pat's tour in the summer of '95 with REO Speedwagon and Fleetwood Mac ("Can't Stop Rockin' Tour") proved to the masses once again that she still remains one of rock's premiere female vocalists.During the stint, Pat received such accolades as: "She's still got one of the hardest hitting voices in mainstream rock 'n' roll" (Pittsburgh Post Gazette) and "Benatar proved it right off. It was her voice and stage presence that made her the queen of rock 'n' roll before Madonna and Melissa Etheridge came along" (Reno Gazette-Journal).
Such high praise made Benatar even more motivated to hit the road again with the Steve Miller Band. The rave reviews continued: The Austin American Statesman stated, "Benatar's show served notice she's perfectly poised for a return to big-time musical fame and glory," while the Albany Times Union raved that, "The new songs were well-received, giving some early indications that the upcoming album, Innamorata, would be eagerly snapped up by Benatar fans.
With Giraldo on guitar, Pat's touring band features bassist Mick Mahan, drummer Ray Brinker,and keyboardist Allison Cornell. Benatar and Giraldo have been fully devoted to recording songs for Innamorata since the "Can't Stop Rockin' Tour" in 1995.
1996 Pat released Heartbreaker: 16 Classic Performances. 1997 Pat released her latest LP, Innamorata and made some appearances with the Lilith Fair tour. 1998 "8-15-80" was released - a live recording of Pat's hits recorded in California and New York in 1979 and 1980. 1999 Pat ranked # 39 on the VH1: 100 Greatest Women of Rock & Roll. A 3-CD box set was released: Synchronistic Wanderings: Recorded Anthology 1979-1999. The set includes all of Pat's hits, soundtrack and compilation tracks, as well as some live tracks and demos. 2000 VH1: 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock includes Pat at # 74. 2001 VH1: 100 Greatest Videos includes: # 73 - "Love Is A Battlefield." Best Shots was certified platinum. 2002 Pat ranked # 66 on VH1: 100 Sexiest Artists.
2003 Pat performed on VH1's Divas Duets 2003. VH1: 100 Best Songs of the Past 25 Years includes "Hit Me With Your Best Shot" at # 89. Pat released Go.
Pat Benatar is the national spokesperson for the Energizer
"It's Hip to H.E.A.R." program, a national
cause-related initiative designed to educate people about
the importance of hearing health awareness, prevention and
treatment. The program, which kicks-off in May during Better
Hearing & Speech Month 2004 , is being executed in partnership
with Hearing Education and Awareness for Rockers (H.E.A.R.)
and Energizer EZ Change, the world's first hearing aid battery