Pat Benatar has been an influential force in rock and pop music since the late 1970s. Born Patricia Andrzejewski in Brooklyn (Benatar was the last name of her first husband), she studied voice and opera. She started singing regularly in the New York area during the 1970s. Benatar was discovered in 1977 performing a wild show at a comedy club and signed to the Chrysalis label. Her debut album, In the Heat of the Night, established her as one of rock’s top singers. “Heartbreaker” and “I Need a Lover” were hits from that record while “Hit Me with Your Best Shot,” “Treat Me Right” and “You Better Run” from her second album, Crimes of Passion, made her into a superstar. The 1980s found her having further hits in “Fire & Ice,” “Promises in the Dark,” “Shadows of the Night,” “Love Is a Battlefield,” “We Belong” and “Invincible.” When the hits stopped later in the decade, she recorded True Love, a blues and R&B album with Roomful of Blues that includes B.B. King’s “Paying the Cost to Be the Boss.” Benatar has frequently returned to rock (including on such 1990s albums as Gravity’s Rainbow and Innamorata) and, while she has not had major hits in quite awhile (her earlier albums spawned 19 Top 40 singles), her recordings are solid sellers and she remains a legendary attraction. Pat Benatar is also an occasional actress.
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