Pat Benatar was born on January 10, 1953, in Brooklyn, New York. After high school, she married her boyfriend and moved to Virginia. Unhappy with domestic life, the couple divorced, and Benatar moved back to New York. She worked the club scene and found her guitarist and future husband Neil Giraldo. Benatar became famous in the 1980s with the release of her second album, Crimes of Passion, which included hits like "Hit Me With Your Best Shot."
Benatar released her debut album, In the Heat of the Night in 1979. The record was a smash success and included two monster hit singles, "Heartbreaker" and "I Need a Lover."
A year later, Benatar cemented her status as rock's premier female vocalist with her second album, Crimes of Passion. Backed by three big singles, "Hit Me With Your Best Shot", "Treat Me Right" and "You Better Run", the record went platinum immediately. As the decade continued, Benatar's career only grew. There were more albums and further popular singles, like "Love is a Battlefield" and "We Belong," whose videos got heavy play on MTV.
Her status as a 1980s icon, however, didn't translate entirely well in the 1990s. While Benatar continued to produce music, including albums like Gravity's Rainbow (1993) and Innamorata (1997), the singer struggled to match her earlier success.
She was also sidetracked by her family life. In 1982, Benatar and her guitarist, Neil Giraldo, married. The couple maintains a strong partnership on and off stage and they have two daughters, Haley and Hana.
In recent years Benatar, whose last album, Go, was released in 2003, has tapped into the nostalgia surrounding the 1980s. She continues to perform live, and in 2009 hit the road with another pioneering female rock musician, Blondie, for a series of concerts.
In all, Pat Benatar's career includes 10 platinum albums, eight No. 1 singles, and four Grammy awards.