Born Patricia Andrzejewski on this day in Brooklyn, New York, Pat Benatar (1953-) was a classically trained singer who married her high school sweetheart.
She worked in a bank before following her dream to become a Rock and Roll star, inspired by the hard-rocking Robert Plant and Led Zeppelin.
"I believe there comes a time when everything just falls in line," she sang in All Fired Up. The petite singer boldly possesses perfect pitch and a four-octave voice.
"It's always better to write your own songs," she said. "I know what is best for me."
Benatar was signed by Chrysalis Records in 1978 and released In the Heat of the Night, a passionate explosion of tough-girl rock. She became the most successful female hard rock singer of the 80s, her hits include Heartbreaker, Hit Me With Your Best Shot, Hell is for Children, and I Need a Lover.
"You know history being history, everything that comes before has some impact on what follows but you never really know how much," she explained.
On Maui in 1982, she married second husband Neil Giraldo, her guitarist and creative partner who "unlocked the passion" in her voice. Together they created music that Benatar described as "empowerment and not taking crap from anyone."
"When he started to play aggressively, my voice opened up," she said. "I had stuff in there I didn't even know I had."
In response to the September 11, 2001 World Trade Center tragedy, Benatar recorded a single called Christmas in America, a patriotic Christmas carol. "I can't remember ever being affected by anything like that," she said. "I grew up in New York and watched them build the towers."
She said, "We write songs that are reflective of the time that you're at."
Keep the faith.