Pat Benatar has delivered a wide range of memorable material in a career spanning decades.
Her debut album, In the Heat of the Night, dates back to 1979. The success of its breakout single, “Heartbreaker,” immediately put Benatar in the spotlight. The sessions, however, had been trying. Benatar even went so far as to call the early sessions “a disaster.”
“Everything was wrong,” she said in the 2010 memoir Between a Heart and a Rock Place. “The tracks were played technically well, but they had no soul, no passion. The recordings were a fiasco. I cried for days, saying that I was finished before I’d even started.”
Things changed for the better with the arrival of guitarist Neil “Spyder” Giraldo. “From the moment we first started collaborating, I knew Spyder was a visionary,” Benatar added. “His mind never stopped. He was constantly experimenting and trying new things, yet he knew precisely what needed to be pushed farther and what needed to be discarded. It was exactly what I had been missing.”
Thus began an incredibly fruitful partnership, as Benatar and Giraldo would collaborate on all of her music moving forward. The duo later married, and their rock n’ roll romance ultimately inspired a Broadway musical.
With Giraldo providing songwriting and production support, Benatar emerged as one of the preeminent female voices in rock. Six albums reached platinum sales or better as Benatar built a hall of fame career. But which one topped them all? Check out our ranking of every Pat Benatar studio album, from worst to best.