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Between a Heart and a Rock Place: A Memoir Hardcover – June 15, 2010
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From the Back Cover
For more than thirty years, Pat Benatar has been one of the most iconic women in rock music, with songs like "Heartbreaker," "Hit Me with Your Best Shot," and "Love Is a Battlefield" becoming anthems for multiple generations of fans. Now, in this intimate and uncompromising memoir, one of the bestselling female rock artists of all time shares the story of her extraordinary career, telling the truth about her life, her struggles, and how she won things—her way.
From her early days in the New York club scene of the 1970s to headlining sold-out arena tours, Benatar offers a fascinating account of a life spent behind the microphone. As the first female artist ever to be played on MTV, she speaks candidly about the realities of breaking into the boys' club of rock and roll at a time when people everywhere still believed a woman's only place in popular music was as a girlfriend, a groupie, or a sex symbol. And though her fiery edge and aggressive swagger produced instant success, they also led to fights over her image that would linger for years to come.
Going backstage and into the studio, Benatar sets the record straight about how her music evolved, illustrating the visionary role that her guitarist, producer, and eventual husband, Neil "Spyder" Giraldo, played in combining her classically trained voice with razor-sharp guitar to create her unique hard-rock sound. Together they formed a musical and spiritual bond that would last a lifetime, helping her stay true to herself while avoiding the pitfalls and excesses of rock stardom.
Written with the attitude and defiance that embodies Pat Benatar's music, Between a Heart and a Rock Place is a rock-and-roll story unlike any other, a remarkable tale of playing by your own rules, even if that means breaking a fewof theirs.
About the Author
One of the most accomplished female rock musicans of all time, multiple Grammy Award-winner Pat Benatar has sold more than 22 million records and produced nineteen Top 40 singles. She lives in California with her husband and two daughters.
Top customer reviews
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If you're looking for dirt and gossip a la "I'm With The Band" this isn't your book. "Mine is one of the only stories that doesn't involve at least one trip to rehab," Benatar writes, and it's true. About the closest she comes to that is writing about her first marriage to a man who suffered from PTSS after returning from Vietnam--who was also the man who gave her her famous last name. Wanting to be with him derailed Benatar's original ambition of a classical career, blowing off her Julliard audition much to the horror of her high school vocal coach. It was another man, however, who understood what Benatar wanted to do and collaborated with her--Neil "Spyder" Giraldo, whom Benatar immediately fell in love with while recording her first album and gives major credit for shaping her sound, not to mention being her husband of nearly thirty years. Pat Benatar is not a solo artist in their minds, but a band, and the stories that are told show that mindset.
Benatar writes scathingly about the rampant sexism involved in the music business at that time, about how what she wore and how sexy she acted seemed to be more important than the music, to the point that when she had given birth to her oldest daughter she was essentially forbidden to talk about the baby for fear it would detract from her rock vixen image. She also lends a lot of insight on what it's like to be basically a slave to a record company, how she and Giraldo fought to get him songwriting and producing credits, how the mandated album-and-tour-every-nine-months schedule nearly killed her career in the late eighties because of oversaturation.
Today at 57, Benatar has become one of the elder stateswoman of women in rock and she is rightfully credited for paving the way for bands like the Donnas and Kittie, where no one thinks it's weird for girls to rock. Her offstage life is peaceful, raising two daughters whose friends think of her as "Haley and Hana's mom who happens to sing." As they have done for the past few years she and Giraldo are out on a summer tour, and having seen her last year I can assure you she hits the high notes as well as she did in her heyday. Even if you're not a Pat Benatar fan "Between a Heart and a Rock Place" is an enjoyable read by a woman who lived the rock star dream but never lost sight of the importance of family and following your instincts.
I loved being able to really have an inside look at the recording process, the song writing process, life on the road. I also had an insider’s look at how poorly women rockers can be treated, and the record company shall not remain nameless: Chrysalis was horrible. I cannot believe what Ms. Benatar endured, it is truly beyond comprehension. It’s a good thing Ms. Benatar is opinionated, because I can hardly imagine how even worse it could have been. Yes, it was an eye-opener.
BETWEEN A HEART AND A ROCK PLACE is very well written, very candid, with great photos, and it kept me up way past my bedtime. It’s a very enlightening book, and very entertaining as well. With all the romance novels around, it would take a rocker to best describe what is love and love at first sight, which Ms. Benatar does astonishingly well.
Most recent customer reviews
Thank You, CP!!