Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo share an intimate evening of acoustic music and stories with a receptive audience in the heart of Pennsylvania Dutch Country.

Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo have been writing and performing hit songs for over 38 years. As a collaborative musical team, the couple remains very active writing, touring, and performing.  At 65 and 62, Benatar and Giraldo continue to play to classic rock lovers helping to keep their unmistakable sound alive that fueled so many fans during the MTV years when videos could help steer a bands career.

As the couple strolled onto the stage together, Pat and Neil looked up to the task of releasing a musical vibe throughout the theatre that would engage and enthrall the folks that had dared a cold, rainy night.  Communicating their thoughts and music through stories and song was a perfect way to spend an intimate evening with these artists. 

Delving into an extensive music repertoire, Benatar and Giraldo played a variety of songs from old hits to deep tracks and newer material.  Pat asked the audience if anybody knew about “The Holy 14”  explaining that the two try to play as many songs from their most popular hits, otherwise the people of Facebook give them shit online.  The two joked all evening long, but definitely came to perform, and perform they did. 

“All Fired Up,” “We Live for Love,” and “Promises in the Dark” started the set.  The show consisted of Neil switching between acoustic guitar and keyboards, and Pat doing what has inspired so many women musicians over the years by directing the music with the strength of her voice.  Her vocals sounded so good, it’s amazing to hear Benatar sing with such ferocity and intensity, pouring such emotion into her delivery.  

Neil enjoyed sharing his thoughts about songwriting over the course of the evening. Hit songs should include strong lyrics, melody, treatment, and should be identifiable from the opening of the song, he explained.  Good chord progressions and musical changes contribute to the process and help stitch lyrics and music together when composing songs.  

“Run Between the Raindrops” from Seven the Hard Way (1985), “Ties that Bind,” off of Gravity’s Rainbow (1993), and “Let’s Stay Together” released on Wide Awake in Dreamland (1988) are some deeper tracks that have been a staple in the couple’s recent acoustic concerts.  “After the Fall,” a brand new song about time healing hurts and disappointments, and “Shine” are some of the newer tunes the couple played.

There is something about acoustic shows that just vibe differently.  They create a pleasurable atmosphere in that you feel like you are getting to know the artists in a more personal way.  “Hit Me With Your Best Shot,” “You Better Run,” “Love is a Battlefield,” and “Heartbreaker” presented themselves differently than when played electrically.  Acoustically, they bring an element of appreciation to the songs when they get stripped down to that format.

It was evident that Benatar and Giraldo are enjoying their time together as musicians, as well as partners in life.  The two are very well-humored and sociable while performing, and very appreciative to be able to have the time they are spending side-by-side through this journey of life.

Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo
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The American Music Theatre
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Event Date: 07-FEB-2018