Pat Benatar on why she no longer plays 'Hit Me With Your Best Shot

Virgin Radio

24 Jul 2022, 14:24

Credit: Getty

The reason is heartbreaking.

Pat Benatar is a pop icon. She's sold over two multi-platinum albums in the USA, had five platinum albums, 15 Billboard top 40 singles, while she's sold over 35 million albums worldwide. She is also a four-time Grammy Award winner and will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in November 2022.

But Pat has now revealed to USA Today the reasons why she will no longer perform her 1980 single and biggest, 'Hit Me With Your Best Shot'. And it's upsetting, but principled.

Taking about her tours setlist, Pat said, "We have what we call the 'holy 14,' songs that if we don’t play them, [the fans] will give us a hard time."

Surprisingly, 'Hit Me With Your Best Shot' is no longer in the setlist.

"We’re not doing 'Hit Me With Your Best Shot,' and fans are having a heart attack," Pat said. "I’m like, 'I’m sorry, in deference to the victims of the families of these mass shootings, I’m not singing it'."

She continued' "I tell them, if you want to hear the song, go home and listen to it. [The title] is tongue-in-cheek, but you have to draw the line. I can't say those words out loud with a smile on my face, I just can't.

"I’m not going to go on stage and soapbox. I go to my legislators. But that’s my small contribution to protesting. I’m not going to sing it," she added. "Tough."

According to Gun Violence Archive - which defines a mass shooting as a shooting with four or more injured or killed victims, not including the shooter - the USA hasn't seen one week without a mass shooting this year.

May saw the one of the deadliest school shootings in U.S. history when a gunman killed 19 elementary school students and two teachers in Uvalde, Texas. Ten days earlier, a gunman opened fire at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York, killing 10 people and wounding three others. Eleven of the victims were Black. 

And on July 4, seven people were killed and 47 people were wounded in a shooting during a parade in Highland Park, a suburb of Chicago. 

Pat Benatar is on tour in the USA from now until September.