“Shadows of the Night” by Pat Benatar

The titular “shadows of the night” read as if, ultimately, they are meant to point to various challenges which couples face in maintaining a romantic relationship. And what the singer is telling the addressee, i.e. her lover, is that despite these potential setbacks if they stay committed to each other their union will overcome. So basically what she is espousing throughout is the idea of the two of them giving their all to each other. 

Or another way of interpreting the sentiments expressed is that they are stronger as a unit than individually. Indeed going back to the aforementioned “shadows of the night”, the underlying understanding of the song is that these ills are counteracted by having someone to genuinely open up to. So basically, the singer has found an individual who is willing to play this role in her life and vice versa. And she also serves as his motivator, telling him that if he is indeed free with her his “dreams” will “come true” when all is said and done.

Music Video

Pat Benatar came out with a cinematic music video for this song, which can be seen above. This video featured noted Hollywood actors Judge Reinhold and Bill Paxton (1955-2017).

Facts about “Shadows of the Night”

“Shadows of the Night” was produced by Pat’s regular collaborators Peter Coleman and Neil Giraldo. Interesting to note is that the latter is Pat’s husband whom she married shortly before this song came out.

The writers of the track include Benatar and the following:

  • D. L. Byron
  • Myron Grombacher

It is Bryon who is acknowledged as the primary writer of “Shadows of the Night”. He wrote it specifically for a movie called “Times Square” (1980). However, the makers of the film opted not to use it. Also his own record label at the time, Arista, weren’t feeling the track.

So the tune was recorded by a couple of other artists – both Helen Schneider and Rachel Sweet in 1981 – before ultimately landing in the hands of Benatar.

Benatar’s version is considered to be the most-successful of the three. Chrysalis Records released it on 18 September 1982 as the lead single from her album entitled “Get Nervous”. The track went on to peak at number 13 on the coveted Hot 100 chart. It also made it into the UK Singles Chart and charted in three other countries.

Also Pat Benatar won a Grammy as a result of “Shadows of the Night”, specifically in 1983 in the category of “Best Female Rock Vocal Performance“. In fact it was the third year in a row she took home this award. She even went on to win it again the following year with the song “Love is a Battlefield“.

“Shadows of the Night” can be found on the 2014 “Grand Theft Auto V” video game. 

Mary J. Blige covered the tune in 2012 for the movie “Rock of Ages”. Additionally Demi Lovato sampled it on her track “Really Don’t Care” (2014).

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