Personalities | The Pretenders | Eighties | Rock
(Vocal/instrumental group, 1978–present)
Ohio-born, British-based Chrissie Hynde’s tough, tuneful voice has established her as an iconic female rocker. Drawing on punk and 1960s pop (she had a daughter with The Kinks’ Ray Davies and had hits with two of his songs, ‘Stop Your Sobbing’ and ‘I Go To Sleep’), The Pretenders produced an exhilarating, melodic hybrid with broad appeal. ‘Brass In Pocket’ was a 1979 UK No. 1, and a hit in 1980 in her native US, which had already sent the band’s self-titled debut to the Top 10. Hynde and drummer Martin Chambers overcame the loss of original members James Honeyman-Scott (guitar, keyboards) and Pete Farndon (bass) to drugs in 1982 and 1983, and Pretenders II (1981) and Learning To Crawl (1984) also charted highly. In 1986, ‘Don’t Get Me Wrong’ went Top 10. Further albums have been successful, if released at increasing intervals. Hynde spends much of her time campaigning for animals, her place in modern pop assured.
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