Pretenders |  Artist

Pretenders | Artist

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The Pretenders are an English-American rock band formed 1978 in Hereford, UK, by Chrissie Hynde (vocals, guitar), James Honeyman-Scott (guitar, keyboard, vocals), Pete Farndon (bass, vocals), and Martin Chambers (drums, vocals). The band catapulted to fame in the late 70's with the hit song "Brass in Pocket" off their superb debut album Pretenders (1980). Hynde, originally from Akron, Ohio, moved to London in 1973, working at the NME and at Malcolm McLaren and Vivienne Westwood's clothes store "Sex". Hynde was involved with early versions of the Clash and the Damned and played in several short-lived bands. The Pretenders formed in 1978 after Dave Hill at Anchor Records heard some demos of Hynde's music. The band's first single, a cover of the Kinks song "Stop Your Sobbing" was produced by Nick Lowe and released in January 1979, gaining critical attention. It was followed in June with the Chris Thomas produced singles "Kid", then in January 1980 "Brass in Pocket" which reached No. 1 in the UK and in the US No. 14 on the Billboard Hot 100. Their self-titled debut album was released in January 1980 and was a success in the UK and US both critically and commercially. It is regarded as one of the best debut albums of all time and Rolling Stone named it one of their best albums of all time. The band's sound was a perfect fusion of punk-edged rock-n-roll with influences of new wave staccato rhythms. 1981 saw the release of their second album Pretenders II, which was good but a step down from their debut. Tragically, 1982 saw the deaths of James Honeyman-Scott and Pete Farndon, both from drug-related causes. Hynde and Chambers continued the band, with stand-in players Billy Bremner of Rockpile, and Big Country bassist Tony Butler. This lineup recorded the single "Back on the Chain Gang" which became the group's biggest success in the US. The band's third studio album, the excellent Learning to Crawl was released in 1984. To-date, the band has released 10 studio albums, but the clear stand-outs are the first three albums, plus the excellent 1987 compilation The Singles. Front-woman Chrissie Hynde has also released several solo albums.

Artist Website: thepretenders.com

Featured Albums: Pretenders

Related Artists: Chrissie Hynde, The Pretenders