The Pretenders is an English-American rock band founded in Hereford, United Kingdom that came to prominence during the punk and new wave movement of the late 1970s due to their innovative songwriting and charismatic performances. Since then, the band has experienced drug-related losses and numerous subsequent personnel changes, with American-born group founder, songwriter, vocalist, and rhythm guitarist Chrissie Hynde as the only consistent member.
Formed in 1978 in London, the original band Hynde, lead and rhythm guitarist James Honeyman-Scott (died 1982), bassist Pete Farndon (died 1983), and drummer Martin Chambers. Save for Hynde, a native of Akron, Ohio, the original band members were all from the U.K. This band was fractured by the drug-related deaths of Honeyman-Scott and Farndon. Since then, numerous subsequent personnel changes have taken place over the years, with Hynde as the sole constant.
With Hynde at the helm, the band experienced a critical resurgence with a trio of albums released between the mid-90s and early 00s that explored a more mature side of the band’s classic sound.
In 2008, the Pretenders' album Break Up the Concrete was released through Shangri-La Music. It was the band's first Top 40 album in the US in 22 years.
In September 2012, as part of the entertainment line-up for the 2012 Singapore Grand Prix, the Pretenders re-grouped with Hynde and Chambers from the original line-up, along with Nick Wilkinson, James Walbourne and Eric Heywood.