One of the most acclaimed female artists in rock-n-roll, Chrissie Hynde was the sultry singer and chief songwriter for the Pretenders, who generated hits through the 1980s and 1990s with spiky, soulful tunes like "Brass in Pocket," "Middle of the Road," "Back on the Chain Gang" and "I'll Stand By You. " Hynde escaped the drudgery of her Midwestern upbringing by escaping to London at the dawn of the punk movement. There, she formed the Pretenders, a quartet whose sound owed as much to American garage rock and Motown as it did to The Clash. An immediate success with the release of their self-titled debut in 1980, the Pretenders would undergo numerous lineup changes over the next two decades which would at one point leave Hynde the only original member. For many fans, Hynde was the heart of the Pretenders, delivering songs and performances that were alternately tough and tender, heartfelt and defiant - in short, the work of a true romantic. The induction of Hynde and the Pretenders into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2005 underscored her numerous contributions to popular music over the course of a three-decade career, as well as her pioneering status as a female rocker with no apologies for her gender.