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Back On The Chain Gang by Pretenders
Album: Learning To CrawlReleased: 1982Charted:
This is a tribute to James Honeyman-Scott, the Pretenders guitarist who died of a drug overdose in 1982 at age 26. Scott's death was followed by bass player Pete Farndon's 10 months later. Farndon had been kicked out of the band because of his drug problems and died of an overdose.
The "picture of you" Chrissie Hynde sings about is a picture she found in her wallet of Ray Davies, leader of the band The Kinks. Hynde and Davies were a couple and had a daughter together. This song started off about him, but the meaning changed when Honeyman-Scott died.
This is a very emotional song. Chrissie Hynde sometimes tears up when performing it.
A Chain Gang is a group of convicts who are chained together while they do manual labor, usually outside.
This was the first Pretenders single featuring Billy Bremner and Tony Butler, who replaced Farndon and Honeyman-Scott.
This was released as a single almost 2 years before the album came out.