Chrissie Hynde Talks Rape in New Memoir, Recent Comments About Rape Raise Ire

Kimberly RipleyLife

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Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders and solo fame has written a new memoir. Reckless: My Life as a Pretender talks of navigating the music world. It also talks of how she took up with a gang of bikers and was both beaten and raped.

Hynde recently came under fire for commenting that victims of sexual assaults need to take some of the responsibility for what happens to them.

She replied to the outrage, saying, "If you don’t want my opinion, don’t ask me for it."

It's clear from the book's excerpts that not much phases Chrissie Hynde.

She grew up in Akron, Ohio, but eventually made her way to London, where The Pretenders came into play. Just three years after the band made it big, two of its members--guitarist James Honeyman-Scott and bassist Pete Farndon--were dead from drug overdoses.

In a recent interview with CBS, Chrissie Hynde was asked if her days with the band were done.

"I knew I wasn't gonna go on with that band," she replied. "But also, I had to keep making records, 'cause, you know, I had to pay the bills and keep my thing alive."

"I think that's the good thing about taking a long time to establish what you're doing and making a lot of mistakes along the ways. When you finally achieve what you were going for, if it suddenly is taken away from you, you know, you don't want to let it go," Chrissie Hynde added.

Chrissie Hynde still visits her roots in Akron, but she lives in London to this very day. A grandmother at 64, she admits to partying significantly less than in years before.

"Everyone in my game comes to the same conclusion eventually, and that's that they have to back off," she said of the partying scene.

Chrissie Hynde thinks of herself as an arranger. She writes songs, brings them to her band, and the arranging begins. She used the term when asked if she thinks she's talented.

"I never really thought of it like that. I guess, you know, I'm--everyone has their talents. I know what mine are. Mine's looking after a band and orchestrating a rock band. That's what I'm good at. I'm kind of like an arranger," she said.

Chrissie Hynde--as everyone who has spent even a short time following her music career knows--is very talented. She's as amazing at 64 as she was during The Pretenders' heyday.

Will you be checking out Reckless: My Life as a Pretender to learn even more about the singer-songwriter--and arranger? It hits bookstore shelves on Tuesday.

Kimberly Ripley
Kimberly Ripley is a freelance writer and published author from Portsmouth, New Hampshire. A wife, mom of five and 'Nana' to Lilly and Aiden, she loves cooking for her big family and watching HGTV in her spare time. Kim is guilty of starting way more home design projects than she can finish. Visit her at Twitter and Facebook.