Following The Pretenders 1978 signing to Real Records on the basis of a demo of the song "The Phone Call",
the band quickly rose to critical attention with the January 1979 single,
"Stop Your Sobbing", written in 1964 by Ray Davies for The Kinks and produced by Nick Lowe. It was followed in quick succession that year by the popular singles "Kid" in June and "Brass in Pocket" in November, which cracked the American market for the band (reaching #14 on the Billboard Hot 100), and reached no.1 in the UK.
The Pretenders debut album was released in January 1980,
and was a great success in both the UK and the US, both critically and with chart-topping sales. (Pretenders was subsequently named one of the best albums of all time by VH1 (#52) and Rolling Stone (#155).)
That the Pretenders were led by a hard-rocking woman was no small factor in their early breakthrough. With her trademark dark bangs, dark eyeliner, and dark jeans, Hynde appealed to both genders.
And due to, as the 1983 Rolling Stone Record Guide would say, "her sheer authenticity as a three-dimensional woman whose sexuality is completely in sync with a superb rock sensibility," she was able to escape many of the clichéd roles of women in rock music.
Stop Your Sobbing