THEY'RE NO PRETENDERS. ROCKER REALLY IS MARRIED

Rumors Akron native Chrissie Hynde has wed true. Ceremony low-key.

by Glenn Gamboa

Beacon Journal business writer

Akron native Chrissie Hynde, arguably the first lady of alternative rock 'n' roll as the leader of the Pretenders, married for the second time last week in a low-key ceremony in London, her publicist confirmed yesterday.

Hynde, 46, married Colombian artist Lucho Brieva, 32, at the Marylebone Registery Office - the British equivalent of a justice of the peace - in London on July 10, according to a spokeswoman in the New York office of Pretenders publicist Liz Rosenberg. Rosenberg's office declined to comment on other details of the 30-minute ceremony.

However, British news reports say Hynde and Brieva, whom she has known for six months, wore freshly laundered bluejeans at the ceremony; Hynde also sported a red jacket.

After the vows were exchanged, the wedding party - which included singer Annie Lennox, bridesmaid Anna-Marie Volez and film maker Uri Fruchtmann. who is producing the Spice Girls' cinematic debut - moved to the upstairs room of nearby Abbey Road Pizza Express, where they dined on $6.50 pizzas and $14.50 bottles of wine according to the Pretenders' Website.

"We chose Pizza Express because it was so near to our home," Hynde reportedly said.

News of Hynde's surprise wedding spread over the Internet and through fan clubs earlier this week. But confirmation did not come until late yesterday.

Her parents, Mel and Dolores Hynde of Akron, could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Hynde, a 1969 graduate of Firestone High School, turned the American rock scene on its head when she returned from England as part of the punk movement of the late 1970s.

As the leader of the Pretenders, Hynde challenged stereotypes about women in rock, as well as about women guitar players. She wrote her own hard-driving songs, many of which were about growing up in Akron, and played them as angry and tough as her male counterparts.

The band's breakthrough success came in 1980 when their debut American single Brass in Pocket topped the British charts and hit the top 10 in the United States. Mainstream acceptance came in 1984 with the release of the Learning to Crawl album, which hit No. 1 around the world on the strength of the single Middle of the Road.

And Hynde's success in the '80s helped inspire the cadre of angry young women such as Alanis Morissette and Fiona Apple.

But Hynde has always been outspoken and unpredictable, and her level of success has changed with the times.

"We're all pretty excited and surprised - as usual - about the news," said Jib Croft of Studio City, Calif., who runs the Pretenders' Website (http://www.pretenders.org).

Joann D. Ball, who runs the Pretenders electronic mailing list and the unofficial Pretenders Information Service, said Hynde's fans are largely happy about the news. "We're happy to find out she's been busy," said Ball, of La Jolla, Calif. "We just hope it doesn't hold up the new record and the tour any more."

The Pretenders recently postponed their American tour, scheduled to start in August, because of a knee injury Hynde suffered, according to Pollstar Magazine.

The tour was supposed to preview material from a new album, which was scheduled to be released this year. Hynde was previously married to Simple Minds lead singer Jim Kerr, the father of her 12-year-old daughter. Her 14-year-old daughter was born from a longtime relationship she had with Ray Davies of the Kinks.

"We hope that this will make her happy and creative," said Ball.

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