Eurythmics were a British pop rock duo consisting of members Annie Lennox and David A. Stewart (both previously in the bands The Catch and The Tourists), formed in 1980, currently disbanded, but known to reunite from time to time.
Eurythmics released their first album, “In the Garden,” in 1981 to little fanfare. The album mixed psychedelic, krautrock and electropop influences, and featured their debut single “Never Gonna Cry Again.”
The pair's commercial breakthrough came with their second album, “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This),” released in January 1983. The successful title track featured a dark and powerful sequenced synth bass line and a dramatic video that introduced the now orange crew-cut Lennox to audiences. The song reached #2 on the U.K. Singles chart, becoming one of the year's biggest sellers, and later topped the U.S. charts. The band's fortunes changed immensely from this moment on, and Lennox quickly became a pop icon, gracing the covers of numerous magazines including Rolling Stone. Their previous single, “Love Is a Stranger,” was also re-released and became another chart success.
The duo quickly recorded a follow-up album, “Touch,” which was released in November 1983. It became the duo's first #1 album in the U.K., and also spawned three major hit singles. “Who's That Girl?” was a Top 3 hit in the U.K. The upbeat, calypso-flavored ‘Right by Your Side” showed a different side of Eurythmics altogether and also made the Top 10, and “Here Comes the Rain Again” (#8 in the U.K., #4 in the U.S.) was an orchestral/synth ballad (with orchestrations by Michael Kamen).
In 1984 RCA released “Touch Dance,” a mini-album of remixes of four of the tracks from Touch, aimed at the club market. Also released in 1984 was Eurythmics' soundtrack album “1984 (For the Love of Big Brother).” Virgin Films had contracted the band to provide a soundtrack for Michael Radford's modern film adaptation of George Orwell's “Nineteen Eighty-Four.” However, Radford later said that the music had been “foisted” on his film against his wishes, and that Virgin had replaced most of Dominic Muldowney's original orchestral score with the Eurythmics soundtrack. However, the record was presented as "music derived from the original score of Eurythmics for the Michael Radford film version of Orwell's ‘1984’." Eurythmics charged that they had been misled by the film's producers as well, and the album was withdrawn from the market for a period while matters were litigated. The album's first single, “Sexcrime (Nineteen Eighty-Four),” was a Top 5 hit in the U.K., and a major dance success in the U.S., but its supposedly suggestive title resulted in many U.S. pop radio stations refusing to play the track.
The duo's next album, “Be Yourself Tonight,” was produced in a week in Paris.. Almost a dozen other musicians were enlisted, including members of Tom Petty's Heartbreakers, guest harmonica from Stevie Wonder, bass guitar from Dean Garcia, string arrangements by Michael Kamen, and Lennox singing duets with Aretha Franklin and Elvis Costello. It continued the duo's transatlantic chart domination in 1985, and contained four hit singles, “Would I Lie to You?” was a Billboard Top 5 hit, while “There Must Be an Angel (Playing with My Heart)” featuring Wonder's harmonica contribution, became their first and only U.K. #1 single. “It's Alright (Baby's Coming Back)” and the feministic Franklin duet “Sisters Are Doin' It for Themselves” also rode high in the charts.
Eurythmics released their next album, “Revenge,” in 1986. The album continued their move towards a band sound, verging on a pop/rock sound. Sales continued to be strong in the U.K., but were somewhat slower in the U.S., though “Missionary Man” reached #14 on the Hot 100 Singles chart.
In 1987, Lennox and Stewart released the album “Savage.” This saw a fairly radical change within the group's sound, being based mainly around programmed samples and drum loops. Lyrically the songs showed an even darker, more obsessive side to Lennox's writing. The brazen, sexually charged rocker, “I Need a Man” remains a Eurythmics staple, as does “You Have Placed a Chill in My Heart.” Much less commercial than the two previous albums, “Savage” was mostly ignored in the U.S., although rock radio in more progressive markets supported “I Need a Man.: In the duo's native U.K. however, the album was a Top 10 success.
In 1989, Eurythmics released the album “We Too Are One,” which entered the U.K. Albums chart at #1 and gave the duo four U.K. Top 30 hit singles. The album was a return to the rock/pop sound of their mid-80s albums.
After strenuous years of touring and recording (Eurythmics had released eight studio albums in eight years), a rift had developed between the duo and Eurythmics disbanded, although no official notice was given. The duo had very little communication with each other from 1991 to 1998. In 1991, Eurythmics' “Greatest Hits” collection was released, entering the U.K. Albums chart at #1 and spending a total of 10 weeks at that position, as well as becoming a massive worldwide seller. In 1993, a live album entitled “Live 1983–1989” featuring recordings from various years throughout Eurythmics' career was also released.
In the late 1990s, Eurythmics reunited and recorded a new album, “Peace,” which was released in 1999. The single “I Saved the World Today” reached #11 on the U.K. Singles chart, and a remix of “17 Again” gave the duo their first chart-topper on the Billboard Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart.