Template:Infobox musical artist 2

Annie Lennox (born 25 December 1954, in Aberdeen) is a Scottish musician, vocalist and Academy Award-winning songwriter.[1] She is both a solo artist and the lead singer of the musical duo Eurythmics, hailed as "The Greatest White Soul Singer Alive" by members of the rock industry on the VH1 show 100 Greatest Women of Rock and Roll in 1999. Rolling Stone magazine also named her as one of their 100 Greatest Singers of All Time.[2] Both as a solo artist and with Eurythmics, Lennox has sold over 80 million records. Lennox is also a political and social activist, leading such events as an anti-war rally in London on 3 January 2009 in response to the conflict in Gaza[2] and she also objected to the unauthorised use of the 1999 Eurythmics song "I Saved the World Today" in an election broadcast for Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni.[3] Annie Lennox has a contralto vocal range.

Early life

Lennox was born on Christmas Day, 1954, in Aberdeen. Her father worked at the shipyard, and her mother was a cook until she became a housewife. Lennox was an only child and the family lived in a small two-roomed apartment in a block of flats with communal laundry facilities. Her father and his family were musical and enjoyed singing. Her father also learned to play the bagpipes, which Lennox enjoyed listening to. Despite her family's financial status, Lennox had piano lessons at school from the age of seven years at the cost of £4.00 per term. She was interested in singing and, with plenty of time by herself, passed some of the time by singing along to the popular music of the time, including music by The Beatles. She was an unhappy teenager, partly because of a struggle over boundaries for her independence with her overprotective father.[1] She attended Aberdeen High School for Girls, now Harlaw Academy.[1][4] In 1964, her early talent was demonstrated when she came second in a talent contest at a Butlins holiday camp. She sang the song "Máire's Wedding".[5]

Personal life

Both Lennox's parents died of cancer.[1] Her first marriage from 1984 to 1985 was to Radha Raman. From 1988 to 2000, she was married to Israeli film and record producer Uri Fruchtmann. They have two daughters, Lola (born 1990) and Tali (born 1993); a son, Daniel, was stillborn in December, 1988.[6][7]

Royal Academy of Music

Lennox won a place at the Royal Academy of Music in London, where she studied the flute and classical music for three years. As a student she realised that her flute playing was mediocre in comparison to some of her talented peers; although, previously she had thought that she was a good flute player. She lived on a student grant and worked at part-time jobs for extra money. Lennox was unhappy during her time at the Royal Academy partly because she was lonely and shy, and she missed many history of music lessons.[1]

Lennox's flute teacher's final report stated: "Ann has not always been sure of where to direct her efforts, though lately she has been more committed. She is very, very able, however." Two years later, Lennox reported to the Academy: "I have had to work as a waitress, barmaid, and shop assistant to keep me when not in musical work." In 2006, the academy made her an honorary Fellow.[8] Lennox also was made a Fellow of the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama that year.

The Tourists and Eurythmics

Lennox With Eurythmics

Between 1977 and 1980, Lennox was the lead singer of The Tourists, a moderately successful British pop band and her first collaboration with Dave Stewart. During the time they were in The Tourists, Stewart and Lennox were involved in a relationship, though this had ended by the time they formed Eurythmics.

Lennox and Stewart's second collaboration, the 1980s synthpop duo Eurythmics, resulted in her most notable fame, as the duo's alto, soul-tinged lead singer. Early in Eurythmics' career, Lennox was known for her androgyny, wearing suits and once impersonating Elvis Presley. Eurythmics released a long line of singles in the 1980s, including "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)", "Here Comes the Rain Again", "Who's That Girl?", "Would I Lie to You?", "There Must Be an Angel (Playing with My Heart)", "Missionary Man", "You Have Placed a Chill in My Heart", and "Don't Ask Me Why", among others. Though Eurythmics never officially disbanded, Lennox made a fairly clear break from Stewart in 1990. Thereafter, she began a long and equally-successful solo career.

Lennox and Stewart later collaborated on two new pieces for their Eurythmics hits album, Ultimate Collection, of which "I've Got a Life" was released as a single on 31 October 2005. The promotional video for the song features Lennox and Stewart performing in the present day, with images of past Eurythmics videos playing on television screens behind them. Lennox also appears in a man's suit with a cane, reminiscent of her "Sweet Dreams" video image from 1983. The single hit number fourteen in the UK singles chart and was a number-one U.S. Dance hit. Lennox has been awarded eight BRIT Awards, the most of any woman, including one as part of Eurythmics. The closest other female artist to this record is Dido, with four.

From the beginning of her career, Lennox has experimented with her image both as an artist and as a woman. She matured as a public figure in the late 20th century, just as MTV and the medium of video were becoming the obvious vehicles for selling contemporary popular music. She has managed her image astutely, both as a means of interpreting and marketing her music. This was emphasized in the music video for "Little Bird" in 1992, in which many Lennox lookalikes could be seen who were dressed as her many different personas from past videos.

Solo work

Early solo work

Though it was produced by Dave Stewart, a 1988 single from the movie Scrooged with Al Green, "Put a Little Love in Your Heart" (a cover version of Jackie DeShannon's 1969 hit), was credited to Lennox and Green, and therefore can be considered her first release outside a band identity. This one-off "solo" single climbed all the way to #2 on the US Adult Contemporary chart, hinting at Annie's future direction in this respective musical genre. In 1990, her version of Cole Porter's "Ev'ry Time We Say Goodbye" appeared on the Porter tribute compilation Red Hot + Blue, a benefit for AIDS awareness. Lennox also performed the song that same year for a cameo appearance in the Derek Jarman film Edward II. She then made a memorable appearance with David Bowie and the surviving members of Queen at 1992's Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert at London's Wembley Stadium, performing "Under Pressure."

Diva (1992)

Lennox began working with former Trevor Horn protegé Stephen Lipson, beginning with her 1992 solo début album, Diva. It was a commercial and critical success, charting #1 in the UK, #6 in Germany, and #23 in the US. Lennox's profile was boosted by Diva's singles, which included "Why" and "Walking on Broken Glass". "Little Bird" also formed a double A-side with "Love Song for a Vampire", a soundtrack cut for Francis Ford Coppola's 1992 movie Bram Stoker's Dracula. The B-side of her single "Precious" was a self-penned song called "Step by Step", which was later covered by Whitney Houston for the soundtrack of the film The Preacher's Wife. Houston's cover was a hit in its own right.

Medusa (1995)

Although Lennox's profile decreased for a period due to her desire to bring up her two children outside of the media's glare, she continued to record albums. Her second release, Medusa, was an album of cover songs, including songs originally performed by Bob Marley and The Clash. It was released in 1995, three years after Diva. The single "No More I Love You's" received the 1995 Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. A cover of Paul Simon's "Something So Right" made the UK Top 50 when released as a single. In 1997, Lennox re-recorded Eurythmics' track "Angel" for the Diana, Princess of Wales, tribute album. In 1998 — following the death of a mutual friend (the former The Tourists lead singer/songwriter Peet Coombes) — she re-established contact with Dave Stewart,[citation needed] and by 1999 Eurythmics had reformed for the album Peace.

Bare (2003) and other work

In 2003, Lennox released her third solo album, Bare. Lennox also embarked on a worldwide solo tour to promote the album.

In 2004, Lennox won the Academy Award for Best Song for "Into the West" from the film The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King at the 76th Academy Awards, which she co-wrote with lyricist Fran Walsh and composer Howard Shore. The song also won a Grammy award and a Golden Globe award. She had previously recorded "Use Well the Days" for the movie, which incorporates a number of quotations from Tolkien in its lyrics. This song was not used in the film, but it appears on a bonus DVD included with the "special edition" of the movie's soundtrack CD.

In mid-2004, Lennox embarked on an extensive North American tour with Sting.

In July 2005, Lennox performed at Live 8 in Hyde Park, London, along with Madonna, Sting, and other popular musicians.

In October 2006, Lennox spoke at the British House of Commons on the need for children in the UK to help their counterparts in Africa.

Songs of Mass Destruction (2007)

Ending her long association with Stephen Lipson, Lennox's fourth solo album, Songs of Mass Destruction, was recorded in Los Angeles, California, with veteran producer Glen Ballard (known for the production of Alanis Morissette's album, Jagged Little Pill). The album was mixed in Miami, Florida, by Grammy Award-winner Tom Lord-Alge.

Lennox stated that she believed the album consisted of "twelve strong, powerful, really emotive songs that people can connect to." If she achieves that, she says, "I can feel proud of [it], no matter if it sells ten copies or 50 million."[9]

The album was released on 1 October 2007, and is the last album of Lennox's contract with BMG. The album's first single was "Dark Road", released on 24 September.

Lennox described it as "a dark album, but the world is a dark place. It's fraught, it's turbulent. Most people's lives are underscored with dramas of all kinds: there's ups, there's downs - the flickering candle."[10] She added, "Half the people are drinking or drugging themselves to numb it. A lot of people are in pain."[10]

One song on the album, "Sing", is a collaboration between Lennox and 23 prominent female artists and acts: Anastacia, Isobel Campbell, Dido, Céline Dion, Melissa Etheridge, Fergie, Beth Gibbons, Faith Hill, Angelique Kidjo, Beverley Knight, Gladys Knight, k.d. lang, Madonna, Sarah McLachlan, Beth Orton, Pink, Kelis, Bonnie Raitt, Shakira, Shingai Shoniwa, Joss Stone, Sugababes, KT Tunstall, and Martha Wainwright. The song is born out of Lennox's involvement with Nelson Mandela's 46664 campaign and Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), both of which are human rights groups which seek education and health care for those affected by the HIV AIDS virus. Included among the group are TAC activist members own vocal group known as "The Generics", whose CD of music inspired Lennox to make "Sing". Lennox has established a Sing website to promote her activities in support of AIDS awareness issues."[11]

Retailer Barnes & Noble has an exclusive version of the album which contains two bonus tracks: an acoustic version of "Dark Road" and a new song, "Don't Take Me Down." Barnes & Noble's version also contains a second disc with the music video of "Dark Road" and audio commentary by Lennox about each song on the album


To promote Songs of Mass Destruction, Lennox embarked on a primarily North American tour called "Annie Lennox Sings", which she announced on 13 September 2007. Lasting throughout October and November, 2007, the tour included 18 stops: San Diego, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Dallas, Boulder, Minneapolis, Chicago, Detroit, Toronto, Washington, D.C., Nashville, Atlanta, Miami, New York City (two dates), Philadelphia, and Boston. The venues generally were at medium-size theatres, except in New York, where one of the dates was a United Nations fundraiser at midtown restaurant Cipriani. This was only the third solo tour of Lennox's career.

Artist Carina Round accompanied Lennox on the tour as an opener, promoting her third album, Slow Motion Addict.

The Annie Lennox Collection (2009)

Finishing out her contract with Sony BMG, Lennox released a "Best Of" collection, The Annie Lennox Collection. Initially intended for release on 15 September 2008, the release date was pushed back several months to allow Lennox to recuperate from a back injury.[12] The compilation was eventually released in the US on 17 February 2009, and in the UK and Europe on 9 March 2009. Included on the tracklisting are songs from her four solo albums, one from the Bram Stoker's Dracula soundtrack, and two new songs. One of these is a cover of Ash's single, "Shining Light", for which a music video has been produced and features Lennox playing all the parts of the band. The single became Lennox's first UK top 40 solo hit since 1995. A DVD was released along with the CD in one of the album's editions and a UK edition also features a second CD of rarer songs including a version of REM's "Everybody Hurts" with Alicia Keys and Lennox's Oscar winning "Into The West" from the third Lord Of The Rings film.

The album entered the UK chart at No.2, becoming her fifth Top Ten solo album, and her fourth Top 3 album.

Departure from Sony BMG and future

Lennox's recording contract with Sony BMG concluded with the release of "Songs Of Mass Destruction" and her subsequent retrospective album "The Collection", and much was made in the press in late 2007/early 2008 about apparent animosity between Lennox and the record company. Lennox stated that while on a trip to South Africa in December 2007 to appear at the 46664 campaign in Johannesburg, the regional company office of the label failed to return phone calls and e-mails she made to them for three weeks, and had completely failed to promote the Sing project as planned. Upon her return to the UK, Lennox met with the head of Sony BMG UK, Ged Docherty, who was "mortified" by the problems she had encountered with the South African branch. However the debacle (partly fuelled when Lennox's dissatisfaction with the South African office was made public on her blog) led to press reports falsely stating that she was being dropped by Sony BMG. The record company themselves quickly refuted the rumour stating that Lennox's contract had merely been fulfilled and that they hoped she would consider remaining with them. The British Daily Mirror newspaper subsequently printed a retraction of its story about her being dropped by the label.[13]

Now no longer signed to the label, Lennox herself stated she would be taking her time to decide how any future music she makes will be released.

Music videos

Main article: Annie Lennox discography § Music videos

Both during her work with Eurythmics and in her solo career, Lennox has released an unusually large number of music videos. Diva was accompanied by videos for every song except one, which differed from the usual practice of only producing a video for the single releases. Actors Hugh Laurie and John Malkovich appeared in the music video for "Walking on Broken Glass", while the video for "Little Bird" paid homage to characters who had appeared in some of Lennox's previous videos. Played by women (and some men in drag), the clip includes her characters from "Why", "Walking on Broken Glass", "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)", "Beethoven (I Love to Listen to)", "I Need a Man", "Thorn in My Side", "There Must Be an Angel", and even the Freddie Mercury tribute. Following on from "There Must Be an Angel", many of her solo videos have a very classically theatrical feel with dramatic and comedic flourishes, sometimes in period settings.

Gay icon

Lennox has garnered a prominent following by members of the LGBT community. According to The Advocate, "[h]er distinctive voice and provocative stage persona have made Lennox a longtime gay icon."[14] With her music videos earning regular rotation on MTV in the early 1980s, Lennox took part in the shaping of popular culture along side other gay icons such as Boy George, Courtney Love, Madonna, Morrissey, Me'Shell Ndegéocello, and Michael Stipe.[15]


Main article: Annie Lennox discography


Year Album details Peak chart positions Certification
1992 Diva
  • Released: 6 April 1992
  • Format: CD, CS, LP
1 25 7 48 6 3 5 11 5
  • UK: 4× Platinum
  • US: 2× Platinum
  • GER: Gold
1995 Medusa
  • Released: 14 March 1995
  • Format: CD, CS
1 11 5 5 5 4 7 2 6 4 4
  • UK: 2× Platinum
  • US: 2× Platinum
  • GER: Gold
2003 Bare 3 23 4 10 20 34 5 7 18 17 7 13 16 29
  • UK: Gold
  • US: Gold
2007 Songs of Mass Destruction
  • Released: 1 October 2007
  • Format: CD, digital download
7 21 9 41 28 15 3 26 25 7 36 26
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that country.


Year Song Peak chart positions Album
1988 "Put a Little Love in Your Heart" (with Al Green) 28 30 9 2 29 5 6 11 20 Scrooged soundtrack
1992 "Why" 5 5 34 6 7 17 1 6 10 12 Diva
"Precious" 23 83 14 37 28 49
"Walking on Broken Glass" 8 8 14 6 1 58 31 51
"Cold" 26 80
1993 "Little Bird" 3 3 49 1 7 38 7 34 29
"Love Song for a Vampire" Bram Stoker's Dracula soundtrack
1995 "No More I Love You's" 2 2 23 10 1 1 16 1 14 15 27 Medusa
"A Whiter Shade of Pale" 16 25 101 37 56 26 77
"Waiting in Vain" 31
"Something So Right" (with Paul Simon) 44
2003 "Pavement Cracks" 1 Bare
2004 "A Thousand Beautiful Things" 1
"Wonderful" 1
2007 "Dark Road" 58 39 10 45 Songs of Mass Destruction
"Sing" (with Various Artists) 161 29 18
2008 "Many Rivers to Cross" 80 47 The Annie Lennox Collection
2009 "Shining Light" 39
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that country.

Compilation albums

Year Album details Peak chart positions
2009 The Annie Lennox Collection
  • Released: 17 February 2009
  • Format: CD, CD/DVD, digital download
2 3 34 17 4 21 15 4 34 27 23 6
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that country.

See also Eurythmics discography


Lennox has received a variety of major awards during her career:

American Music Awards

Academy Awards

Grammy Awards

BRIT Awards

Golden Globe Awards

Other Awards

Other work


  1. ^ a b c d e "Desert Island Discs with Annie Lennox". Desert Island Discs. 11 May 2008. BBC. Radio 4. ((cite episode)): Unknown parameter |serieslink= ignored (|series-link= suggested) (help)
  2. ^ Annie Lennox Protests Carnage In Gaza by Tim Saunders, looktothestars.org, January 5, 2009 (accessed January 7, 2009)
  3. ^ Lennox has a pop at Livni over her campaign song, Marcus Dysch and Michal Levertov, Jewish Chronicle 29 January 2009
  4. ^ "Annie Lennox donation". The Scotsman. 29 June 2006. Retrieved 2006-08-07.
  5. ^ Annie Lennox: the biography, Bryony Sutherland and Lucy Ellis, 2002.
  6. ^ Annie Lennox: my baby's death inspired my charity work
  8. ^ Royal Academy of Music Bulletin, August 2006, p. 7
  9. ^ Newman, Melinda (23 June 2006). "Annie Lennox Gets Busy On New Album". Billboard.com. Retrieved 2006-06-29.
  10. ^ a b The Telegraph. "Annie Lennox: Diva singing through the darkness." 20 September 2007.
  11. ^ "SING website". ((cite news)): Cite has empty unknown parameter: |1= (help)
  12. ^ [1]. The Annie Lennox Collection. Retrieved 5 August 2008.
  13. ^ http://www.annielennox.com/news.php?newsItem=871 Official press statement Jan 2008
  14. ^ "Annie Lennox to Host Logo's Music Show", The Advocate, 2007-10-13, retrieved 2009-04-12
  15. ^ Romesburg, Don; Finlay, Jennifer (1997-08-19), "The events that shaped the under-30 mind", The Advocate, no. 739/740, p. 7, ISSN 0001-8996
  16. ^ http://www.bpi.co.uk
  17. ^ http://www.riaa.com
  18. ^ http://www.musikindustrie.de
  19. ^ "Peace core". The Herald (Glasgow). 25 November 1999. p. 16.
  20. ^ "Nobel Peace Prize Concert 2007". nobelpeaceprize.org. Retrieved 2007-12-11.