Annie Lennox and Eurythmics' 10 best songs ever, ranked

5 November 2020, 18:35

Annie Lennox in 1988
Annie Lennox in 1988. Picture: Getty

By Tom Eames

Annie Lennox is one of Scotland's greatest pop exports, both as a solo artist and as part of Eurythmics with Dave Stewart.

Annie has sold over 80 million records worldwide, and has even earned the title of the "most successful female British artist in UK music history".

Read more: Annie Lennox's daughter Lola is also a singer with an amazing voice

We've picked 15 of her greatest songs that makes a perfect Annie Lennox beginners' guide:

  1. Woud I Lie To You?

    This track sees Annie Lennox confronting a cheating lover, before she leaves him for good. It was conveyed in the music video, where actor Steven Bauer played the part of the boyfriend.

    It was arguably the first time that saw the group shift from their synthpop beginnings to an R&B/sound, and it worked perfectly.

  2. Little Bird

    Taken from Annie's debut album Diva, this song reached number three in the UK.

    Annie later performed this song during the 2012 Summer Olympics closing ceremony in London in 2012, and it was also used in the movie Striptease starring Demi Moore.

  3. Thorn in My Side

    This was Eurythmics' final UK top 10 single, reaching number 5 in 1986.

    David Stewart and Annie Lennox were previously a couple but broke up shortly after forming Eurythmics. In 1984, Lennox married for the first time, but divorced soon after. This song was inspired by that relationship.

    Stewart later explained: "On 'Thorn In My Side' Annie was channeling her anger and was so focused when she opened her mouth and delivered her cutting lyrics.

    "It was icy cold yet burning with passion. She carried on and did the whole song in one single take. She truly is one of the greatest singers of all time."

  4. No More 'I Love You''s

    This was originally a track by The Lover Speaks in 1986. Annie ended up covering it on her covers album Medusa in 1995, reaching number two in the UK.

    Asked why she chose to cover the song, she told The Independent: "When the song was released it made a mild murmur in the charts, but I don't think it ever really became a hit. There are quite a few songs floating around which should have touched the consciousness of the nation - they should have made their mark, and this is one of them.

    Read more: When Annie Lennox and David Bowie teamed up on a powerful duet on 'Under Pressure'

    "I thought, well, I might be sticking my neck out to do this, but I really wanted to give it another chance because it's a magnificent song. The lyrics are extraordinary, poetic and abstract - the perfect sort of vehicle for me."

  5. Dark Road

    Annie released this as the first single from her 2007 album Songs of Mass Destruction.

    It became the first single to have its video premiere on Amazon.com, signalling the start of a new streaming boom that would dominate a decade later.

  6. Here Comes the Rain Again

    Taken from Eurythmics' third album Touch, this electronic pop track reflected David Stewart's melancholic songwriting.

    "The whole song was about that undecided thing, like here comes depression, or here comes that downward spiral," he told Songfacts. "But then it goes, 'so talk to me like lovers do.'

    "It's the wandering in and out of melancholy, a dark beauty that sort of is like the rose that's when it's darkest unfolding and bloodred just before the garden, dies. And capturing that in kind of oblique statements and sentiments."

  7. Why

    This ballad was taken from her debut 1992 album Diva, and she later revealed that it was a personal song about going solo.

    She wasn't sure that she could write songs by herself without David A Stewart, or what her next step will be. It took her about 10 minutes to write. "It's weird," she said, "Some songs are like that, while others are not." It won the 1992 Ivor Novello Award for 'Best Song Musically and Lyrically'.

  8. Walking on Broken Glass

    Also taken from her debut album Diva, this was another top 20 hit in both the UK and US.

    Its video was based on the 1988 movie Dangerous Liaisons, with elaborate costumes inspired by the film.

    Actor John Malkovich, who starred in the movie, also appeared in the video, along with Hugh Laurie.

  9. There Must be an Angel (Playing with My Heart)

    Eurythmics released this from their fifth album Be Yourself Tonight in 1985, reaching number one in the UK.

    The song featured Stevie Wonder on the harmonica. When Annie and David Stewart went to Los Angeles to record the song, they weren't sure if or when Stevie would show up, as he had his own schedule.

    "It was getting very late and we were getting pessimistic whether he'd even turn up at all," Annie told Q. "Finally he showed up, and he was really an adorable person. He had these braids on his hair with beautiful gold beads, and when he plays he shakes his head so the beads make a loud noise. The man is a supreme musician, worth waiting for."

  10. Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)

    This Eurythmics track remains one of the most iconic synthpop tracks of its era. It was a huge hit worldwide, reaching number two in the UK and number one in the US.

    According to Annie, the song is about the unhappy time she felt after the breakup of first band The Tourists. She said: "[It's] basically me saying: 'Look at the state of us. How can it get worse? I was feeling very vulnerable. The song was an expression of how I felt: hopeless and nihilistic'."

    However, David Stewart thought the lyrics were too depressing, and added the 'hold your head up, moving on' line to make it more uplifting.