Category Archives: 2012 London Olympics

Year End Katy Kafes

What does a Duranie do when moving off the couch seems like a lot of work due to being ill?  This one listens to the year end Katy Kafes on DuranDuranMusic.com.  Katy Kafes are one of the true privileges of being a member of DDM, I suppose.  Although, highlights from each of them were posted on dd.com as each of the members wished Katy and the fan community a happy holiday season.  This blog will attempt to summarize the important or not-so-important points of each of them and give a brief review because that is what we do here, people! 

Simon:
I listened in order of how they were listed on the page.  I might assume that they were recorded in that same order, but I really have no idea.  In fact, the only one a definite date is known for is John’s, which was after his last book signing, but I’m getting ahead of myself.  In the beginning of the Kafe, Simon needed a refresher on what actually took place during 2012.  At first, I was critical of that until I realized that I had to think about what Duran did this year, too!  I could blame the bad head cold for my lack of memory, but it is probably just old age setting in.  Then, Simon discussed touring and some of the dates that were highlights for him.  Some of the shows he mentioned were the Switzerland date in January, Dubai, Latin America, Greece, Exit Festival in Serbia, Italy, France, the Olympics, and the US.  The part of that discussion that I really enjoyed hearing were the stories he told.  For example, he talked about skiing with Yasmin and Amber in Switzerland or how he hurt his knee in Latin America.  That is a lot more interesting to me than a list of fabulous dates.  When it came to the US dates, he talked about disappointing it was to Nick and the fans that the last of the dates had to be canceled.  He talked about he went ahead to Atlantic City and mingled with the fans.  Some of those fans were angry, which he felt was “inappropriate”.  I assume here that they were angry with Nick and/or the band rather than angry at the situation.  If that is true, I have to agree with him.  It wasn’t like Nick could control his health.  Sickness happens.  I know.  Outside of touring, he talked about Nick’s 50th birthday surprise with artwork from guests and other invited people.  He also discussed how he is enjoying his time off and being able to spend time sailing, being with the family, and being able to travel to India.  He also hopes a new Simon’s Reader will be coming soon.

Nick:
Like Simon’s Kafe, Nick began by discussing the tour and specific shows or places that were real highlights.  Some of Nick’s were South America, Exit Festival in Serbia, the Olympics, and the US.  He moved on to some of his traveling highlights, which included a few days in San Francisco where he enjoyed numerous art shows, including people like Cindy Sherman and Man Ray.  As someone who enjoys arts and art museums, I loved hearing about these shows.  I, too, would love to see the Cindy Sherman show, in particular.  Nick recommended looking online for some of these shows even if one is unable to travel to attend in person.  Good advice.  He also took the time to talk about Second Life and how those who are left have created and maintain a creative community.  I will have to take his word for it because it isn’t any place I go and spend time in.  He did say that he hoped to pop in before the end of the year, which is rapidly approaching.  Heads up, then, to all of you who do participate in Second Life!  A Kafe with Nick wouldn’t be normal if there was no discussion of movies.  He mentioned how he wants to see Lincoln (he totally should as I cannot recommend it enough) and Hitchcock but he did enjoy the latest Bond and the latest Tim Burton films.  Travel was part of his Kafe as well since he took a holiday to Bali, which doesn’t scream Nick Rhodes to me but cool.  He, apparently, wore shorts.  Other highlights for him for 2012 included visiting the Rio boat and his 50th Birthday Bash. 

Roger:
Roger’s Kafe began with a discussion on weather, snow, and children’s first snowfall as both Katy and Roger have young children.  This made me giggle since we have had so much snow here.  I have to admit that I still feel like a kid with the first season’s snowfall and this year was no exception.  Roger did not talk about many specific shows on tour when he began discussing his highlights for the year.  He did mention the Olympics and how big it was, especially since his whole family was there, watching.  The other show he said was Rome.  Now that the tour is over, he is glad to be home and spending time with his family.  He does look forward to going back into the studio with Mark Ronson in March and figures that he might be itching to get out on the road by summer.  Hmm…Outside of Duran, he has been DJing some, including with his son, James, which is good because James brings a different kind of taste in music.  He hopes to get to South America to DJ in maybe January.  There was a visit to Peru to visit family as well as a trip to Miami for vacation.  The other highlight that Roger mentioned was John’s book, which I thought was very nice and thoughtful of him.  He said that he thought the book was lovely and that John was lovely.  He is pleased that it did so well and that he is very happy for him.  🙂

John:
John’s Kafe was a little different from the rest as he had not only the band stuff to talk about but the book stuff as well.  He said that he thought it was a good year for the band.  Some highlights were the Olympics and the Exit Festival.  It wasn’t always easy, though, as he did feel overworked with both touring and writing the book.  Once the book was written, though, it was fun to put it together, pick out pictures and get ready to promote it.  This surprised the publishers who really only wanted him to go to London and New York.  John said that the Duran team had to fight for every city.  As for expectations, he tried not to have any as he had no idea how it would sell or how the fans would react.  Obviously, the results have been very satisfying and the in-person readings and signings have been great.  He is excited that it is getting translated into other languages.  That said, he is ready for a break.  In fact, he would find himself grumbling that the rest of the band had been on a break and that he needed his, too.  I can completely relate to this as I often find myself diving from one project to another without any real break.  He plans to spend his holiday in England and has a trip coming up, but didn’t say where.  He looks forward to getting back in the studio with Mark Ronson and thinks that they can build on what they did with All You Need Is Now, which sounds wonderful to my ears!!!  He hopes it will be out in early 2014.  At the end, he stated how this felt like a very successful year as many connections were made, which I have to agree.

Overall:
I always enjoy listening to these.  I feel like you can always gain an insight into the band members by what they say and I often feel like they can give subtle hints about what is happening behind the scenes.  This time, though, I didn’t sense any of that, which is a bummer. I am also bummed that they don’t give Dom a chance to do a Katy Kafe about his year.  I am looking forward to March when they get back into the studio.  Will Roger be right that they will be ready to hit the road by summer?  Will John’s prediction of early 2014 be off by 6 months?  A year?  Three?  I kid.  I only tease because I love.  I would obviously love the album by then and I would love dates by summer.  Who wouldn’t?!  To summarize, 2012 was a year of touring for the band.  They also traveled both on tour and on their own.  They spent time with their families and paid attention to art shows, books, and movies.  That wouldn’t be a bad year for any of us!  Now, I’m looking forward to 2013 and it sounds like they are, too!

-A

Olympics Reactions

Yesterday was the big day for Duran Duran as they represented England in the Olympics concert in Hyde Park. I was lucky enough to hear some of Duran’s performance through an Absolute Radio app on my phone as I drove to Minneapolis. Later, I had to chance to see some of the songs on youtube and checked to see reactions from Duranies who were there. Based on everything I heard, saw and read, Duran absolutely rocked it! I didn’t see one negative statement in regards to their performance, including from the press. Heck, I even read an article from the Daily Mail that indicated how good of a job Duran did!!!

In some ways, it seems like we have been talking about this performance forever! First, we had the rumors flying. Will Duran be playing? Won’t they? Then, the announcement came and all of the reactions that came with it. The media, for the most part, was horrified and thought Duran was a terrible choice. The fans, of course, were thrilled and very proud! Some of us were anxious as well as being pleased. After all, this was a big deal and the pressure would be on. We wanted so badly for Duran to perform well–not only to silence the critics but to also make the fans proud and maybe even get some new ones. Throughout Duran’s history, the big gigs have not always gone so well. I heard horror stories about some gig they played in front of Princess Diana. We all know about Live Aid and the bum note heard around the world. Even now, I feel like they don’t do so well during the important TV performances and I have heard that their shows in Birmingham are not as good as others due to anxiety or whatever. Perhaps, this kind of thing also has to do with expectations. Sometimes, fan expectations are so high that no one could meet those expectations. Anyway, whatever the deal is with important gigs, I worried. Would they prove the media right or would they show the world how fabulous they truly can be? Again, based on what I heard, saw and read, they absolutely proved their talent and skill!

Duran played for about 50 minutes for what I heard. They seemed to play a greatest hits set with a couple of new tracks. While I suspect that we all knew they would play a setlist like this, I still saw a few complaints about it. I’m sure we all understand why they would play songs that were familiar to most people. After all, it wasn’t a show just for fans. It was a showcase–to show what Duran has done. While we might be sick of those songs, casual fans and non-fans aren’t. Besides, it sounds like some of the more frequently played tracks did really well. For example, I heard that Ordinary World and Save a Prayer really captured attention. The fact that the audience, for the most part, joined in to sing the chorus to Save a Prayer shows that they really were able to connect with the audience. Good for them!

This show, of course, marked the last day of the European leg of the tour. Now, the band gets some time to relax before the last and final leg happens in the States. I hope that this Olympics show renewed the band some as I can imagine how tired they must be. A big victory like this one might energize them and us enough to finish this era of All You Need Is Now well!!!

-A

“I hate to bite the hand that feeds me”..how about that Olympic concert?

I have to be honest, I never thought I’d see or hear of Duran Duran playing in the Olympics.  It’s just not something I ever gave any real consideration, and not because I didn’t think they were worthy.  (They certainly are!)  I guess I chalk that up with being in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, in that I suppose it would be a nice gesture, but there’s something a little “establishment” about it all at the same time. Don’t get me wrong, I think it really is outstanding that they are playing on Friday in London, and they should be very proud of themselves. I certainly am a proud fan. I just never expected such things, in the same way that I never expected MTV to get off of their high horse and give them the credit they deserved for helping make that stupid station what it became (and then lost in a blaze of ignorance) for all music history.  When it became apparent that rumor was to be reality and the band was truly going to be playing at the Olympics, one of my first comments was “I’ll be damned.  That band really *does* matter to someone other than the fans. Who knew?”

One question that has been asked MANY times to Daily Duranie is if we know whether the concert is to be televised.  On one hand, I appreciate that so many think that Amanda and I are really that in the know.  I’m also completely humbled when I have to tell those people that I have absolutely no idea, but that I doubt it.  I wish I had better info, but I just don’t unless I myself do the research to find the answer.  So, research is what I have attempted to do.  I’ve searched online only to see that the concert is being held at what is called the Olympic Festival – and that the opening ceremonies will be broadcast on giant screens at what appears to be the same time as the ceremony itself.  That leads me to believe that either the concert will be shown at a different time, or it will not be televised at all.  I’ve checked my own  television stations, NBC (in America that is who is coordinating the Olympic broadcasts)….and I’ve found absolutely nothing.  A few fans are saying that the concert will be streaming online, but so far all I have found on that have been reports that the Olympic Ceremonies will be streaming, not the concert at Hyde Park.

More than a few fans have posted nastygrams to the band’s Facebook page, wondering why no information for viewing has been posted, and quite honestly some of them have been rather pointed in their assumptions that management isn’t doing their job or doesn’t care.  It is probably a little more rare than it should be that I find myself standing up for management. In this case – I feel it necessary.  To begin with, I highly doubt that the organizers for the concert have taken the trouble to let the band’s management know how fans in each country of the world can tune in to see the concert in their particular set of circumstances – if in fact the concert is even going to be shown, whether streaming online or otherwise.  Call me crazy, but I would imagine they have quite a bit going on at this moment in time.  It’s probably one of those things that might get mentioned at some point, but I feel pretty confident that if in fact the band’s management knew – they’d gladly share the information.  I also feel confident in saying that while yes, it would be nice to have management come out and say “Hey, we aren’t sure about broadcast information just yet” just so that way we all know and recognize there’s no conspiracy here….I suspect they’d have to be posting that nearly continually in order to satisfy Duran fans.  Sometimes it is just better to say nothing than continually say “We don’t know.  We STILL don’t know.” I try very hard to remind myself that while I am fairly good about managing a household (My kids might say otherwise….), I have never managed a band before. I don’t know what their job is like, and to be honest, I don’t want to know.  It makes my head hurt to even consider what it might be like at times. It’s not always easy to remind myself to hold my tongue or fingers when I think something should be done better, but I try.  Most of the time, I fail miserably.  I think we would all agree that it is far easier to sit on the sidelines and find fault than it probably is to be on the inside actually doing the work.

In the meantime, if you find good information on where we can all watch the concert – post it on our Daily Duranie Facebook page or tweet us – we’ll gladly repost it!!

Duran on Film!

Duran Duran has been one busy band lately!  At least, it feels that way to me as I think that I could spend all day, everyday just trying to keep up with the latest!  After all, the band is on tour (woohoo!!!) and has been doing much press, especially since they have a new DVD coming out (can’t wait!) and will be playing the Olympics in less than a month.  Thus, I think it might be good for all of us to spend part of our Saturday catching up with some of the latest video clips.  If I have missed some (and I probably did), please link them in a comment!  The more Duran clips, the better! 

Daybreak in the UK on June 28, 2012:

I’ll keep my comments brief so that you all just enjoy the clips but I do have to comment on a few things.  First, every time I see a clip of the DVD, I swear I get all excited all over again!  Those UK shows were something special and if the DVD can capture 10% of that, we are all in for a treat!  Second, hearing Simon tell the story of his vocal problem of last year just makes me appreciate that he did regain the use of his voice.  It amazes me how removing himself from the focus of getting better helped.  That is advice we should all remember when facing problems in our own lives.  Lastly, I got a kick of Roger’s worry that some thing horrible will happen before every show.  This sentiment sure shows how human he is.  🙂

CNN on June 29, 2012:

Here’s my advice to Simon:  No more tweeting after you have been drinking!  People pay attention to what you say and will ask you about it!  As for the interview, I liked how the interviewer used Girl Panic to ask Duran about whether they plan to keep making music!  Research is a good thing!

Fuse TV Part 1 on June 28, 2012:

I absolutely adore hearing stories like these!  Two of them I had not heard before!

Part 2:

My response to Roger in this one:  I sure hope I can sense the chemistry between band members when watching the DVD!  ;D  Also, I have to agree with Simon that their audience isn’t ready or old enough to be content with a mid or low tempo performance. 

Press Conference in Poland from June 25, 2012:

While there was a lot of discussion surrounding football (soccer for us Americans), I am sure that I’m not the only one who heard that Duran plans to work with Mark Ronson again!  According to Nick, the plan is to start writing in February and to bring Mark in during the early summer of next year.  Obviously, as a huge fan of AYNIN, I couldn’t be more thrilled with this information!  On a deeper level, I, sometimes, have to take a step back and realize how lucky we are that this band we love is continuing to tour, to make new music.  We are truly lucky.

I hope that I’m caught up with the latest news in Duranland and I hope I helped you as well!  Can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings!

-A

Anxious for What Comes Next!

 It seems to me that there is much to look forward to in Duranland.  Right now, we are in a bit of a quiet period (which, personally, works for me as my life is insane right now), but there is much to anticipate!  Duranies have gotten pretty used to Durantime and pretty used to long stretches of time when nothing much seems to be happening in Duranland.  This is one of those times.  Normally, when there is a bit of downtime, I notice more drama between fans.  I haven’t seen a ton lately.  Is that because there really isn’t much or because I have no time to check in and notice?  Anyway, if there really isn’t drama, is that because we all know that this downtime is short lived?  I don’t know.  It doesn’t matter.  What does matter is that we do have many, many things to look forward to.  Now, I realize that not every fan in every corner of the world will get to enjoy as much as others but I always get excited that Duran is doing something!  Let’s recap what’s coming!

First, Duran Duran have announced an appearance on Good Morning America here in the States on June 18th.  According to the band’s official website, this will be a performance.  It is an interesting choice since Duran isn’t doing anything in the States until August.  I can’t imagine that it will be to advertise a new single.  It is also right before the tour in Europe starts.  While I may not understand the point of it, I’m still excited.  It will be the first Monday I won’t be at work for the summer so I can watch it live.  I’m sure that Rhonda and I will comment on it.  I hope that everyone outside of the States will get a chance to watch it, somehow. 

Second, Duran starts their tour of Europe a week after that on June 25th.  I realize that some of their originally scheduled shows were never re-scheduled, which has got to be upsetting.  Nonetheless, I still look forward to the tour.  No, it isn’t because I’m going to any shows but I do like to hear from others who have shows!  I get excited for others!  Plus, of course, in this day and age, I get to see clips via places like youtube.  I hope that everyone who is going to a show(s) reports in and tells us all about it!  Of course, as part of this European tour, Duran will be playing at the Olympics.  Again, I’m not sure what I will get to actually watch.  I’m excited for the band, no matter what/how much I get to see.  🙂 

Third, A Diamond in the Mind live DVD is also being released during the summer.  I SO look forward to this!  I will get to re-live the fabulous UK shows of last winter!  This will also get me even more excited for the tour in August.  Of course, like Good Morning America and the Olympics (if we get a chance to see the performance), Rhonda and I will review it!  By this time, we better have our plans set for the tour in August!  Here’s a hint, DDHQ, we would really like to get things situated with our shows, but it is hard to do when we can’t buy tickets for Atlanta yet!  Of course, we won’t be able to go to all of the shows so we will need to hear from others about their shows!

Lastly, the fall will bring the convention in the UK.  Rhonda and I are also looking forward to that!  We will get to see friends and a city that we have come to really enjoy!  I suspect that we will take some time for a real Duran tour then.  I’m hearing rumors about a mini-bus, champagne and more!  Can you just picture it now?  A mini-bus full of Duranies driving around Birmingham?  I can’t wait!!!  The fall will also bring John Taylor’s book and book tour!  Obviously, I’m hoping for a stop in Chicago in order to be able to go see him without too much cost and without taking too much time from work.  It will also provide more for us to review!  The new year promises a return to the studio for the band based on what I have heard and read, which means that we have another Duran album to look forward to at some point. 

Overall, there is a ton of stuff to look forward to in Duranland!  It is good to remember all that is coming!  Some days, some times don’t need heavy deep subjects.  On those days, we all could benefit from looking forward to the future!  It is good for all of us to be excited about what is coming!!!  It is a good day and time to be a Duranie!

-A

The best part of my week

I’ll bet you all were looking for a retort to a certain follow-up blog by a music journalist today, weren’t you?

I could postulate the differences between strongly disagreeing and threatening.  I could comment on what I really believe John meant by his CLEARLY rhetorical question he tweeted the other day.  I could mention that for as many thinly veiled threats of physical violence that have been tweeted or posted, there have been many, many more flat out rude comments made about all Duran Duran fans, not to mention the band themselves. I could also offhandedly say that for what appears to be every blog written as a derogatory slant against the band’s chosen appearance for the Olympic opening concert there was one written…by the same writer no less…practically gushing in wild fan-like abandon for their appearance at SXSW last year. But I won’t. There comes a moment when you realize no more can or should be said, and that moment for me is right now.

Instead, I will share with you what has been the highlight of my week in every way.  Yesterday I received Dom Brown’s Blue to Brown CD in my mailbox. I’ve been awaiting it’s arrival since I ordered it, and I have to tell you – I even smiled because I saw that no other than Martha Riley posted it to me. If that’s not a family operation going on in the Brown household, I don’t know what. I laugh because there are moments when even my husband has me running his secretarial errands when he’s overseas, so I get it. We do what must be done. I popped the CD into my car stereo as I went on my way to pick up my oldest from school.

I won’t do a full review here because I want Amanda to have the chance to listen to her copy before we both comment, but for those of you who haven’t bought a copy or haven’t heard yours yet, I’ll tell you something: you’re in for a treat.

Truth be told, I am no fan of the blues. I’m really not. I had to take two classes that covered the blues when I was in college – and both were rock music history classes. I tried hard to understand the blues, I listened with an open mind and tried to feel it all and I just never connected. I really wanted to support Dom and his dad on this project – even if just by purchasing a CD – because I think it’s very special. I am truly an emotional sap right now, but the fact is he is SO lucky to be able to work with his dad. Those are moments you just can’t get back after your parents are gone, and for that reason alone I was determined to give this CD a real shot and listen with not just my ears, but my heart.

Ok, so I’m apologizing right now for the continued sap. It’s a tough time for me right now and I promise that after May 13, I’ll be back to my normal sarcastic self.

As I said, I promise not to review the whole CD. The one thing (well, maybe a few things) I’ll say is that this is your opportunity to really hear what Dom can do with a guitar. There were moments when his playing nearly moved me to tears, and not just because he’s a nice guy.  He can really play and Duran Duran should be ashamed of themselves for not featuring him more often or making him sign a contact in blood that he will be a lifetime member. (blood too extreme maybe?!?)  Another thing I will say is that I sat with a smile on my face the entire time.  Maybe it was because I knew it was his dad singing and that made it special.  Maybe it was because Anna Ross also does back up – beautifully, I might add.  Or maybe it’s just because the CD is just so easy to listen to and not the least bit overdone.

One song in particular did “it” for me and that was Please, Please. This song is a gem and is as much that traditional American blues/50’s rock & roll as I’ve ever heard.  For me, it was a bit of a trip down memory lane because I could picture my mom and dad dancing in our living room as I was a kid. I can remember hearing an Elvis record or something similar be put on the console tv/stereo set up we had when I was really little, and I’d wander in there to see my parents slow dancing to the music. I can remember giggling at the sight of them and my parents would smile and invite me “in” to dance with them. I was probably no more than four at the time, and I always wondered why my dad loved that music so much. He never really got into music beyond the likes of Elvis and possibly the Beach Boys (I still have to thank he and my mom for the brilliance behind naming me after one of their songs…which is exactly why my children are not named Rio, Arcadia or JT.)  Interestingly enough now I get it: he was a fan of the blues.

Make no mistake, this is not Duran Duran. If you’re thinking you’re going to hear Rio or anything remotely close to Save a Prayer – you will be disappointed. Moreover, this isn’t Between the Lines. (Dom’s most recent solo album) This is not rock. It’s the blues. You have to listen with your heart as much as you do with your mind. That’s the real key here, and I think it probably took this album to make me see what I’d been missing in my previous attempts to appreciate the blues. I only listened with my ears and my head.

Truly the best part of my week was spent listening to that album!

-R

I light my torch and wave it…

There are days when it is really tough to be a fan.

Then there are more days when it is really tough to follow one’s own advice.

For me, yesterday was a little bit of both. I’m somewhat ashamed to admit that I got caught up in being on the defensive for Duran Duran when I probably should have shut the screen on my laptop and walked away. Yesterday could have been a productive cleaning day for me here in the house, but instead I felt as though I needed to clean up the mess left behind by more than one blogger, journalist and even an “anti-fan” or two.

I’ve blogged about how personal the music is. I’ve blogged about how the line between the band and fan gets somewhat blurred just because the music has played such a key role during various points in our lives. Their victories as a band feel very much like our victories as fans. Sometimes it’s incredibly difficult to separate the two, even when we know we must.  Yesterday was in fact one of those days for me, and I would imagine it was very much that way for many of our readers.

I kept waiting for the news to get better yesterday. I was waiting patiently for someone to blog about how fantastic it was that the band was involved with the Olympics, and that they were in fact deserving. Aside from a wayward Duran fan or two – I really didn’t see much along those lines. In fairness, inflammatory comments tend to “sell” blogs. It gets them read by many people. Those people tend to comment, and then post links for their friends to also read and comment. Next thing you know, you’ve got page views reaching 50,000 or more.  It happens. Let’s face it, after reading a wonderful review or two from a show, I don’t tend to keep reading. No need really. However, yesterday I made damn certain to read every last blog on the subject of the Olympics, becoming more and more incensed with each click of the mouse. I would see fellow fans posting links to these blogs and articles, trying to get the attention of other fans. It was the talk of the entire day on Twitter, and as much as I knew I should just get up and walk away – it was like the train wreck I could not move away from.  Nothing else got done, that is for sure, and at the end of the day I felt like I’d fought a war, and completely lost.

I’m really not sure why I was so surprised to see the backlash and outcry from the announcement that Duran Duran was playing the Olympics. I think it’s been this way, this sort of battle for the band since it’s inception. I suppose my own frustration and anger comes from just being sick of defending them. It’s as though the past thirty years has counted for absolutely nothing. No matter how much they’ve accomplished the playing field gets leveled to the Girls on Film video, Rio, Hungry Like the Wolf and the fact that they wore makeup and frilly tops. It’s disgusting. I can’t count how many times I saw the words “irrelevant” yesterday, or “has beens”.  Or my personal favorite, “Their fans still believe it’s still 1984”. It felt like a slap to MY face, and I’m not even in the damn band.  Makes me wonder how they weather this kind of thing on a daily basis. I have to admit, if it were like this every day I’d hide in a hole somewhere and never read a single paper!

It took until pretty late in the day for the news to start making it’s way into blogs and news items coming from the US, and so today I’m starting to see and read some opinion pieces on the subject.  So far, I have to say that I’m seeing more optimism than I did yesterday.  That alone is fascinating to me, given that from what I could see yesterday – their fellow English were harder on them than anyone else.  It’s an interesting world we live in.

Bottom line for me is that I’m very proud of the band. It’s not as though the Olympics are held every year, or that they are held in London each time. This may be the only time the Olympics are held in that city during my lifetime, and I am extremely proud that the band I’ve loved all of these years have been highlighted to be a part of a showcase they are bringing to the rest of the world.  The critics may have their say, and perhaps some “anti-fans” out there feel as though they are just a “token band”.   After it is all said and done, it’s going to be the band and their fans left behind with this memory carried like a torch in our hands, just the way it has always been, and that’s good enough for me.

-R

The Olympics!!!

It really isn’t every day that I wake up to hearing that Duran Duran will be playing the Summer Olympic games Opening Ceremony Concert.  This is fantastic news for Duran fans, and well deserved for the band.  Of course, we fans know this – it’s one of the many reasons we have supported the band for over thirty years now.  We understand that their music goes well beyond Rio and Girls on Film.  We know the band is about far more than champagne and yachts (although both things are good!).  We recognize just how far reaching their talent is as a band, and we know that they have proven themselves to be consistently capable.  They are innovative, willing to take artistic risk, and definitely not nearly as “stuck in the 80’s” as perhaps many of their fans might be. Admit it. Embrace it. I was proud to hear that the announcement had been made regarding the concert, and thrilled to see that the band was finally getting some good press.

Naturally, my joy was rather short lived when I began to read the Tweets (big mistake) and some of the news articles that have come out of the announcement. So far, none have been worse than what I read in The Telegraph by Lucy Jones. I simply refuse to post the link because any more traffic to her pathetic blathering is too much. I would actually dare her to name more than maybe 5 Duran Duran songs she’s ever really heard, because from reading her drivel, it’s pretty clear she knows next to nothing about any of the bands mentioned in the lineup. She seems to pride herself on being able to name a few of the more recent hipster bands, and well, if that’s what she needs to hang her hat on, then good on her. What Ms. Jones fails to acknowledge is that while yes, Duran Duran did have the majority of their hits in the 1980’s – they were and still are the biggest and brightest musical act to come out of the entire UK since The Beatles. It’s not necessary to be a big fan of the band to at least acknowledge what they’ve accomplished over the years, and that’s really all anyone – including myself – is asking.

My original intention with the blog was to refute every last one of the negative statements out there, and the reality is – I probably could write several thesis’ denying every single one of the claims that other bloggers and self-proclaimed journalists have made, but what good would that really do? Probably none. People like what they like, and while it might anger us, their opinion is just that – opinion. The fact is, while the volume of the negativity might feel especially loud today – it’s never stopped the band before, nor should it stop us, the fans.  We have every right to be proud of what the band has accomplished.  We should take a moment to send the band a congratulatory tweet, post an encouraging comment on their Facebook page, and even post the news to our friends on our own pages. Be proud, be supportive – it’s what we do best!

However, if you feel the need to prove to the world that the band really is an INTERNATIONAL treasure – I welcome that. Here’s a link to take you to a news article in The Telegraph, along with a poll about the band performing at the Olympics.  I encourage you to take the poll. Vote early, vote often.

-R

The Olympics…will they or won’t they??

We never do this.  We’re a one-blog-a-day-whether-we-need-it-or-not operation.  So, for Rhonda to be writing a second blog for the day…you need to know that this is very unofficial, yet certainly interesting breaking news.

The France show has been moved to July 23rd.  This isn’t breaking news, but still worth noting. No reason was given, and in the world of Duranie, that gives us plenty of reason to speculate…which we did.  We also know that Ronson is doing some of the music in the opening ceremony of the Olympics, set in London this summer. The date of the Opening Ceremony?  July 27th… the original date of the Carcassonne show. It isn’t difficult to see where I’m headed here…

If that weren’t enough, there have been several comments and postings all over the internet about fans receiving emails from band administration, and they were openly told that the band would be playing the Olympic Opening Ceremony. No word as to whether fans were told to keep this information quiet.  Think back to December when the fan community heard that the UK people might be in for a surprise or two, and the information seems even more solid.  Is it true?!  We will soon see.

On one hand, we all can and should be thrilled if this rumor holds true.  The entire world will be watching the Olympics, and our band will be there properly representing.  I know I will be watching.

On the other hand, once again the fans are left to speculate and find information on their own.  By this time, we’ve all gotten quite good.  We’re not the amateurs we were at the age of eleven or twelve.  Once again today our news comes not from the people who should be providing such information but from one another, collectively working together for the greater good of the community at large. Perhaps the band was asked to keep the appearance secret.  Perhaps the Olympic Committee wishes to do their own promotion work and surprise the world with what they’ve got planned.  This is fairly commonplace – most countries want to keep plans for their shining opening ceremony moments quiet.  Fair enough.  I have it on reasonably good authority that the appearance is not just rumor, but until the band confirms – I have no choice but to characterize it as rumor.  (this would be a great time for the band to make the announcement, by the way!)

The problem comes down to the dissemination of information.  The entire issue and rumor mill could have been averted had someone thought to come up with a decent reason for moving the Carcassonne show.  Even an apology would have been acceptable.  However, none of that was done.  The information was first tweeted, then put on Facebook, and to this writing – there is still no information given on duranduran.com regarding the change to the Carcassonne show unless it is buried deep within the website.  It certainly is not in the News section.  A mere oversight?  Hard to say.

Several days ago, Amanda ran a blog on Where to find the news.  I linked it so if you haven’t read it yet, here’s the chance to catch up.  It’s bewildering to me as to why, after thirty some years in the business, the band and particularly their management still do not have any idea how to handle information.  Part of me believes that the band has never thought they needed to explain themselves, and perhaps that is true.  Back when we were ten, twelve and even fourteen – we were easy to appease. A smile, an interview, a pinup, and we were good.  No apologies necessary.  Back in those days, we probably didn’t even realize what was going on behind the scenes or what changes were taking place.  Well, this is 2012.  The same rules simply do not apply.  We’re far older, far more resourceful, and far more willing to ask the tough questions and expect a reasonable answer. Sure, one can argue that this is a transactional relationship – not a two way street.  I would simply reply that after thirty years, perhaps a little more humility is in order all the way around.

The real “news” here isn’t necessarily the unsubstantiated rumor of an appearance in the Opening Ceremony, although the idea is exciting and we’re hoping it’s true.  It’s the lack of news. The lack of notice. The lack of regularity.  Rumors like this are exactly what happens when the fans are left to their own devices. I know fans can be a gigantic pain in the side of management.  I know that rumors like this probably drive them crazy.  They drive me crazy too. That is something we can all agree on.

-R