Category Archives: appearances

Simon at the 2019 BCA Cultural Summit

(Obviously, Amanda and I cannot be everywhere, so in this case, we called out to the internet for help in covering such a wonderful event! Lucky for us, we had a couple of wonderful Duran fans willing to be our special “on the scene” correspondents! We are featuring Kathy’s today, and hopefully another later in the week. THANK YOU!!) -R

By Kathy Diaz

Thursday, May 23 was here! For me, this meant missing one day of work and driving two-and-a-half hours to Melbourne, Florida to see Simon give a talk at a luncheon for the Cultural Summit.  For some reason I wasn’t as excited for this as I was for the Duran Duran show in Miami.

 I mean, it was Simon! If you don’t know me, you must know that I’m completely obsessed with this man, so when I heard the news that he was coming to Florida I was ready to leave everything behind and go see him.

I woke up that day at 7AM and for me, this was too early. So, I took my time getting ready. Before I knew it, it was already 9AM and I was expecting to leave at 8:30AM. So, I got there a bit later than I’d planned. Thankfully, I had no problem finding the ballroom where the luncheon was taking place. I walked in and found a decent seat where I would see Simon clearly.

I was pleased to find out that the place was smaller than I thought, so even if you were all the way on the back, you were going to be able to see Simon. At 12:00PM, they started serving the lunch: for me it was chicken breast, mashed potatoes and vegetables…oh, and carrot cake, which was delicious.

Someone spoke before Simon, but he promised to be brief as he knew we were all there for Mr. Le Bon. He kept his promise and only talked for about 15 minutes. Just before 1PM, Simon made his entrance. That’s when the excitement hit me! Seeing Simon making his entrance to the same room where I sat felt surreal.

The man that I am used to seeing on the screen of my computer was there in the same room! He probably even looked at me! I’m going to sound like a naive teenage girl but, when Simon was talking, I felt he was looking directly at me. Please, let me live my dream.

The interview couldn’t have been better. Simon—as always—was very funny and humble. There was even a chance for the fans to ask him questions, which I didn’t expect. A lot of people kept raising their hands to ask questions, and I wanted to do it, but I couldn’t. I’m way too shy, and I would have to stand up and ask my question in front of him and other 400 people. Nope, I just couldn’t do it. Regardless, I am very happy for the brave ones who stood up and asked their questions.

Some of my favorites were the fan who told Simon she met him and Yasmin in 1987, and she still had the photos of that amazing experience. Simon even had her join him on stage and show the pictures to him.

There was a guy who also showed Simon his DD tattoos, which Simon thought was a rarity. 

Additionally, Greg Pallone, the reporter who was doing the interview, asked the audience who was the youngest fan. For a moment, I thought it could have been me (I’m 32) and the everyone around me seemed to be in their late 40’s or early 50’s. However, there was actually a 9-year-old girl in the audience named Rio. She was the luckiest fan that day. Not only did she have the chance to ask Simon a about his inspiration for the song, but she also got a picture with him, which is now all over the internet.

In total, the conversation lasted for about an hour. Simon talked about fashion, music, and even his family.  One of the things I learned is that Simon recently showed his daughters the documentary of Sing Blue Silver, and they thought he was annoying. 

Even though my excitement in the hours prior to Simon’s appearance wasn’t quite as intense as it might be before a gig, this was still an experience that I will never forget.  A live show is fun and exciting, but in these types of events, you can see more of the real person behind the artist. The conversation tends to be more intimate, and overall it is a great way for the artist to connect with fans on a personal level.

I wanted to meet Simon after the event and even waited for him outside, but I didn’t get lucky this time. However, being there in that room listening to him talk to us was more than enough for me. It was well-worth the money, lost wages, and long drive. I really hope they keep doing events like this!

Kathy Diaz is a fairly new Duranie, just discovering her obsession last year! She recently moved to Miami from Puerto Rico. She is also fan of Harry Potter, Doctor Who, and basically everything and anything that is British. You can follow her on Twitter: @KathyDi86. We invite you to check out her own Duran Duran blog at theretroarena.blogspot.com.

Simon at BCA Luncheon

Teaching is an interesting gig in that some aspects of the job that I like are also the ones that can frustrate the heck out of me. I was reminded of one of those this week. My job is an intense one in that I’m always busy and there is always way more than needs to get done. This allows for days to fly by. At the same token, it rarely allows me to check in with the rest of the world and when I do, it involves quick glances or short replies. I don’t have the time or the focus to dive into something happening in the world or in Duranland. While I’m glad that my work days don’t drag, I am sad that I miss out on things, particularly when it comes to fandom.

This week, Simon participated in a luncheon as part of the 2019 Cultural Summit, an event put on by the Brevard Cultural Alliance (BCA), which is ” the professional organization representing the arts and cultural sector on Florida’s Space Coast.” The goal of the organization is as follows: Brevard Cultural Alliance provides artist residencies in numerous public schools, has a thriving Art in Public Places temporary exhibitions program, helps buildcollaborative working groups on issues of importance to the sector, supports the development of cultural destination, and holds capacity-building workshops for artists and cultural organizations. BCA administers the County Community Cultural Grant program on behalf of the Brevard County Board of County Commissioners. BCA and the Space Coast Office of Tourism coordinate promotion of events for participating organizations through the Cultural Marketing Initiative. BCA promotes area artists, arts organizations and arts and cultural events to our residents and our visitors.” Simon’s luncheon was a live interview where they advertised that “he’ll reflect on the past, present, and future of Duran Duran, of the music industry, and what success as an artist means.”

This all sounds fascinating to me, especially since people could buy tickets to attend. The idea reminds me a bit of John’s book talks and readings in which fans could buy tickets to hear him read parts of the book and then to also ask questions. I was lucky enough to attend one of those so I can imagine how awesome it must have been for those fans who attended this. (I know Rhonda said something on Twitter about how much we would love anyone who actually attended share their experience via a guest blog. Let me repeat the offer. We would love to from someone there what it was really like!) So, what have I seen about this event? Since I’m playing catch up here, I’ll do my best to share what I could find out about it.

In my search, the first place I looked was at the band’s social media. Both Facebook and Twitter had some photos and video clips. In one of the clips, Simon shared one experience on MTV in which they were joined by Keith Haring, a famous artist in the 1980s. I remember seeing that clip somewhere, sometime. I tried to find it on YouTube with no luck. That said, I remember the first time I saw it how cool I thought it was that this artist was working at the same time that Simon (and I think Nick) were talking. I loved how Duran always had connections to visual artists like Keith, Andy Warhol and more. Simon’s appearance at BCA reminds me that the band’s love of art and connection to it remains strong.

Another video clip focused on how songs really help to connect to other people. In some cases, it might let people know that they are not alone and in others it sheds light into something that others might be going through. I know that this connection that Simon spoke to is what really matters to me. I fall in love with songs when I find a connection to them. Maybe I’m a Duranie for this reason–maybe I have felt a personal, emotional connection to more of their songs than anyone else or the connection is simply stronger with Duran’s music. I think back to the first few listens of Paper Gods. It wasn’t until I found myself relating to some of the lyrics that I really liked the album.

Of course, there was some other press about this luncheon besides what was shared by DDHQ. One article was in Florida Today, which you can read for yourself here. It mentioned a few fans, including ones who met Simon decades ago, named a daughter Rio, held up lots of Rio album covers and more. Simon touched on the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame, studio work and that he hopes that Duran’s music will just be there. (I think it is safe to say that for many of us it will be. Always.) I appreciated both the recognition of the fans as I always believe that we are a big part of the story but I loved what Simon said about the music.

From what I saw, heard and read, this was a pretty magical experience for those in attendance. Simon seemed charming, personable and open from the video clips I saw. I recommend seeking out the band’s social media as well as people who attended social media. It seems to me that when band members do this type of thing the fans just eat it up. We want to see the band members in a different setting. People would like to ask questions directly. The band members don’t seem untouchable then but relatable, human. More importantly, it works to bring a stronger connection with the fans to the band member but also between fans as I saw lots of fans talking and connecting afterwards on social media. This is the type of thing that keeps fandom going, in my opinion. Good for Simon for participating and good for the fans who attended.

-A

I’ve Seen You on TV

Yesterday, as I watched the snow falling, I graded, hoping to get caught up. (No, I did not include a typo in that first sentence. It snowed here yesterday. Yes, it is almost May.) I wanted to finish my grading for a couple of reasons. Progress reports are due on Wednesday. More importantly than that, I wanted to be able to watch the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony without feeling guilty.

There is something special about seeing Duran Duran on TV and there always has been. I remember as a kid getting so excited to see the band on TV. Before we had a VCR, I had to just hope that whatever they were on I would be able to see it. It had to be before my bedtime (gosh I was so young!) but also when I didn’t have to fight my siblings and the parents for the family TV. This was always a struggle but when I was successful, there was nothing better. One appearance from childhood that sticks out is this one from the Bob Hope Birthday Special:

From what I remember, I won the TV (we only had one in color with cable) because my grandma was there and she liked Bob Hope. In fact, she would have taken the time to retell the story for the 10th time or more about seeing Bob Hope perform in person decades earlier.

Sometimes, I didn’t know about a TV appearance but was lucky enough to catch it by changing the channels. Here are two that worked out that way:

Of course, there were times that I knew that Duran was going to be on TV but I couldn’t watch. I felt like someone was trying to torture me when this happened as a kid. Why were my parents so mean, I wondered. The biggest example of this was Live Aid in July 1985. My family was in the process of moving and on that Saturday we were to drive to our new house to drop off some needed items for my dad who was staying there during the week. I have a very clear memory of me begging my mom to let me stay with my best friend as she folded sheets that were going to the new house. No matter how many reasons I gave for needing to stay, she wasn’t having it. No, my help would be needed. Great…That said, we returned home in the evening and I managed to get back in time to see both Power Station and Duran! Even though I didn’t miss any of it, I pouted the entire day and refused to join the family for the Chinese takeout.

Another example of a Duran appearance that I was not able to watch was As the Lights Go Down. In this case, it wasn’t because my parents had plans for me. No, it had to do with the fact that it was airing on Cinemax, a cable channel that we definitely did not have. So what did I do? I did what must have been done and I begged my cousins to record it for me. They agreed but when they returned the videotape, they had missed some songs. I was so annoyed but I knew that I didn’t have the right to be. After all, they had done me a favor. Imagine how excited I was when the concert was included in one of the Seven and the Ragged Tiger special reissued box sets. Now, the band has been releasing some of the songs from it on YouTube after this year’s RSD special vinyl released of it. Here are the tracks they have released so far:

On that note, I might spend a little bit more time today watching some good Duran Duran clips. After all, what gets better than that?!

-A

Stones and Glass houses: DD to play BraVo Awards in Russia

In what has got to be one of the shortest lead times to #Durantime ever – Duran Duran announced today that they will be performing at the International Professional Music awards – the “BraVo” in Moscow, Russia on March 10th.

For those of you who are saying “Wait, what’s the date today?”. It is March 5th.

When I saw the announcement, I was a bit curious, if not dubious. I’ve never heard of the BraVo awards. Aside from understanding that they take place in Russia, I knew nothing.

I looked at the awards website, and this is the first BraVo Awards, which explains why I’d never heard of it before. It was difficult to read the site due to some rather unfortunate banner placements, but it sounds like the awards are supposed to celebrate the musical “elite” from virtually everywhere in the world, other than America and probably Canada, and maybe Mexico. The site claims that the event will be attended by representatives of world music and film industry, media executives, cultural and business elite, ambassadors of partner countries, and famous celebrities. Sounds pretty fancy!

Let’s face facts – this is in Russia. Inevitably, there are always going to be concerns with that. Is it really just about getting paid?  For that matter, are the band being paid for this gig or are they also being honored? Does anyone know?

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: the band has the right to make money. I support that 100%. Artists can and SHOULD be allowed to support themselves through their art. Yeah, Duran Duran have made millions off of their music. Yep, they get paid to play, whether private gigs or on tour. They always have in one way or another. That’s not a crime and we need to stop acting like it is. Art isn’t free. It SHOULDN’T EVER be free. Art is the product of someone’s blood, sweat and tears, it isn’t free. Let’s get that out-of-the-way right off of the top. I believe the band has the right to make a living, even if they are making far more than I could ever hope to earn myself.

Is this really just about making a living, or is this about where they’re being paid, and by whom? Let’s face it, Russia isn’t known for being the greatest advocate or proponent of human rights in the world. Their government has been known to meddle in an election or two, as well.  It is difficult to support the idea of playing in a country that has that kind of track record, isn’t it?

Yet, I need look no farther than my own country as I consider my own feelings on the subject.  Right now, the President in my country is someone who is not well-liked around the world. Some might say that he has a pretty dismal view of human rights – to say the least, I might add. Others might say he is on the cusp of impeachment, insisting that he is one step away from being thrown in prison. Or maybe to some he already is a criminal. Should Duran Duran stop playing shows here in the USA until our President changes? Some of you reading might very well be saying yes.

Those of you who are saying the band shouldn’t play in Russia because of their government might also be saying the band shouldn’t play here in the USA because of the views of our own.

It feels a bit like a slippery slope when discussing where the band should or should not play based on the convictions of a country’s government. I remember a Katy Kafe where the subject of where the band would be willing to play was discussed with Simon. I don’t have the exact quote, but he basically said they’d play anywhere unless there was a specific regime in power somewhere that the band didn’t agree with. I’ve come to realize that the decision, in many cases, just can’t be that black and white.  The country where I live is far from perfect. The band has played here numerous times for award shows, even thought I am fairly certain they haven’t always agreed with our government, or its stance on human rights, including LGBTQ rights and immigrant rights. The band has come here and played for the elite in our music, film and fashion business in the same way they will on March 10th for Russia, or anywhere else in the world they decide, for that matter.

I’m just not sure about throwing stones while sitting in this glass house.

-R

 

Birmingham Music Awards

John Taylor fans, do not despair. I know it has been a tough year so far…given that it’s what….almost March and yet it feels like it should already be April at the very least! Winter will truly be over on May 2nd, when JT will appear at the Birmingham Music Awards to present the Rising Star Award.

The Birmingham Music Awards will celebrate young artists from the Midlands, according to expressandstar.com. Given that Birmingham was the birthplace of Duran Duran, having John present seems like a given.  We’ve all listened to Katy Kafes where John has mentioned a new artist or two that he’s listening to, and I don’t think I’m alone when I say that nine times out of ten, I will write down the name and go have a listen for myself.  Even Nick says he relies on John to keep him up to date (with musical preferences).

I’ve been to Birmingham a couple of times, and the city has a wonderful vibrance. Duran Duran is hugely representative of the importance that music brings to the culture of Birmingham and the Midlands area, something that I take pride in as a fan of both the band AND the city. If I could manage a trip there again, I would go in a heartbeat.

There are tickets available for the May 2nd event at the Glee Club, so those of you who are local and can go, definitely should! Send my best to Mr. Taylor, and take plenty of photos!

-R

John to appear at Bass Player Live 2016

I know that by now, there are Duranies out there practically salivating at the very thought of another show date.

I wish I had that for you, but instead….I do have an appearance to mention! John Taylor is going to be appearing at Bass Player Live in Los Angeles, California at SIR Studios on Sunset Boulevard.  Apparently, he is going to participate in a live clinic interview. Duranies – grab your bass guitars and get some tickets!!

There are a number of highly renown bassists appearing at this years Bass Player Live, as well as an all-star concert to be held on the night of Saturday October 22 at the Musicians Institute.  Slated to appear include Billy Sheehan, Tim Bogert,  Randy Jackson,  dUg Pinnick, Rex Brown, Mike Elizondo, Gerald Veasley and many more.

If you’re interested, I’d jump on getting those tickets, (and probably learning how to play bass….just so you’ll fit in, right?)  The event sounds like it could be a lot of fun and I would imagine that I’ll see some pictures from plenty of Duranies in attendance.

SIR Studio day pass for Saturday OR Sunday – $37.50 (plus fees)

SIR Studios Saturday and Sunday day pass + concert – $57.50 (plus fees)

Both types of passes come with a free subscription to Bass Player Magazine. 

Just enough to whet your whistle until another show is announced….. DD down time is so hard to get through!

 

-R

 

 

 

The Present Will Never Last

I feel like the whole world is abuzz with Duran Duran.  Now, I know that this statement of mine is a bit of an overstatement.  Yet, that is how I feel right now.  It seems to me that every other second there is a new post about Duran released by music person/site, a new performance on some show or an exciting piece of news being sent out across the social media world.  Duranland is full of activity!  I am running to keep up, that’s for sure!!  Do not get me wrong.  This is NOT a complaint in any way, shape or form.  I much, much, much prefer this than what it was like a year ago or so.  In fact, I struggle to even remember what life was like then.

Looking back on the blog from a year ago, do you know what was posted?  Three posts were posted on October 24, 2014.  One, of course, was the question of the day focused on Andy Taylor pictures.  The next one focused on the day in Duran history about a John Taylor book signing.  The last one started out like this:  “The Duranie part of me has felt pretty weak lately.  I haven’t been feeling very Duranie like.”  I wrote those lines.  Just reading them makes me feel very, very sad.  That wasn’t an easy time.  The album, then unknown, seemed very, very far away and All You Need Is Now really did, too.  There were no shows on the horizon and no shows in recent memory to look back on.  We were trying desperately to hang on until the quiet ended, until action began in Duranland.

We survived Duran downtime.  We made it through Durantime.  In October of 2014, we couldn’t even imagine what Paper Gods would sound like.  We had no idea that Duran Duran would play at the Hollywood Bowl or would be winning awards like the one they will be receiving tomorrow, the Video Visionary Award, at the MTV EMAs.  Of course, none of this success would have been surprising to us.  We knew that Duran could play special shows and could/should win awards like tomorrow’s.  Yet, I bet none of us really imagined these events.  We couldn’t know.  Here is what we do know.  The present will never last.  (I heard that line somewhere before…Hmmm..)  As much as I want this level of activity in Duranland everyday for the rest of my life, I know that it won’t be like this forever.  It can’t be.  Therefore, I have two choices in how I respond.  I could be super sad about this and worried about the future or I can embrace each and every second!

Obviously, I’m going for the second choice.  So, how am I embracing every single second?  First, I’m trying to check in as much as humanly possible, which isn’t always easy for me with that frustrating teacher schedule of mine, but I am trying!  This might mean, of course, that I’m taking a few minutes out of my day to watch the latest TV appearance.  Speaking of, did you see the performance and interview from X-Factor Italy?

Or what about the performance at Jools Holland in the UK?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfqRoABrag4

Both are well-worth the watch AND sharing!  Yes, please, share away.  Remind people to buy and share, in fact.  This reminds me of the old phrase about voting in Chicago, which is, “Vote early.  Vote often.”  To adapt that quote to now, “Buy early.  Buy often.”  Another thing to say could be, “Share early.  Share often.”  That is another good way, I think, to embrace this time and ensure that every one around you is, too!!!  Of course, having lots of lots of discussion everywhere and anywhere about Duran is important, too.  Heck, I know that my students and my colleagues are probably getting sick of me mentioning Duran and the new album.  (Do you think it would be wrong to include a Duran Duran question on the next quiz for extra credit?!)  I figure, though, that if they aren’t sick of it, then I’m not mentioning it enough!

Beyond all of those ways to live in the moment and embrace the present,  I think, most importantly, it is good just to focus on the now.  I don’t want to spend a lot of time looking back.  It wasn’t that those times weren’t amazing as many other album cycles really were.  I know, for instance, that Rhonda and I wish we were headed back to the UK after seeing a few shows over there for the All You Need Is Now tour.  Yet, as much as I loved that time and always, always will, I don’t want to focus my energy there.  No, I want to listen to the new album over and over again.  I want to watch current clips of TV appearances.  I want to squee with excitement over news like winning awards or new videos.  I don’t want to be concerned with how long this will last or what the next album will be like or will there be a next.  I just want to be right here, right now enjoying Duran Duran.

-A

 

 

Duran Duran on Grey’s Anatomy and Kimmel tonight!

Sometimes things come up so fast that I don’t even have time to add them to the calendar here, and today is no exception.

Are you a #TGIT (ThankGodItsThursday) fan?!? Do you love Duran Duran (I hope so, otherwise…you might be visiting the wrong blog…)?? Tonight is YOUR NIGHT to have your senses tingled!!

Several (many) months back, I believe a photo was tweeted of a certain John Taylor visiting Shonda Rhimes’ office. For those who may be unaware, Shonda is the creator of the Thursday night shows on ABC: Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, and How to Get Away With Murder.  Many of us who saw the picture wondered what on earth John Taylor could be doing in Shonda Rhimes’ office, but the mystery remained unanswered…until this morning when I saw this tweet:

“The song Butterfly Girl that I played on and co wrote with @duranduran is used in @GreysABC Greys Anatomy today. @johnfrusciante also plays!” – @dombrownmusic

Gotta admit, I’m pretty excited that one of my favorite songs off of Paper Gods, cowritten by my favorite “not really an official band member but I don’t care” band member is going to be used on one of my favorite TV shows – Grey’s Anatomy. That’s cool!!!  Dom should be very proud, although I know this isn’t the first time he’s had his music used on a TV show before! (If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you need to go VISIT his website and ORDER his albums!)

Once upon a time, I worked with an indie (unsigned) band named Folio, and as far as they were concerned, my main goal in life was to get their music on to TV shows. (Yes, I was successful!) There was a website I spent much of my time scouring, in search of the perfect licensing opportunities. At the time, I always wondered why Duran Duran music wasn’t on more TV shows where it would be heard by a huge audience…. lo and behold, here’s their chance!! This is huge, so any and all Duranies out there, watch the show, and shout about it on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and even Google+ (if you’re into that sort of thing!)  Our word of mouth MATTERS. (and while you’re doing that, throw my guy @dombrownmusic some love – I’m sure he’d appreciate the tweets!!)

If that weren’t enough (and it never is!), later tonight following Grey’s Anatomy and the other #TGIT shows, Duran Duran will be on Jimmy Kimmel.  Following the broadcast, the post-show concert will be streamed here on Yahoo! Live.  I was in the audience that afternoon, which was held in the back parking lot of the Jimmy Kimmel Live Theatre. It was a lot of fun. I’d never gone to something like that before, and so when I was treated to Hungry Like the Wolf not once but TWICE that afternoon, I smiled, sang and clapped along with abandon! It was a lot of fun despite the 93-degree heat, and the only thing missing was my partner-in-crime, who was flying over the western part of the country at the time to get to LAX later that night. I’m curious to see what takes of the songs they chose to use for the stream, and I’ll be tuning in later myself. When you’re watching the stream later, look for me in the audience!

(On second thought, I spent most of that afternoon willing myself not to faint – note to self: one should ALWAYS take water if they’re lining up outside for the afternoon – I was a hot and sweaty mess by the time the show started, so maybe don’t look for me!) 

Must see and hear @duranduran on #TGIT!  Not a bad way to spend a Thursday night at all!

-R

Duran Duran on Today Show!

It is Thursday, and my friends…it has been quite a morning.

I dutifully programmed the DVR to record the Today Show, because like most of you, I had other requirements that took me away from my television this morning while the Paper Gods took over the Today Show.  As a result, I spent the time between 7:30 and 10am in traffic, dropping my youngest off at school, and explaining to a fellow parent at said school that no, my son…who is 16…is not my husband. Nor is he the father of my youngest for that matter.  (Yes, that really WAS quite the awkward conversation, actually.)

So, as I raced back home, there was one thought on my mind: watching the Today Show in PEACE!  The good thing about the DVR is that I was able to speed through the sections of the show that were quite frankly, of zero interest, and get to the good stuff!  I stood in front of the television, remote in hand, as the camera would scan the crowd and marveled at how many familiar faces I saw in the audience. Man, do Duranies ever get around, I must say!!  There were so many there, and I have to admit that I was almost more excited about seeing fellow fans than I was the band!

I watched as the band played a teensy bits of Notorious and Save a Prayer before cutting to my local news update (who really CARES about traffic and weather anyway?!?).  Then I saw Savannah Guthrie embarrass herself as she called the new album Paper Goods (I’d have been flustered up there too, but then – I write. I don’t actually speak on camera for a living, and there’s good reason for that.)  The band played Hungry Like the Wolf and about half of Pressure Off before once again cutting to my local news. Completely annoying. It’s a shame that they didn’t cut Hungry Like the Wolf because that’s the song everyone knows, but naturally – that’s the way TV works. They’re going to cut the song that is less recognizable. This of course had nothing to do with the band at this point, because I was watching on the West Coast, and the Today Show isn’t even live here. By then, it’s just videotape, and edited at that. I’m pretty sure I saw songs out of the order that the rest of the country saw them in. (Yeah, we might have nice weather while the rest of the country is neck-deep in snow, but we definitely don’t have live morning TV or awards shows!)

Last Night in the City was about the only song that was shown completely intact – and with Kiesza sharing the stage with Simon, which was great! There was only one slightly off-moment during that song, and it was when Kiesza got down on her knees in front of Simon. I was happy to see Simon have the good sense to get on his knee as well, because otherwise, it would have just looked awkward.

Lastly, I saw Ordinary World during the Hoda/Kathy Lee show, which also great, although Simon seemed to strain quite a bit during parts of the song – I’m giving him a free pass on that simply because it had to have been done pretty early in the morning. It looked and sounded like it was early, anyway.  Thankfully, the powers that be allowed that song to go through to the end, and then Hoda and Kathy Lee mentioned that they enjoyed going back to the 80’s. Well, Hoda and Kathy Lee, that’s lovely, but that particular song was released on December 2, 1992… Fact-Checking:  kind of important.

The best part of my day? Social media has been completely taken over by photos of Duran Duran at the Today Show. I LOVE IT!!  I love seeing all of the photos of my friends who were there…lo and behold, even Daily Duranie was represented!

Even a little piece of Daily Duranie was in attendance at the Today Show. Photo courtesy of Pam Greenfield.
Even a little piece of Daily Duranie was in attendance at the Today Show. Photo courtesy of Pam Greenfield.

I’m having so much fun seeing everyone with their photos and reading the experiences that everyone is having,  this is really the best part of a new album being promoted…and we have much more to come!  If you’re not already getting our blog by email, I encourage you to sign up, that way you’ll never miss a single post!

-R

The Paper Gods on Jimmy Fallon

I have to wonder if the band knew we’d end up using the title of the album as a moniker directly for them…

Last night, Duran Duran appeared on Jimmy Fallon in the first of a few appearances on US talk shows, covering morning (They appear on the Today Show tomorrow morning), afternoon (Ellen is later in the month) and evening.

Granted, Duran Duran has done more than a few of these shows in their time…you can almost bet that they appear on at least one or two with every album, but somehow last night was different. I don’t know if it’s just me, but there is a certain amount of positive energy with this album that just feels different. Renewed. Better. Not only can I characterize that energy using nearly every positive adjective known to man…I think it might be infectious!  With more and more frequency, the various news agencies and critics out there are hailing this album using terminology I rarely see associated with Duran Duran these days. Words such as “hit” and “triumph” and “modern” have me thinking that something is most assuredly in the air with this one.

Of course, time will tell if this is merely the passing fancy of the first week of a release, or if the top ten on iTunes and other various charts will indeed hold. I would like to believe that this momentum has the power to not only get this boulder going, but that it may very well increase to a clip that we’ve not seen in a couple of decades. Moreover, I will say this much: it has been a very long time since I’ve seen so much promotion for a Duran Duran album, more specifically – it’s been a very long time since I’ve seen so many reviews for a Duran Duran album, never mind positive ones. In a way, that alone is kind of mind-blowing and almost concerning. I can’t decide if I’ve been dropped into a new universe, or if my own world has finally caught up with what we’ve known all along.

I keep thinking back to Katy’s assessment of the band being a Phoenix. One should never count Duran Duran out of the game, that is for sure. I have had quite a journey settling in to the new sound(s) of this album, which has been gratifying on its own, but seeing that the word is spreading and more people are talking about Paper Gods is staggering.

I try to retweet and repost as many of the great reviews and comments about the album as possible when I’m on Twitter, and I love seeing that Daily Duranie followers do in kind. I encourage everyone to keep up the great work! It takes a village…or a relatively large army!!

So, back to that appearance on Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight show. The band looked fantastic, first of all. I don’t think I’ve seen the band look as great as they do right now in a very long time. There’s just something about them – is it energy? Is it confidence? I had one friend say,  “they are awesome and they know it”…and I kind of think that’s got to be it. I’ve said it over and over: the band has to sell the audience, and damn if they’re not doing it!

I haven’t seen John look this happy in a good many years, and I even saw Nick smiling as he was playing! Anna sounded fantastic, Roger just seems completely content and satisfied, something I haven’t noticed since he came back to the band. Simon,  well first of all, Simon looks healthy and fit – he even inspired me to get serious about my OWN weight loss when I saw him in April,  believe it or not – but Simon’s voice is truly a sound to behold these days. I have seen and heard people say that he sounds better now than he has since Rio (and IMO since the very first album!), and last night was no different. I really do have to hand it to him, it is clear there has been a complete turnaround and rededication to what he loves. Lastly (but not least) there is Dom, who not only looked the part with his black polka-dot shirt and tucked-in tie, but there’s just an overall sense of comfort and family with this group. How that can be ignored, I’ll never quite understand. Overall, there is complete difference in this group. They may have been ready to reach out to their fans with All You Need is Now, but this time, they are ready for the world….and the world is starting to respond.

Take a look at the clip last night if you missed it, or watch it again!

 

Pressure Off from The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon

-R