Category Archives: Chicago

Where it’s gonna end up, anybody knows

This past week has brought some really nice memories to mind. It was 10 years ago today that the US leg of the Astronaut tour began in Florida. TEN YEARS AGO?!?

I feel like I just blinked and went from getting mysterious, static-filled cell phone calls from friends in various cities who wanted to share parts of their show with me to…well…this moment right here as I’m looking back on fond memories and typing away. Ten years flew right on by.

Does anyone remember how much fun we had? We were all excited and happy to be once again (or still!) obsessed with Duran Duran. Many, many people had planned to be in attendance at many of the shows on that tour. Still more of us had never had the chance to see the original five live on stage before, so this was our chance to make that happen. None of us realized until later just how special this tour really was, or could have been had Andy finished all of the dates. We didn’t know that Andy Taylor would eventually leave the band. We liked the new album (we certainly LOVED the idea that the original five were back together).

For me, 2005 was the chance to do it the way I would have wanted back in the 80s. I wanted to see all five of them live. I wanted to go to more than one show on a tour, and I wanted to go with my friends….who just happened to live at least halfway across the country from me. Only a slight geographical issue to deal with, along with a husband who couldn’t quite figure out what semi-truck (with Tiger Tiger blaring in the background, of course) had just ran him over. So badly, I wanted to seize the moment, and just go.

Funny thing about life though… sometimes even when you’re given a second chance, you can’t just up and leave responsibilities lying in the wake. I had two small children here at home, and the aforementioned husband. I had friends making plans to do week after week of traveling and shows, and I knew there was absolutely no way such things would go over well here. I would be lucky to go to ONE show, much less travel, and so I really did live vicariously through friends who threw caution and responsibility to the wind in order to travel. I wished I could have been like them. I did wish that I was more “unattached”. I loved my kids and husband, but this felt like such a once-in-a-lifetime moment. I didn’t want to miss out, yet I knew that there was no way I’d be able to do half of what I wanted. No, I was not nearly as brave as those friends who left real life behind for a while in favor of fun and a little DD-styled mayhem.

I can remember having “the conversation” with my husband just as presales began.  I had a tentative plan of attack: my friends wanted to meet in Chicago. I agreed to the plan for VIP tickets and a weekend trip. There was quite a large group of us that would be there that weekend. Since I already knew I would not be able to attend the LA date due to being on vacation, my plan was to beg and plead for a chance to go to Chicago instead, along with possibly going to the show in Las Vegas, where still more friends would be in attendance.

My husband was incredulous at my asking to not only go to a show without him, but one that was also across the country.  Additionally, he couldn’t understand for the life of him why I needed to go to Vegas as well.  “You only go to ONE show on a tour, Rhonda. There’s no point in going to two.  Absolutely not.  I WORK. You stay home and take care of the kids.  It is what we’ve always done, and there’s no need for you to be running around like you’re a teenager. Is this how you want to spend our money? ” I was furious at the idea of his resistance, but determined to at least see the show in Chicago. Oh…and YES dear, this was exactly how I wanted to spend our money. OUR money. I had earned the right to go and have some fun after years of what felt like servitude, staying at home, cooking, doing endless loads of laundry and cleaning up after two children under the age of 10 along with a slightly messier husband.  Eventually, he agreed, but not without a lot of arguing and flat-out sulking up until the day I left.  He had made sure to tell me, several times in fact, that going to this single show was fine, but that after I came home, that was it. No more traveling. (keep in mind that I’d just been to New Orleans for a fan convention a month or so prior, as well as taking our oldest out of school to go to an album signing event earlier in that month.  This after many years of never even mentioning Duran Duran….so for him this was indeed a big change.)  I agreed to his terms, all the way up until someone mentioned the Milwaukee show, which happened to be the same weekend I was going to already be IN Chicago.

The question was asked, “Couldn’t we just buy regular, non-VIP tickets for this show in Milwaukee and go?”  No one would need to stay longer before traveling home. Milwaukee was only about an hour and a half from Chicago or so, and no one really had to know.  Yes, yes …I thought. I could see this plan working.  So, the slightly more devious side of me agreed to have one of my friends buy my ticket and I’d send them money to pay them back.  Yes my friends, this is when my Duran Duran “life of crime” began.  I bought that ticket and never said a thing to my husband…

…until of course my husband found out on his own.  He’s a smart one, that guy.  So… you all can just imagine for yourselves how that conversation went….I have tried to block it all from memory at this point.

Yes, I’ve been to “a few” shows since that stolen Milwaukee show (which was FABULOUS, by the way!), and of course there’s this blog, among other things.  It’s been a wild ten years, hasn’t it?

-R

Prelude to a Party!

At this point next week, I fully expect that I’ll be extremely tired and in a pretty dang good mood.  More importantly than that, I’ll be beyond antsy for the convention weekend, which is now a little less than 6 months away!  My patience will be shot and I’ll want to talk about the convention all the time.  People will want to shut me up, that’s for sure!  Why will next weekend make me think about the convention?  Simple.  It will be a weekend that contains some of the same elements and ingredients of the convention.  It will be like having a little appetizer, to wet my appetite for the big meal!!!

What are the elements of the convention that will also be present next week?  Some of them are obvious, including Chicago, Duranies, late nights, and clubbing.  Chicago is the place to be both next weekend and for the convention.  I might be a bit biased about Chicago but, to me, it is truly one of the best cities.  What do I like about it?  Separating my connection to the city, I’ll start by saying that there is plenty to do there.  The city has a ton of great museums, including two of my favorites in the Art Institute and Contemporary Art Museum.  Of course, there are science museums, history museums and every other that can be imagined.  Shopping is great there with the famous Michigan Avenue.  There are sporting events and architectural tours to enjoy.  Beyond that and, perhaps more importantly, is that Chicago has a lot of nightlife from clubs of all sorts to restaurants to comedy clubs to plays and more.  Even better, many of the clubs are open late, 4-5 am.  I love that.  I hate going someplace and finding out that the clubs are only open to 2 or midnight.  Unacceptable.  Chicago isn’t like that.  I know that I have spent many nights out until the clubs close followed up by going out to eat at some 24 hour diner.  This, of course, is exactly what both weekends will feature.  This upcoming one will be spent at Spy Bar, dancing to whatever Roger is spinning these days.  Of course, he won’t be playing 80s and I won’t be expecting a lot, or any, Duran.  That isn’t necessarily his focus.  During the weekend of convention, we will be clubbing both Friday and Saturday night.  I’m really looking forward to Saturday night, at Late Bar, as 80s night will be the focus.  They have promised to make it special for us as well.  Could that mean that a lot of Duran will be played?  I sure hope so!!!

Now, of course, Duranies will be at both this week’s DJ Set and at the convention!  I’m assuming that there will be a ton of crossover as I assume that most Duranies coming this week are nearby Duranies.  Obviously, Rhonda is the exception but it also happens that my birthday is at the same time and that she has family in the area.  Anyway, I get people wanting to go to Roger’s DJ Set.  After all, it isn’t everyday that one gets to see one of the band members in person.  That said, it isn’t everyday that one gets to spend an entire weekend with Duranies from around the world, celebrating fandom, either.  In fact, I would argue that in many ways the convention is better.  I know.  Shocking!  Yet, I truly believe that.  For one thing, it is three days long versus a few hours.  Second, you really have a chance to get to know other Duranies at the convention due to time and due to the varied activities.  The connections formed will last beyond the convention, too, which will really help the next tour be even more fun!!  It was in my experience!  Now, of course, another thing both weekends have in common is the clubbing and the late nights!

Roger’s DJ Set is taking place at Spy Bar, which is open until 4 am.  Will I expect that most people will be there until then?  Sure do.  Then, I know that my group of friends are talking about going out for breakfast.  It will be a long night.  The same will be true for the convention as Late Bar is open until 5.  I know that I plan on reaching up for the sunrise that night for sure!!!  I also expect that I might find myself on dance floors during the night, too.  After all, good music and good company, along with a drink or two, allows me to let my hair down, so to speak, and have a good time!  Before I forget, if you are going to Roger’s DJ Set and want to join us beforehand, there is a thread about the meetup on the official facebook event page, which can be found here.  Basically, we will be getting some food and drinks at a nearby restaurant at 8:30.  Please, let us know as I will be setting up a reservation on Monday.  Hope to see you there!

While on the topic of Mr. Roger Taylor, I’m sure that everyone is aware that his DJ Set is being advertised as his birthday bash!  After all, he was born on April 26th.  The convention committee thought that we should figure out a way to celebrate his birth as well!  We decided the best way to do that would be to offer a special birthday promo price!!!  This price is the cost of early registration!!  It won’t include the extra goodies that those who bought a ticket to the convention during actual early registration will get but it will save you some cash!  The promo starts on April 26th and will run until the end of the day on April 30th, central time.  Thus, if you were planning on buying a ticket to the convention, those 4 days would be a great time to do it!!!  Again, the website for the convention is:  Durandemonium2013.  To buy tickets, go to:  http://durandemonium2013.eventbrite.com/#.

I’m so looking forward to this upcoming weekend!  It was be great practice for the convention in October!!!  Hope to see you all there!

-A

Appreciating Duran and Their Ability to Find an Ordinary World

For those of you who haven’t been around the internet today, it is Duran Duran Appreciation Day.  This is a holiday for Duranies, for Duran fans.  Many people have posted pictures celebrating the band.  Others have written a little something to the band or band members telling them how much they appreciate Duran.  It is a special day for the band and fans alike.  Heck, John Taylor even said so in his little write-up on dd.com.  I pondered today’s blog.  After all, I had planned on finishing up our theme this week on favorite concerts.  Then, it hit me.  Why couldn’t I combine celebrating the band while celebrating their live performances AND their ability to continue on throughout the good and not-so-good times?!  What show emphasized this the most?  For me, it had to be have been the show in Chicago in October of 2006.  To review Duran history a little bit, let me remind all of you about what event happened right before this show.  The band announced literally the day or a few days before that Andy Taylor was no longer in the band.  While many of us suspected that something was going on and many had heard rumors, we have all learned to wait for official announcements because many, many, many rumors are just that–rumors.  Like a great many in the fan community, we were reeling from the official announcement.  How could we not?  Was this the end?  Would the band be able to continue on?  If so, would it continue to have the same feeling?  The same quality it did with the Fab Five?  By the time the announcement was posted on dd.com, Rhonda and I were ready for our mini-tour.  While our excitement level was certainly less than normal, we looked forward to at least seeing each other and to see how the band would cope.  The answer, for me, came during that show. 

This concert was the very first event in the brand new Sears Center, located in Hoffman Estates, north of the city.  We had a difficult time getting there because the weather was horrible (cold and rainy) and traffic was worse, especially since I had to pick people up at two different airports.  By the time we got everyone, checked in and ate dinner, we had to rush to the venue.  We had signs made and cameras, both of which were forgotten in our rush to get to the show.  I’m sure that those pictures would have been the best I had ever taken, too!  Ha!  Perhaps, though, this was good as we could truly only focus on the show.  As we walked around, we heard a number of people talking about Andy’s departure.  Obviously, news had gotten out.  When we finally ventured to our seats, we were pleased that they were 8 rows back, right in front of John Taylor (Was this the last of our John seats?!  Maybe…).  Soon enough, we heard the first notes of Burning the Ground being played, which was how they started the shows then.  I wasn’t too sure of it as a beginning but my excitement definitely increased during it!  This excitement not only remained but increased as the show went on. 

A number of moments stood out for not only me and Rhonda but friends of ours as well.  These moments say a lot about Duran, too.  First, Ordinary World was a complete standout for me.  I will be the first to admit that it isn’t my favorite song and I’m rarely moved by it.  Yet, on that night, Ordinary World became about Duran.  As my friend, Sara, pointed out that night, “This song takes on new meaning tonight.”  Duran had to find their new “ordinary world”, a world without Andy, a world after the reunion ended, a world that could allow Dom Brown, a world that could maybe embrace him.  As soon as the solo started in that song, both Rhonda and I noticed that Dom played it differently than he had previously (We had seen him play in 2005 when Andy was gone to take care of his ill father).  Then, Dom again drew our attention during Sunrise when he was singing the chorus.  Dom began to really show himself without disrespecting the band’s loss and our loss as fans.  He needed to step up but he didn’t hog the spotlight.  Somehow, he managed a perfect balance that night on a night that was a true turning point.  Right then and there, we were fans.  We had to be. 

Beyond those highlights with Dom, John and Simon seemed to be playful.  It was Simon’s birthday (the next day) and he definitely enjoyed the extra attention he received from the crowd while John kept trying to bring him back down to reality by reminding him that it wasn’t his birthday until midnight.  Simon kept arguing that it was past midnight in the UK.  Another key highlight was that John seemed to keep looking at Rhonda and me.  Perhaps, this had to do with the fact that we were in direct line of sight.  Nonetheless, I was amused when John mouthed to Rhonda that she should “keep singing.”.  That Rhonda can be such a slacker!!  By the end of the show, Rhonda and I were full of energy and excitement that was obvious to everyone around us.  In fact, at the end of the show, some woman in front of us said to us, “I haven’t seen such enthusiasm in years.”  The band seemed to think the show was a good one, too.  John kept coming back to the microphone to talk to the audience.  It was like he didn’t want to leave.  I didn’t want them to leave either. 

When I look back to that show, what made it one of the best shows I have been to was it showed how strong the Duran spirit was.  The band seemed to be pushing themselves to be their best.  Was this because they felt like they had something to prove after Andy left?  Maybe.  Did they need to prove it to us?  In some ways, sure, it was important to show the fans that they weren’t planning on ending and that they knew that they could and would continue on.  Dom’s performance showed us, not only what a talented and respectful guy he is, but also that he would and could contribute to Duran’s future.  Yes, it would never be the same but it could still be good.  Isn’t that what Ordinary World’s message is really all about?  Yes, there is sadness and heartbreak in life.  Yet, one has to keep moving in order to find the new normal.  Duran took that step on that cold, damp night in Chicago.  They showed us and themselves that they were strong enough to survive. 

It has been almost six years since and, in my opinion, Duran has found their new “ordinary world”, their new normal.  It isn’t like it was with Andy and it isn’t like what it was with Warren.  Yet, it is still good and like all of Duran history, it is worthy of appreciation and celebration.

-A

Duran Duran saved my marriage!

So yesterday marked seven fateful years since Amanda and I, along with many of our friends, saw Duran Duran at the Allstate Arena in Chicago.  Today marks seven years since I actually had the nerve to lie to my husband and travel up to Milwaukee to see the band play at the Riverside Theatre.

What?!?  I lied to my husband?!?  Yes.  Yes I did.  Proudly!

Poor Walt.  I don’t think he really quite knew what he was doing back in 2001 when he bought tickets to see Duran Duran (Simon, Nick & Warren) play at the House of Blues in Anaheim. He opened a door to something I’d long since closed.  It wasn’t as though I was no longer a fan, it was that I’d moved on in life. I had a husband. I had kids.  MTV didn’t really play videos any longer…I didn’t have Roger Taylor occupying my walls….

Of course, after that initial show, I was desperate.  Then the reunion was announced, and I saw the Fab 5 live for the very first time. I made friends, went to a convention, and was virtually hooked.  Wishful thinking “plans” were being thrown around by my friends, and when the Astronaut tour was announced, I think we all had about 48 hours to decide on a game plan.  I knew I could not be at the LA show due to a family vacation, so I tried to figure out what show(s) I could possibly attend.

 At the time, I’d never traveled for a single show, and my husband is the epitome of “moderation”.  Walt is an engineer.  He’s very measured.  Very easy-going, yet very serious when he needs.  Walt doesn’t do “frenzied” or “fanatical” about anything.  He doesn’t have an obsessive personality about anything, and at the time – he certainly didn’t understand the need to travel to see a rock band.  He had a very difficult time understanding that I’d made friends online.  “Online? Rhonda…you don’t even know these people.  You need to wonder why they’d even want to be friends with you.  You have nothing in common with any of them.  You’re married.  You have children.  Yes, I know you went to a convention with them, but you told me then that it wouldn’t be an ongoing thing, that you were just trying to see the planning through.  Now you want to go to how many shows?  This isn’t even necessary!”  He had an even harder time understanding why I would want to go to more than one show on a tour.  “Aren’t they all the same? It’s the same songs night after night!”  So, there were plenty of “discussions” between the two of us.  It was understood that I would fly to Chicago, see the show the following day, and then fly back home on what I think must have been Sunday afternoon.  Never mind that the rest of my friends were going on to see the Milwaukee show the following night – Walt felt that there was no reason to see any more than one show. I had to book my flights so that I was able to take the kids to school before I flew out (he was not very helpful, and I think even he would agree that he did everything he could to make the trip as difficult as possible for me so that I wouldn’t try it again.), and I had to be back in time so that he wouldn’t miss any time from work.

All that was fine and good, except for the small detail of the Milwaukee show.  I really wanted to go!  I was already going to be in the area (it’s about an hour and a half from Chicago), and it seemed like such a small thing.  So, I told my friends to count me in on the ticket, and I’d deal with the consequences later.  Much later.

The truth is, the show was outstanding and I was not wrong in my decision to get the ticket.  Our seats were great, the band saw the signs we’d made for the show, and at one point we’d even gotten a wave from Roger Taylor as he stood off stage during The Chauffeur. (We were wearing light up horns and he saw them.  Yes, we really wore them, and at the time it was fun. Thank goodness that tradition has been left in the past!)  That night also marked the first time I’d ever waited outside of a theater for the band to leave…and the first time we ever attempted to follow them back to their hotel in Chicago!  It was the first time we’d ever gotten a hotel room for the pure purpose of storing luggage (a tradition that I am hoping we’ve kind of left in the past – I require a bit more sleep now than I did seven years ago!), and it was the first…and last time, I ever lied to my husband about a concert….except for that time in New York City for the fan show…. (another blog for another day!)

I don’t quite remember how long it was after that show that I finally came clean about the tickets, but I doubt it was long.  The thing about my husband is that he’s very smart.  He sees the anomaly very quickly when things are odd, and so I have little doubt he already suspected that I’d gotten a ticket before I’d even left.  Thankfully since that time my husband has figured out that this obsession isn’t really going to go away, and he also understands why I go to more than one show.  He also understands why I’ve traveled overseas to see them.  Twice.

Since that show, I’ve seen the band “a few times”.  I’ve traveled to see them more than I’ve seen them here in my state, actually.  While I’m the first to admit that my traveling has been expensive, I don’t think my husband really minds much beyond the cost.  When this whole obsession started for me in recent times, I think the one thing Walt was concerned about was that we’d somehow grow apart.  I’d have my fun times and experience things without him, and from there we’d have separate lives.  Oddly, exactly the opposite happened.  I had my own stories to share with him, and I always do.  I love that my conversations include far more than just what goes on here in the house on a daily basis.  It used to be that when I’d have the chance to get out of the house, travel to a show and see my friends, I felt like it was an escape from captivity.  It’s funny, now that I feel like I have the freedom to travel (within reason), I’m much more content here at home, too – and so is my husband.

While I wouldn’t recommend lying to your husband about getting tickets to see Duran Duran, I would wholeheartedly encourage anyone to go and see them.  I run into so many fellow moms who ask how my husband is with my traveling to see the band.  To begin with, I don’t go that often.  Twice a year at most – and typically my trips are for long weekends (4 or 5 days…5 is pushing it, my husband says!).   I don’t usually expect the impossible.  I can’t be gone for 6 weeks on a tour, and really – I would miss my family if I did.  (no really, I would!!)  Also, as turnabout IS fair play, I should share that my husband is gone at least once or twice a WEEK these days.  They are typically “day trips” that means he takes our oldest to school, gets on a plane, and is gone until about 11 o’clock at night.  He likes coming home to sleep, even if it’s just for a few hours.  Then there are the extended trips, which means he’s gone for about a week or so.  Those happen 5 or 6 times during the year, and we all hate those due to the time differences.  (His travel is typically to the Far East or the UK/Europe)  So, we’re used to the travel here in our house.  Of course, his is for work..and mine is for research, *coughs* and fun! I always tell fellow moms and fellow wives that it’s important to have your own interests.  Being married does not mean losing your own identity.  That’s a common thing that women seem to forget, especially when they marry young as I did.  I really can’t explain how liberating it feels to be able to share my own experiences and stories with my family.  I think it’s important for my kids, but especially my 15 year old daughter to see that even when you’re married and have a family that a woman really can and should have her own interests that don’t necessarily include the rest of the family.

Did Duran Duran save my marriage?  Interestingly enough, in some respects – they really kind of did!

-R

Starting to Remember…

Each day, the Daily Duranie acknowledges some event in Duran’s career in our “Today in Duran Duran” post/tweet/status update.  Today’s event was the Chicago show in 2005.  I always, always, always think of that show when this day rolls around.  It is one of those shows that bubble up to the surface of shows that I have been to.  It was a memorable night and a memorable weekend.  Last year, I also blogged about this date, which you can read here.  Obviously, in that blog post, I was comparing that spring 2005 tour to our upcoming tour in the UK.  I talked about going VIP and what the show was like, in terms of the band.  Yet, today, Rhonda reminded me that there was so much more to that show than the 2 hours the band was on stage and that it is important to remember moments, times, experiences that solidify one’s fandom.  She’s right. 

For me, this show was the first I had been to in a LONG time and was the beginning of a little run of shows for me.  I was way overdue.  On top of that, I was going to be hanging with people I had met only months ago at the Duran Duran Fans Convention.  Many of us out of that group were doing both Chicago and Milwaukee together that weekend.  Before that weekend, I was looking forward to it like you wouldn’t believe!  I had a countdown going since December when the presales had taken place.  I remember leaving work on Thursday, the day before the show, after basically having my colleagues push me out the door.  Apparently, I had been driving them nuts with my excitement!  It is funny now, looking back.  I didn’t even entertain the idea that the weekend would be anything less than fabulous!  I could never imagine a less than satisfying show and never even knew or thought that anything could go badly with the people I was going to be with.  Lucky for me, I was right!  Both the show and the other fans reinforced my fandom.  In fact, I think the experience was so good that I’m still looking for a repeat or something that would equal that weekend.  I, honestly, couldn’t have asked for more.

During that weekend, many/most of my expectations for touring were formed as were many of the traditions that Rhonda and I continue to this day.  Obviously, both the Chicago and the Milwaukee shows were amazing, despite having a very fresh Dom Brown there (Andy went home to be with his ailing father).  The crowds were great!  I now expect nothing less!  That weekend also saw very little sleep due to all of the fun we were having.  In fact, we got something like 7 hours of sleep in 3 nights.  We didn’t sleep at all that last night, which caused Rhonda and I to discover that when we are sleep deprived, we get the giggles.  That happens to this day as I think back to Rhonda laughing hysterically in the middle of the show in Bournemouth this past December!  How did we survive on such little sleep?  The answer to that is simple:  adrenaline, coffee and alcohol, which reminds me that we weren’t so good about eating that weekend either.  At one point, we had gone like 38 hours or something without eating!  Obviously, we were having WAY too much fun to worry about eating or sleeping!  We figured that we would do plenty of that in our normal lives!  The whole experience felt so amazing that I desperately wanted to do more!  The experience showed me that the band REALLY was fabulous live, that Rhonda and I were compatible touring partners, and that Duranies really could be fun!  So many of the people who were at either or both of those shows are people I still know and still feel lucky enough to call “friends”.

What is the point of sharing all of this with you?  It isn’t because I think that any of you would really care about our lack of sleep or eating over a wild weekend seeing Duran live.  It is to point out a few things.  First, in my experience, there is a lot more to a Duran concert than the two hours they are on stage.  A Duran show means great music, but it also means fabulous times filled with good friends and a ton of fun!  Second, this weekend 7 years ago today hooked me for life.  I had been a Duranie since 1984 and wasn’t really planning on not being a fan but after this particular weekend, it became something more, something deeper, something addicting.  I saw and learned about being a fan in a whole new way.  I will be forever grateful for this.  Third, when things seem ugly in the fandom, when it doesn’t feel fun to be a Duranie, when I’m frustrated by something to do with Duran Duran or their team, I remember this weekend.  I remember not only what fun I had, but I remember that weekends like the one I’m describing is really what fandom is all about.  It is about friendship.  It is about fun.  It is about amazing experiences, which, in this case, were made possible by Duran Duran and their music. 

-A 

Chicago Date Reactions!

Last night after being questioned about the Chicago date, Duran Duran’s facebook status was updated to say that the Chicago show was on the continuing All You Need is Now tour but that they still had some details to work out with the promoters for that show.  I, of course, found it interesting that they did come to confirm that this date and location were true and to give an explanation as to why the information was not provided by them.  What was more interesting than that, however, as a student of fandom was the reaction from other fans.  Obviously, the reaction varied from excitement to frustration to disbelief.
Many fans were excited by this news of a date in Chicago in August.  Of course, the fans that are close to Chicago were overjoyed as were other fans that might be able to travel to the show.  The other group of people who seemed thrilled with this news are other US fans who now know that they are, for sure, coming back to the States and when.  For those fans, they want to know the rest of the dates and they want to know them yesterday!  Obviously, this Chicago date wasn’t released by Duran and the only reason the information got out was because the venue itself shared it.  August is still a long way off, a full five months away, in fact.  I get why people want the dates, though.  People want to plan.  For some people, this planning might be as simple as I need to know to ask for this date off.  For others, it might be to avoid dates for a vacation.  Still, others want to know to figure out what dates they can and will attend.  What will be interesting now that we have one date are how quickly the other dates, no matter how many or how few there are, will be released in some fashion.  Will Duran headquarters feel it necessary to speed up the process in order to control what gets out, when?  I don’t know.  I guess for those of us who are waiting for the rest of the dates, we can only hope.
Other fans used the opportunity to talk about their neck of the woods.  People commented on the status update to request shows in their location.  Some of these locations included big cities and some included smaller places or places that Duran has never played at.  Some people even suggested specific venues or dates.  Of course, many European fans were thinking about their part of the world and wondered why they haven’t received any information regarding shows there, especially since they are supposed to be happening in the summer and many were rescheduled shows from last summer.  I can understand this feeling.  If I was in Europe, I, too, would want to know the dates.  After all, everyone has to plan!  That said, I hope that they realize that the release of this US date had nothing to do with the band or their team.  It got out because of the venue.  Now, if they want to complain about the lack of dates to Europe or how they seem to be taking a long time with that in general, I totally get that!  Complain away as I’m not sure what is taking so long with those dates! 
The European fans were not the only fans to voice negative reactions.  Obviously, there are many other parts of the world that don’t have any shows to look forward to, no matter when they are announced.  Many of the fans in that situation were gracious, though, and expressed happiness for American fans.  Yet, many American fans did not seem happy, including some located in or near Chicago.  Complaints about the venue were heard.  Now, for all of the venues I have been to in Chicago, believe it or not, but I have never been to the Ravinia.  Thus, I cannot speak about the venue.  It may be a bad choice or not.  I don’t know.  Some of the criticism I saw included that the people who attend shows there are “snobby”.  Others said there are many areas in the venue where you cannot actually see the stage.  Some did not like that it would be outside.  Suggestions about other venues were made.  I can appreciate making suggestions, but this appears to be definite since the venue and many news outlets have reported this.  Duran isn’t going to change it.  Nonetheless, while reading these reactions, I cannot help but to think of the other group of fans I mentioned earlier, the fans that get no shows.  None.  Zero.  I suspect that they wouldn’t complain about the venue or location if they got even one show that they could go to.  Likewise, I’m sure that the European fans would love to have some show to plan for, no matter where it was.  At the same time, I can understand those fans that are unhappy with the venue or date.  The date isn’t great for me, either, as I’m required to be at work the next day.  A week earlier or a weekend would have made a big difference for me.  However, I do understand and acknowledge that there are fans that do not have this opportunity so I should appreciate what I have.  I have to put myself in their shoes for awhile. 
The last kind of reaction I saw was disbelief.  People doubted it because it didn’t come from Duran headquarters.  Even when they confirmed the date and location, people still question it since there was a statement made about details to work out.  Could the date fall through?  Sure.  Anything is possible.  We have learned that.  Yet, this date and location seems locked in and I bet those details are ones that we won’t even see or hear about. 
The varied reaction among Duranies tells me a lot.  It tells me that we have been doing this for a long time.  It tells me that the Duran machine isn’t always good about sharing information.  It tells me that when a show is announced, we almost all struggle to look beyond ourselves and our own wants and situations. It tells me that really not all fans are going to be happy at the same time.  It tells me that as crazy as yesterday was in Duranland, it is still the same old Duranland!
-A

You want US concert date rumors and info??

I had a great blog about mid-life crisis all written and ready to go this morning. Then I woke up and checked my phone.  I had no less than text messages (a rarity), and three of them had to do with Duran Duran.

In case you haven’t heard yet, and I’m doubtful that’s even possible given how quickly the news is spreading, Duran Duran is playing at Ravinia in Chicago on Wednesday August 29th. This is the first date we’ve heard, and yes – Daily Duranie has spies everywhere! (I’m totally lying about that, but we will gladly take any information that anyone wishes to share, anonymously or otherwise!!)
 Let me give just a bit of background info on dear old Ravinia to set the stage. Ravinia is an outdoor venue just outside of Chicago. It’s a beautiful setting with lots of trees, a lawn area and of course a seated section. Typically people take a picnic basket and enjoy a meal before the show starts. It’s a lot of fun and a unique way to go to a concert. It’s very similar to what happens at the Hollywood Bowl near where I live in California. Due to the fact that Ravinia is seasonal and holds a special place in the heart of Chicagoland, they sell what are called donor subscriptions to seats in the venue. That means that a person can buy several tickets to shows (if not all of the shows) throughout the season and have the same seats for each show, basically. This also means that it’s very possible many of the best seats in the house will have already been sold to “donors” for the Duran show…assuming of course that the ticket holders for this show will choose to attend. That said, this show goes on sale at the Ravinia box office on April 26th.  
Of course, as soon as I logged onto Facebook this morning, the complaints began filing in.  Once again, people are annoyed that we’re getting dates one at a time verses being announced all at once.  Others refuse to believe what is absolutely good information unless the band themselves announces. (It’s ON the Ravinia website.  That’s pretty solid info if you ask me.)  Still others are complaining that it’s a weeknight, and many many more are worried about presale dates.  
Pretty standard fare for Duranies overall, don’t you think?
Naturally this one date being leaked now begs questions such as:  when are the rest of them??  There are plenty of rumors flying around, including that there will be a very limited amount of US dates for this “tour”.  I have no idea what that means exactly, other than I should probably rethink my plan to take 6 weeks and follow the band around the US. 
(I’m totally lying about taking 6 weeks, too….but it sounded good, didn’t it?)    
One thing I will say:  I’m going on vacation from July 28 through August 11th.  The band should plan accordingly, and contrary to popular belief, that does NOT mean to have a show in California during that time, thanks!  
One more thing before I leave you all for the weekend, and that’s simply that Daily Duranie has hopes of doing meetups, pre and post show dinners and drinks, and maybe even a Duranie dorm or more for these shows.  We’re hoping to bridge the gap that DDM left behind in 2005 when they stopped organizing things. As more information becomes available to us, we’ll definitely share and start planning in earnest!  
-R

Up, Up in the Air!!

By the time you read this, I’ll be on my plane bound for ORD – Chicago’s O’Hare airport.  I believe I’m due to land at 2:20pm, and I’m going to hit the ground running.  I am going to grab a cab, head to my sister’s apartment…no idea where that is in the city, thankfully she sent me a set of directions for whatever “lucky” cab driver gets me in their cab….and then we’re going to go grab a bite to eat and perhaps a celebratory drink to start my weekend.  I’m celebrating the fact that I actually made it, because if you read yesterday’s blog, you must understand how ridiculous my schedule can be at times.  I’m on holiday at the moment though, so we’re not going to discuss that!!

Since I’m writing this the day before I leave, I have no idea how my flight will be – but I’m guessing it will be uneventful as always.  I have window seats both ways. (typically I fly aisle because I’m claustrophobic, but I learned on my trip out from the UK that I kind of like having a window seat!  I can get in there and hole myself up for the flight – read to my hearts content and not be bothered!)  I downloaded some new music (Naked and Famous if you must know – I don’t know why I like them, but I do.  Kind of reminds me of some stuff I used to listen to back when I was in high school I suppose), and I’ve got 5 books waiting for me to tackle – and yes, I really will read them all by the time I get home.  Amongst my other talents, I’m a speed reader, and no, I’m not kidding.  Too bad I can’t WRITE books as quickly as I read them!

I can tell you that I didn’t sleep well last night (and just so we’re all on the same page – I’m literally writing this blog at 9:40 am the day before I even leave…but I know myself.  I never sleep the night before I travel.), and that I already have butterflies in my stomach.  I’d love to say that they’re from excitement of seeing the band, but truthfully, they’re from nerves.  I quietly freak out until I get through security. *sigh*  There’s something about making sure I’ve followed the rules, and the anticipation of being felt up by a complete stranger that makes my stomach feel like it’s on a roller coaster.  Ugh.  Here’s a thought:  if the whole band thing doesn’t work out for Duran Duran, I’m pretty sure they could get jobs as TSA agents.  I’d bet my husband’s salary that they’d have a LINE of women waiting to allow them to do a pat-down.   Just sayin’.

Amanda has our whole trip – all 48 hours or so of it – completely planned out.  I scanned it, but honestly, I let her tell me where we’re going and when we’ve gotta leave.  After being the one to plan everything out at home, I’m happy to sit back and be told what to do for a change.  We don’t have any huge plans other than to meet up with some other fans on Friday before the show (remember everyone – Hoyt’s Tavern at Hotel71.  5pm sharp and come prepared to have fun!!) and of course go to the show (reminder to self: BRING YOUR TICKET!), but other than that, we have some side trips planned to some places we enjoy.  It should be a very fun, but very brief trip.  I wonder if I’ll actually have time to sleep….

In any case, Amanda and I do have a surprise or two planned for the blog.  I’m crossing my fingers to make sure it works out, but rest assured, it should be funny no less.  You’ll be hearing from Amanda and I over the weekend, and of course we’ll tweet when we can as well!  Please feel free to say any chants, beg the gods, do any rituals you can in hopes that Secret Oktober, Shadows on Your Side or even Is There Something I Should Know is included in the setlist on Friday night!!!

Happy weekends everyone and I’ll be blogging on Monday!

-R