Category Archives: Daily Duranie Birthday

Lessons Learned: 8 Years of (In)Sanity

Yesterday, this blog turned eight!  While some might not think that is a big deal but it is huge to Rhonda and myself.  When I think back to when we started this, I figured that we might write for a year, maybe two, if we were really committed.  Honestly, I believed that it would help us in our writing projects.  It might shed light on Duranies or even Duran Duran, I assumed.  While it has done that at times, to me, the lessons I have learned have been so much more and different than that.  So on this anniversary or birthday or whatever you want to call it, I want to share a few of those lessons.  They are in no particular order.

The Power of Commitment:

Sometimes, when Rhonda and I go on tour, we have uttered the phrase, “It’s a marathon, not a sprint.”  When we say that, it to remind ourselves that we shouldn’t necessarily party so hard in a few hour causing us to crash before the night has really even gotten started.  We don’t need to do everything in one night, if we have multiple shows.  I feel like I have learned that lesson in the rest of my life, too.

I have always known that there is power in commitment.  Experience matters.  When I first became a teacher, I watched veteran teachers to see how they dealt with every issue that teachers confront.  Looking back, I cannot believe how much I learned from that.  Now, I’m that veteran teacher.  My practice has improved over time, not just from watching those experienced staff members but also from doing it myself.  You know what else matters?  It is important to know that I’m in it for the long haul.  Teaching isn’t just a temporary gig.  I knew that I had to get better because it was going to be who and what I was for decades.

I could repeat a similar story for political organizing.  Initially, it was one campaign.  Soon enough, it became two then three.  Now, I get it.  It is part of my life and who I am.  I got better at it, too.  I had no choice.  I feel like the same is true for this blog.  In the beginning I didn’t think too much about how my blogs were.  Even once I realized that some people read them, I didn’t consciously think about how to improve my blogs.  Yet, I think it has happened through both doing it but also through commitment.  Because I know that this is part of my life, I want to be able to be proud of it.  Guess what?  I am proud.  Not only am I proud of the blogs themselves, I’m extremely proud of our commitment.  Both of us could have thrown in the towel a ton of times but we didn’t.  We stuck to it.  We stayed for the long haul.

Keeps Me Connected:

As I have said before, this hasn’t been the easiest year for me.  I won’t lie that there have been times that I thought maybe it was time for me to walk away from this.  It was never because I didn’t like it or my love for Duran has faded.  I just wondered if my attention shouldn’t be elsewhere.  Yet, I know how it would go.  At first, it might be fine.  I would focus on other things.  Over time, though, I would miss it.  Whenever I have suppressed one big aspect of my life, it always comes back to bite me.  I don’t like it.  I don’t want to have to choose between the different hats I wear.  I can be a fan and an activist.  I can be a blogger and educator.

What would I miss?  Not only would I miss the writing.  I would miss the connection.  This blog has connected us with other fans.  I have met so many people as a result of writing this blog, hosting meet-ups and organizing the convention in 2013.  I’m grateful for everyone I have met.  Not only have I learned from each and every person but many of you have brought fun and joy into my life.  You all have reminded me that fandom is about connection.  It starts out with a love of whatever.  In our case, it is the love of Duran Duran.  The fandom part comes when we reach out to each other.  This blog has made that a lot easier for me.  I cannot say that I’m great in meeting people.  Often, I think I give off the wrong vibes or something.  Yet, this blog and everything that has come as a result pushes me to be better, to be more approachable with other people.

Now, this blog keeps me connected not just to the fans I might meet, the ones that I have met, but also with Rhonda and Duran Duran.  This blog is not mine, not Rhonda’s but ours.  It is still that way.  It doesn’t matter how often we talk, this blog is our shared space.  It is a “place” that we both call home.  It is where we are open about our love for Duran and touring.  Beyond that, it is also where we have shared stories about fandom but also about our real lives.  I often joke that it has become our journals.  This blog lets us process through our ideas about fandom as well as general life stuff.  Not only does it let you all know what is going on with us, but often it lets me know what is going with her and vice versa.  It forces us to stay connected and I am grateful for that.  (I wonder if any band member has thought something similar about Duran Duran, that the band has kept the individual members connected.)

This little blog also keeps me thinking about Duran Duran.  When we first started, Duran Duran was at the top of my thoughts when writing this blog.  I couldn’t really imagine writing about my personal life or even subtle aspects of fandom.  No, I wanted to write about just Duran Duran, the band, the history, the music.  Now, it isn’t that they aren’t important as they are truly essential.  They are the reason we started and the reason we keep going.  However, they are much like the other commitments in my life.  Being a Duranie is who I am.  I have been that for so long and in this public way for 8 years now.  That part of my identity and the love that it stems from is so interwoven in my life that I don’t need to shout about it in the same way to prove that.  I know how much Duran matters to me.  It is like breathing.  I don’t need to think about it to love them.  I just do it.

Overall, this blog has changed me in ways that I couldn’t have imagined on September 13th, 2010, when we entered into this adventure.  I am thankful that we started this and thrilled that we keep going.  More importantly, I appreciate that Rhonda is still here on this journey with me and am forever grateful to people who have read the blog once as well as to those who read each and every day.  You all keep me going.  Thank you.

-A

Eight Years of Daily Duranie!!

On September 13 of 2010, I sat down and wrote my first blog. I can remember taking a deep breath before hitting “publish”. I had no idea what I was doing, and no real concern about the quality of my work. Ignorance is bliss!

Eight year later, I’m still writing. I try not to compare my work to others and just let the words speak for themselves. I don’t live with a thesaurus at my fingertips, and while my writing might not be the most technically sound – the feeling is all there. I still love blogging, and it gives my life direction when I don’t know what way I am headed. (Kind of like right now!)

Blogging also gives me a few moments each day to take stock in my own thoughts and feelings. Lately, I have put a lot of my own dreams and desires on the back burner. My family needs most of my support and attention, and that will probably continue for a while longer as we sell this house (anyone want to move to Orange County??) and move to the next yet-to-be-determined place. The process is exhausting, and I really do feel like I’ve had to put everything I want to do aside. I never expected it would take this long, but here we are. Life has its own idea of the way things are going to go, I guess. Blogging keeps me semi-connected, at least. I haven’t even talked to Amanda since the beginning of summer, but I feel like I at least have some vague idea of what is going on with her because I read her blogs. I don’t love that I feel so removed and remote, but I believe that our friendship will bridge the gap and we’ll catch back up again.

I wish I could say that after eight years, I’ve had some huge epiphany, or that I have amazing stories to share. Instead, I’ve learned a lot about myself. I started blogging because wanted to be liked. I wanted to feel like I was part of a group. I wanted to be one of those people that others would come up to and say hello when we saw one another at gigs. Simple things, really. For a self-admitted outcast, it has been really cool.

I know that I don’t have amazing Duran Duran stories. Aside from a couple of things I’ve already shared too many times, I’m just your average fan. I don’t know more than anybody else and I’ve certainly not done more than most of you reading. Once in a while something will happen and I’ll be reminded that maybe, just maybe, the band recognizes me from somewhere – and that’s pretty neat. I don’t need to confirm that the reason they might recognize my face is because I’ve been to an obscene amount of shows during the past eight years (my husband reminds me about that all the time anyway).  I can pretend it MUST be due to this blog, right?  I don’t go backstage or hang out with anyone exciting on a regular basis.  I go to the shows I’m able, and then afterward, Amanda and I scramble to find something to do. We’re always better when we’ve got a plan, right Amanda? We spend a lot of time making ourselves laugh and being idiots when we’re together. It’s not a bad gig, really, despite the lack of pay. I don’t mind that I’m not personal friends with band members, although any time they’re ready to hang with the commoners, they can drop us a line. I really do thank them for being such an effective muse over the years. I have no doubt that it will continue.

I don’t know offhand when the band will tour again. I only know that we’re going to keep blogging, and we’re going to keep laughing.

I really do wish Amanda and I were together to toast to our eight years of insanity, but we’re not so I have a message for my partner-in-crime: We did this together, and I hope you are as proud of it as I am. As I head out to drop my girl off at school, I’m going to be thinking about Daily Duranie, and everything we’ve done together, Amanda. It has been a wild ride, and I’m so thankful I’ve had you to bounce things off of along the way. I am hoping we can get back to that very soon. In the meantime, I know you are doing what you feel you must, I support you 100%, and I’m doing what I have to do to get my family settled again. Love you lots!

Eight years and counting!!

-R

Daily Duranie Birthday: I Can’t Imagine What Comes Next

As you read from Rhonda’s post on Tuesday, this little blog of ours turned six.  Birthdays and anniversaries provide a good time to stop, look around, take stock in the state of things and reflect.  This birthday/anniversary was no exception.  As soon as I start thinking about this blog, a few very clear conclusions pop into my head.

When we started this little venture, I didn’t know exactly what it was going to be.  For once, I just went with the idea when Rhonda suggested it.  I liked the idea of writing frequently and throwing ideas/thoughts out to the Duranie community about all things Duran Duran and all things fandom.  I didn’t consider who would read or what kind of feedback or response we would receive.  Perhaps, if I had thought about it more, the fear of negative feedback or being too exposed might have caused me to shut down the whole thing before we even started.

Looking back, it is sort of funny that I didn’t think too much before agreeing to Rhonda’s idea, which is unusual for me.  I’m well-known for thinking things to death while considering each and every angle.  Yet, with this, I just went for it.  I suspect part of the reason I didn’t think too much was that I figured it wouldn’t last.  For instance, I knew that we were both busy and I didn’t realize that we really would have some serious commitment to it, but we did.

I am not sure why we had such commitment, especially when it started so slowly with very few people reading.  Maybe the slowness worked to my advantage.  I can become easily overwhelmed socially and too much attention too fast would have caused me to back off quickly.  I also am terribly afraid of ridicule, rejection and harassment.  Little secret, this fear often stops me from even trying to be social.  Some see this characteristic of mine as being private while others see it as being aloof or cold when, in reality, it is a defense mechanism.

Anyway, soon enough, our comfort level grew as did the blog itself along with our audience.  Part of me is still surprised to see how many people have viewed our blog or read a specific post.  Likewise, I still get a little thrill when I see a positive or constructive comment on the blog or on one of our social media sites.  Comments like these reinforce the blog and what we are doing here.  As the blog grew, our mission became more clear.  Initially, I’m not sure that we really knew what we were doing or really why.  With every month and year, our vision for this blog becomes clearer.

Yes, we want to provide a Duranie state of the union so to speak.  We have a lot of thoughts about what Duran has done and will do.  This blog provides us the medium to discuss all things Duran.  We now know that we hope it provides the space for others to do the same.  Similarly, we never really thought about the community beyond analyzing our fan community in order to understand it and to really get fandom as a whole.  Soon, though, we recognized that we can’t or shouldn’t just complain about certain elements of our fan community.  No, we had to make an effort to give suggestions to improve what we might be critical about, including trying to bring fans together.  Of course, we know that we aren’t always successful with these efforts but, at least, we try.  Our intentions are good.

On a personal note, this blog of ours has provided me with a journal of sorts, a little record of my life.  While it may often focus on Duran, I captured a number of significant moments in my life.  I wrote tons of blogs talking about teaching or campaigning, for example.  Typically, those blogs aren’t super popular but I understand that few can relate to aspects of my life.  Most people aren’t crazy enough to teach or to be as involved in politics as I have been.  Unlike Rhonda, I don’t have a husband or children to talk about.  Combine these aspects of my life and I’m sure that many can’t relate to me.  Yet, I’m still thankful to have a place to share what I’m thinking and feeling.  Being able to write helps me process.  For example, posting about my mom’s cancer made me feel stronger in facing it.

I know that there are fans out there who tell us that what we do here doesn’t matter to them or to the fan community.  Maybe they are right.  I like to believe that it matters to some out there, though.  Perhaps, I am naively optimistic in that way, I guess.  I know that it has mattered to me and it has mattered to Rhonda.  At the end of the day, I’m proud of our writing here, that we provide a space for some to discuss/share thoughts about Duran and that we have tried to bring the community together.  Most of all, I’m gratified that we have kept going through droughts of news and through critical comments.  I’m proud of our commitment.

Happy 6th birthday/anniversary to us!  I have no idea what will come next but I can’t wait to find out!  It has been a wild ride so far and I suspect the next six will be as well!

-A

Happy Sixth Birthday Daily Duranie!

Happy Birthday!  Happy Anniversary!

I never really know which is the right phrase to use, so I’ll use both today.

Six years and counting.  Daily Duranie – this very website you’re viewing – has been around six years as of today. I can remember the morning I first sat down and typed out the first blog. I had no idea what I was doing, but I was pretty sure no one would read it. (I was probably right).  If you want to see our first blog, here ya go.

A lot happens in six years. The table I first sat at to blog is long gone. One of my kids has graduated, I homeschool now.  I’m WORKING now (well, not quite yet but I’m waiting for my start date as I type!).  We’ve gone through one entire album cycle – writing to release to tour – and we’re about halfway (give or take) through another.  We’ve written, learned, won, lost and are still writing.  We’ve come close, come so far, but yet still haven’t quite gotten there yet.

Originally as I sat down to write this, I wanted to do some shout-outs to thank some people responsible for helping to get Amanda and I to this very point. I started to list names and reasons, and then realized that if I forgot someone, there might be hard feelings. It is the kind of thing that will honestly keep me up at night with worry, even though I would never intentionally forget someone.  I just can’t take the chance.  So thank you. To all of you reading, and even to some who are likely not. No, you don’t know exactly to whom I am referring – but if you’re reading this, you can safely assume you’re on the list.

My husband came up with this insane idea of a blog about six and a half years ago. I tossed around the idea for months before I ever did a single thing about it, although I had thought about starting a blog a few times over the years. I don’t know exactly what it was – the final “straw”, so to speak – that made me finally decide to ask Amanda about writing a blog.  I think that what it came down to was that our message board was slowly but surely dying.

I found myself missing the ability to really talk with people about…THE STUFF.  What do I mean?  You know… all of those things we talk about when it comes to Duran Duran: their music, videos, media, other press, their keen fashion sense… the list goes on.  So this blog, in its earliest days, was to serve that purpose.

Much has changed in six years. But one thing has really stayed the same – I still love writing this blog. Not long ago I had a discussion with Amanda about the possibility of future shows (for me). Even if I were never able to attend another show, I’d still blog. When times have been difficult, and I’ve lost sight of where I’m supposed to be or what I’m supposed to be doing with my life, writing has helped.

The blog makes me feel connected, and I suppose it has given my fandom some purpose. I’ve met some wonderful people as a direct result of being Daily Duranie. Hosting parties, get togethers and even conventions tends to make one a little recognizable – and sometimes there’s just no hiding even when my first instinct is to crouch in a corner.  So, I’m thankful that blogging has forced me to come out of my shell a little bit.  (you can read that with sarcasm or without!)

With each passing year, Amanda and I would get excited as our daily calendar flipped toward September 13. Another year. We celebrated and did a fair amount of patting ourselves on the back because we felt like we’d conquered another height. It wasn’t so much about feeling like we’d done so much as it was that we were proud for sticking with it, even when life got tough. This year, we really didn’t say much to one another other than what we shared in our video on Sunday, and we knew we wouldn’t have time to really celebrate together during the week.  Sounds like we’ve hit middle age, really!

Six years. Not too bad. Still a lot more I’d like to see happen.  Amanda and I have some projects ahead to continue and a convention we’d like to try getting off the ground.  If I had to characterize where we are right now – comedian Steve Harvey says it best: I think we’re in the same place we’ve been for a while. We’re on the edge of a cliff, parachutes ready, and we have to decide that yes, we’re gonna jump.

Jumping means putting our faith into something and just going for it. No safety net…and our parachute isn’t going to open right away.  Jumping requires a bit of a free fall at first.  Are we willing to go for it?  Neither of us are very good with risks.  We like safety, complete with back-up plans. Jumping has no guarantees. I suppose that’s the thrill.  We have to make the decision to jump.

I suppose this whole blogging thing wasn’t such a bad idea after all.  🙂    Happy Birthday Daily Duranie.

-R

 

 

 

Lessons We Have Learned (On Our FIFTH Birthday!)

It is that time of year again, and we can hardly believe it! This year is kind of a landmark for us because as we type, Daily Duranie has hit the five year mark. FIVE YEARS!! Where does the time go? How on earth did we really find that much to write about?!? (we have no idea…)

While we want to shout from the rooftops and celebrate exuberantly, we also find ourselves just the tiniest bit reflective. During this past five years, we have learned a lot. We’ve learned about the band, music industry, fandom, and most importantly,  about ourselves and each other. Since today is a special day, we’ve decided to share some of what we’ve learned (so far) along our way.

Knowing when it is time to take a break

We are hard workers. Some might even say we’re a little obsessed or OCD (both are true). We don’t take often take breaks, and we don’t cut ourselves much slack. The blog is titled “Daily”, and it took us quite a while to understand that even so, if the blog doesn’t get written…the world will not end. Sometimes, we need a break. So this past year, we took one.  It will not be our last.

Sometimes, wording matters

One of us is incredibly blunt and quick to react, and the other is carefully measured. One might think that between the two of us, we’d get it right. We try. Sometimes though, whether out of haste, impatience or downright annoyance, we miss. Sometimes we forget to soften our words or forget that not everyone else on planet earth (!) can see inside our heads. We can’t promise it’ll never happen again, but we try.

We must ask for the things we want

We are terrible when it comes to asking for help. Well, we’re actually terrible about asking for anything, actually. Time and time again we will run into fellow fans, etc. and they’ll tell us that we just have to ASK if we want something. (In that case, we have a list…) Both of us have a bit of a fear of being told no, but we’re trying, and sometimes, to our complete and utter astonishment, it even works.

We know it’s going to be OK

In the beginning, we were pretty nervous. After all, when we first started this blog, we were even afraid to sign our real names or have our pictures up online with it! Even the idea of a band member, someone on their team…or even a roadie reading our blog really and truly scared the crap out of us. We really were not writing the blog for the band to read. We weren’t really even writing for fellow fans at first. We wrote for ourselves, and to a large extent, we still do. It’s only when we stop writing for ourselves and begin thinking about what others might want to read or see that we get into trouble, and that’s something else we’ve learned along the way. (Sounds familiar to the way the band writes and records, now that we think about it!)  It wasn’t very long into the blog when Rhonda wrote something about how if the band were to ever read, she didn’t even want to know about it. That was five years ago now, and at this point, we’ve both achieved a little bit of comfort. It is no longer quite as frightening to know that our words are just “out there” for all to read…and so you know, if the band ever read the blog, we’re OK with that, even if they don’t always agree. We just hope we’re a little entertaining. We certainly make each other laugh!

It’s OK to still be fans

Once we settled into the act of writing the blog, we started noticing that writing from this space sometimes required a bit more distance from being fans than we were used to occupying. Granted, this wasn’t just because of this blog – but also due to the book we were writing. Without getting too much into what we were aiming for with the book, our “fieldwork”, so to speak, required objectivity in order to be more accurate and less “emotional”. So we got into the habit of examining behaviors and culture norms from that angle. The problem there of course is that once you stop being fans…it’s not all that much fun sometimes. Additionally, we wanted the blog to be taken seriously. If we fangirl over every last thing that’s ever done, it’s going to grow tiresome…and the last thing we want this blog to be is a pure sappy sweet love note to the band. That’s just not who we are or the image we want to convey.  We’ve been accused more times than we care to admit that because we don’t love every single blasted thing the band does, that we’re somehow “less” than fans. We’d like to challenge anyone who feels that way to run right out and set up your own blog – then write it DAILY for five years long with planning conventions, pre-concert meet-ups and writing a full manuscript on the subject of fan communities.  After that bar is met, we can certainly sit down and have a conversation about what qualities a “real” fan may or may not have. However, there are times when we desperately want to let that Duran Duran fan flag fly, and we’ve learned that on occasion, it’s not only appropriate – it’s FUN.  And if we’re not having fun…what is really the point?!?

We ALL like a little validation once in a while

We aren’t going to tell tales here: sometimes, we actually LIKE being noticed for our hard work. This doesn’t happen every day, every week or even every month, but there is a certain part of us that needs to know people like and appreciate our work, whether that acknowledgement comes from one another, other fans, other people in the media…or the band and management.  Don’t get us wrong, we love writing. We love this blog, and we love putting on events. If we didn’t, we wouldn’t bother, because it is a LOT of work.  We also love hearing that we’re doing a good job and that someone actually likes what we do. Those little moments are what get us through the day-to-day grind of figuring out how to maintain this blog and website along with raising a family, teaching a class, and being good and decent family members. We both love reading or hearing  that we’re on the right track, and that someone other than the two of us is laughing and having a good time! Especially notable are the comments from fans who have just found our blog, and are overjoyed to read that there are literally thousands of other people out there who still love this band.

Interviews are a lot of work

It never occurred to us that there are two sides to an interview: the part where you meet or communicate with whomever you are interviewing, and the part where you’re sitting down and transcribing that interview…and then writing it up. We ALL say we want to meet the band, and we ALL say we want to ask them questions, but we’re also pretty sure no one thinks about the research that goes into asking the right questions, or the fact that for every minute or two you’re interviewing – you’re also signing yourself up for about 20 minutes of transcription time.  All of that aside, Rhonda says she would be happy to interview Dom Brown again any time!  🙂

It’s OK if our opinions are different from everyone else

This is an especially timely and poignant headline for a week when Duran Duran has just released their 14th studio album. While there are plenty of fans out there that have left testimony saying that this is the best album the band has done, there are just as many fans who are less-than-thrilled. We find ourselves in the precarious position of having to be head cheerleaders AND camp counselors. We love the album, but we also know what it is like to feel as though you’re the only one who doesn’t. This isn’t a particularly forgiving fan community to voice one’s dissenting opinion, we admit. The reality is, it’s OK not to love everything the band has ever done. It’s also OK if readers don’t agree with everything we’ve written. However, we pretty much insist that a reader has actually READ the blog before choosing to take issue. So if you find yourself reading a headline and deciding that it’s time to leave us a nastygram on Facebook or Twitter or even here on the blog, don’t be surprised when we thank you kindly for taking the time and giving us the respect of actually reading our work before deciding to disagree. It’s really that simple. We don’t care if readers’ opinions are different from ours, and we really don’t mind if anyone shares their opinion. Thoughtful comments are always welcome.

Balance is important

Fun matters. Maybe some days we just want to laugh and squee over pictures of DoJo one day, or another time we post a video of Simon’s infamous dance moves (we do miss his chicken dance from Skin Trade or his infamous karate chops).  Fun is important, which is why we’re throwing ourselves our own birthday party!  Expect more fun this next year!!

Lastly, and most importantly for many reasons – the band can’t retire yet!

We mean it. We’re just getting into our groove now, and we see fantastic things ahead. Retirement? NO WAY!  There’s no quitting yet…do you hear us, Duran Duran?  We’re in this for the long haul, people!

 

SO….

Here we are, at the beginning of a brand new year of Daily Duranie. I (Rhonda) am not really sure what made me choose September 13th 2010 as the day to begin this blog, but I am glad I did. While I wrote the first post, Amanda had to agree to this insane venture otherwise I would have never even taken those first steps while she was at work on that fateful day. I remember shakily typing -R at the end of my first writing, not really sure what I had just done. Then I literally shut my laptop and didn’t look at it again until the following day. That was back during the time when I gave myself 30 minutes each day to write the blog. HA. It’s more like a half-day gig now, and some days, even longer. It’s been a wild, crazy ride so far, to say the least. With a brand new album and tour just ahead, I have no doubt that we will have a good many more stories and tales to tell ahead. Thank you for sticking with us, for supporting our efforts, and for just being good people. Huge hugs and thank you’s also go to our muses – Simon, John, Nick, Roger and Dom – without your work, the blog would never have been started. Even bigger hugs go to Katy Krassner and the rest of DDHQ, because we appreciate your help, the occasional retweet, and all of the shared information.

It takes a village to support a band. We are incredibly lucky to be a part of such a wonderful one.  🙂

-A & R

Paper Gods Extras, Birthdays and More!

Normally, I like my blogs to be focused on one topic, one idea, one thesis statement (yes, sometimes, the teacher in me pops out.  I apologize.).  Today, though, I’m feeling a bit scattered.  There is a variety of reasons for this, including all the actions with the new album, so much media that I can’t keep up, being super busy with the new school year, and having a parent who needed 24 stitches in his leg last night.  Thus, it is hard for me to focus on just one thing and this blog post will represent that!  I will try to make it fun despite (or because of) bouncing around!

Extra Tracks

How about those b-sides?!  Oops.  I meant—How about those extra tracks?  Raise your hand if you got the deluxe edition of Paper Gods and/or the Target edition of Paper Gods?!  I DID!  Despite the craziness to my day, I managed to hit the local Target at 10 pm in order to get my hands on a copy of that version!  (I don’t know if that shows my dedication or my insanity!  By the way, yesterday, my students found out about my Duranieness.  Let’s hope I got a few teenagers to go and check out the band!)  Anyway, I’m glad that I did get a copy of both to have all the songs!  In case, you have no idea what I’m talking about, in terms of these extra tracks, here’s a complete listing of songs off of Paper Gods:

  1. Paper Gods
  2. Last Night in the City
  3. You Kill Me with Silence
  4. Pressure Off
  5. Face for Today
  6. Danceophobia
  7. What Are the Chances?
  8. Sunset Garage
  9. Change the Skyline
  10. Butterfly Girl
  11. Only in Dreams
  12. The Universe Alone
  13. Planet Roaring (available only on the deluxe edition)
  14. Valentine Stones (available only on the deluxe edition)
  15. Northern Lights (available only on the deluxe edition)
  16. On Evil Beach (available only on Target edition)
  17. Cinderella Ride (available only on Target edition)

Interestingly enough, with 17 tracks, it equals the same number of songs as what was available with All You Need Is Now.  So, what’s the verdict with these bonus or extra tracks?  I’ve seen nothing but positives and, in some cases, rave reviews about them!  Some (like me) might even be questioning why some of these weren’t included in the regular album.  Then again, we know that many of the best Duran songs weren’t official album tracks but those handy, dandy b-sides like Secret Oktober and Late Bar.  Thus, it makes sense that some of the best tracks are these extra ones.  I have not seen these songs anywhere online to listen to, stream, etc.  My recommendation–do yourself a favor and go buy those other versions to have all the songs.  Trust me.  You will be glad you did, especially for songs like Planet Roaring (the lyrics to this one put me in tears!), Northern Lights and Cinderella Ride (which is prompting some…RhondacoughRhonda…to declare new favorite songs).  As with all these songs, a full review by yours truly and that partner-in-crime of mine will be coming…at some point.

Bestival

Yesterday Duran Duran played at Bestival, a festival located at Robin Hill in the Isle of Wight.  I did have a chance to look at the setlist and see some photos that Duran Duran posted on their social media.  My reactions?

  • The Setlist:

Bestival Setlist

 

What interests me is which NEW songs have they played.  So far, between this show and the last show they did at the Gibraltar Festival, they have played Pressure Off and Last Night in the City.  I figure we won’t know exactly which new songs are going to be featured until they play the first non-festival gig, which could be the show coming up at Terminal 5 in New York City on the 14th.

  • Photos!

If you haven’t had a chance to take a look at the photos Duran Duran posted on both Twitter and Facebook from the festival, do so!  While all the photos are great, there is a picture of DoJo (Dom and John) that really caught my attention!!!!  I LOVE their musical chemistry.  Thus, I would really, really, really like to see a lot of that at the shows I have tickets for (Hollywood Bowl, Berkeley and Agua Caliente) along with lots of JoSi, of course!!

Interviews/Media

Like I said, I have really struggling to keep up with all of these!  I have been having about 18 hour days so I’m squeezing Duran in, when and where I can!  That said, the interview below is totally cute and well worth taking the time for!

Another recent message that is a must read is the little blog post that Simon Le Bon wrote that was posted on the official website, which you can read here.  He really recommends listening to the entire album as a whole.  I think he is pointing out something that I talked about a few weeks ago, which is how sometimes the whole is much greater than the sum of its parts.

OUR BIRTHDAY!!!!

Last, but certainly not least, tomorrow is our birthday!!!  We are turning 5!  That’s right!  We have been doing this little blog, website, organization, institution, insane asylum, or whatever you want to call it for 5 years as of tomorrow!  In usual Daily Duranie fashion, that means that we are having a party!  It is an online party in which we will be watching a little YouTube playlist (link is coming!) which includes some of our favorite Duran clips while having a few vodka tonics and chatting about it all with everyone on Facebook and Twitter!  To get all of the details and to RSVP for the most fun you can have on a Sunday, go to our Facebook event page here!  We cannot wait to celebrate with all of you!!!

-A

1875 and counting…

1,875 posts. There is this nifty little tool here in WordPress where Amanda and I are able to properly track what is going on with this blog. We can see how many people subscribe by email, how many just read here online, what posts people tend to read most…and the list of stats goes on and on.  What I can tell you today is that as of the post I just published prior to drafting this one, we’ve written 1,875 posts. That is definitely a little more than a post a day, but we didn’t really start doing that until this past year when we moved to WordPress, so I’d say we’ve been busy.

If you didn’t already hear, we celebrated the fourth “anniversary” of this blog on Saturday. We call it a birthday because honestly, who doesn’t love a party?!? We celebrated with a online viewing party, utilizing a Daily Duranie Youtube playlist that Amanda and I had put together. We had a lot of fun, laughing at the comments and seeing friends who had stopped by to say hi and watch some videos with us!

Additionally, we had three fun little giveaways planned. The first two (one each for Facebook and Twitter) were based on people sending us their very best “DoJo” picture. Amanda and I each chose a favorite, which was a lot of fun because we had quite a few to choose from! Winners get their choice of a Daily Duranie coffee mug or a shot glass! The winners of that contest were Irene Turner and Leslie Kincaid! The second one, thanks to our friend Karen Booth, was  for a signed copy of her book, Bring Me Back. For that contest, we picked out a few blog titles we’d written over the years and had a bit of a scavenger hunt – all we really wanted to know was what the the blog that went with each title was about. The winner for that contest was Debbie from Twitter, so a copy of Karen’s book will be on it’s way shortly!

Winning DoJo entries:

 

I’ve said it before, but I am pretty sure I didn’t think about how long this blog would continue on the fateful day that I announced to Amanda, “Hey, we should do a blog since we’re working on this book!! Want me to get one together?!?” I’m also pretty sure that Amanda didn’t have any idea what I was getting her into on that day, because she agreed to try it! For me personally, the blog goes beyond writing a manuscript or being a fan. This whole “Daily Duranie” thing has taken on a life of it’s own. Some days, I feel like I’m dragging it uphill behind me, and on other days, I feel like I had better hold on tight because this thing is taking off like a rocket for a very wild ride. It’s been a crazy trip so far with much more to come, I am certain. However, for this occasion, I came up with four things about this blog (specifically the blog, not the book, not the band…etc.) that I am thankful for. My four “positives”, so to speak….one for each of the four “anniversaries” or “birthdays” we’ve celebrated thus far:

1. I would say that most people don’t realize that this blog shares it’s “birthday” with another birthday – my dad’s. He passed away in 2008, and he would have turned 75 this year. Rather than being sad on September 13, I am joyful because I’ve passed another milestone year with this blog. My dad was my hero in many, many ways that someday I might write about, but not now. I just know I’m so incredibly thankful that life has worked out this way, so that I don’t spend that day thinking of the what I’ve lost, but rather what I’ve gained.

2. There was once a period of my life, in high school no less, where I was so shy I had trouble working up the nerve to order my own food at McDonalds. I am not kidding, and I know I’m weird that way because while I couldn’t order my own food – I was drum major of the marching band, calling out commands to a group of 175 of my peers. Nutty, right? Talk about forcing yourself out of a comfort zone!! Nowadays I push myself to ask celebrities and important people for interviews for this blog – something that does not come at all naturally. Just last week I interviewed someone over the phone, and my nerves were at an all-time high, but I got through it, and more importantly, I really enjoyed doing it.

3. I should probably talk about my own fandom here. I think that without the blog, it would probably be fairly easy for me to just put Duran Duran on the back burner. I’m a busy mom, my husband isn’t really a fan, and I don’t have a group of friends here in California that are fans either. The blog forces me to stay in tune with what’s going on even when it might be easier for me to just focus on whatever is going on here at home. Sometimes that is remarkably easy, and other times – the band is in the middle of recording an album and there’s not a lot to keep us all going. I’ve learned to appreciate some of the smallest things – a tweet here or there, a news byte, or even unearthing a video I’ve never seen. I don’t expect all fans to be like that, but Amanda and I made a commitment to BE HERE even when the band is not, and we take that (although not necessarily ourselves) very seriously.

4. Writing this blog has taught me a lot about friendship. To begin with, I have a group of friends that I may not have ever met had it not been for Daily Duranie. I have friends in different states, different countries and even different continents. I’ve also learned that my friends, the real ones, are there for me even if I don’t see them every day, every week or even every year. They are the people that make the effort. They show up. Who knew that writing a blog would do all of this? Certainly not me.

I only covered four things here, but as I continue to sit and reflect, I know these are just the tip of the iceberg, and these four positives aren’t necessarily even the largest positives I could choose. I didn’t even mention all of the traveling or the increased sense of self-purpose or just the personal acceptance I feel on a daily basis, and for someone like me, who spent the majority of her life as a “wallflower”, hoping to fade into the wallpaper and not be noticed, I would have never guessed that writing a simple blog would turn my life completely around.

I said it on Saturday but it bares repeating, I tip my glass (well, this morning it’s really my coffee cup) to my partner-in-crime, Amanda. I hope that this is really just the beginning and that we’ve got at least four more even crazier years ahead. It’s wild to me that we’ve already been writing this blog for four years. How did we ever come up with that much to say?!?

And again, thank YOU. We would probably write even if no one ever read the blog, but because people do, it makes the journey that much sweeter. We hope you find us funny, insightful, intelligent, and even exasperating at times, and we look forward to hearing from you when any or all of that happens!!

-R

Today in Duran History – All You Need Is Now Vinyl

On this date in 2011, Duran Duran’s album, All You Need Is Now, was released on vinyl in the US and in the UK.  For those of us who love vinyl, we were excited to buy this album in this format.  Ideally, collectors would love to buy every album on vinyl, but not all Duran albums were released on vinyl.  For example, Medazzaland and Pop Trash weren’t.  Yet, I really hope that all albums from here on out will be available on vinyl.

On another note, this silly little blog that you are reading right now was born 4 years ago today.  Whenever I think about this blog and how it has been around for so long and takes up some time on a daily basis, I’m amazed.  While not every moment with this blog has been fabulous, for the most part, it has been a tremendous experience and  we are both incredibly proud to have created what we did.

-A

I’ll Drink It Up, Drink It Up, Drink It Up (Daily Duranie Birthday Drinking Game)

Tomorrow is our birthday!!!  I’m super duper excited about it!  I think this really is going to be the best birthday yet to start what I believe is going to be an amazing year for us!  As Rhonda mentioned earlier this week on this blog post, we are having a party!  This party will take place online in both Facebook (our event page is here) and Twitter (@dailyduranie, using the hashtag #DailyDBday14) at the following time:  Time: 11:00am-3:00pm (PDT); 1:00pm-5:00pm (CDT); 2:00pm-6:00pm (EDT); 7:00pm-11:00pm (UK time zone UTC+0.00).

When the party time hits, we will direct everyone to our YouTube channel to check out the party playlist!  We have taken quite a bit of time this week coming up with our favorites!!!  Can you guess ahead of time what any of them will be?!?  Of course, as the video clips change, we will alert people on Facebook and Twitter.

Beyond the video watching, we promised a drinking game!  Of course, we did!  How could we not?!  We have a reputation to uphold, after all, don’t we?!  (Our favorite drink is vodka tonic.  We hope that you might choose that one, too, in celebration!)  What does the drinking game entail, you might be asking!  I have that answer for you here:

Daily Duranie Birthday Celebration Drinking Game Rules:

Take one sip/drink (depending on your preference) every time one of the following takes place!

*A DoJo Moment (Dom and John)
*A JoSi Moment (John and Simon)
*Simon doing one of his humorous “dances”
*When Dom shakes the neck of his guitar
*When John claps to get the audience clapping
*When someone does or says something to make you laugh
*Anytime the word “fan” is said
*Anytime the footage causes you to “squee”
*Anytime Nick takes a picture
*Anytime Roger twirls his stick

10 items!  That isn’t too bad, right?  I’m sure that we will all be reminding each other of this list as we watch and celebrate!

We are also set with giveaways!  In fact, we have 3 things to give away!!!!  We figured this number made sense since there are two of us, doing this one blog and two plus one equals 3!  (Yes, we are dorky.  I completely admit it.)  Seriously, we are WAY too excited about these giveaways!!!  Here is how they will work.  Soon after the festivities begin, Rhonda and/or myself will announce the giveaways.  Then, there will be time for people to complete the necessary tasks before we declare the three winners.

I am SO looking forward to this!  Who doesn’t like to watch Duran videos all day?  Who doesn’t love to hang out with other Duranies?  The giveaways are going to be ton of fun!  I cannot wait!

Until then, we want to thank those of you who have supported us, in any way, shape or form, including buying something at our Cafe Press store.  We appreciate each and every one of you!

On that note, rest up.  Saturday is going to be a ton of fun!!!

-A

 

It’s our party!!

I have something shocking to share with all of you.  I think that in the interest of safety, everyone should probably sit down while they read this next sentence.

The Daily Duranie is turning FOUR YEARS OLD on Saturday.

I don’t know where the last four years have gone. I can remember the very day I started this blog (on Blogger, we moved to WordPress this past January) as though it was just last week.  Furthermore, I’m really kind of shocked people still READ the blog…and even more so, I’m surprised Amanda and I have found that much to write about.  Four years of writing a blog every single day.  We started off writing one blog a day, and now we’re up to writing at least two, and sometimes four or more.  It’s as though we’re addicts!

So, in honor of this occasion, in true Duranie (or Daily Duranie) fashion – we’re having a party, and we’re inviting all of you!  This Saturday, September 13, we’re having an online party using Twitter and Facebook.

What I’m truly excited about though, is that I have finally tested the YouTube Channel waters, and am in the middle of compiling and devising a special playlist for our birthday party!!  (No fair peeking ahead of time!)  Our playlist is going to be made up of lots of footage and videos, interviews, concert clips that we love most! (Amanda and I. It’s our party, we get to choose. LOL)  You should probably prepare yourselves for a lot of John Taylor, JoSi moments, DoJo moments, and Dom Brown.  It’s going to be a really tough day for Amanda and I, as you can probably tell.

Things you should know:

Date: Saturday, September 13

Time: 11:00am-3:00pm (PDT); 1:00pm-5:00pm (CDT); 2:00pm-6:00pm (EDT); 7:00pm-11:00pm (UK time zone UTC+0.00)  

We tried to make a time that would be at least semi-convenient for as many Duranies as possible (we’re shooting high hoping that it’s not just going to be Amanda and I chatting with one another all day, but if it is…we’re gonna have fun anyway!), and the party is four hours long because well, the blog is turning four!!

Activities: Amanda and I will be live-tweeting and on Facebook during that entire time. The hashtag for the event is #DailyDBday14, and we will begin the “Happy Birthday Daily Duranie” playlist on our YouTube channel right at 11am. We will tweet or post what video we’re on so that if you come in at any time during the party, you can find the video in our playlist and join in. 

Drink of the day: This is Daily Duranie. Did you think there wouldn’t be a suggested drink?!?  We drink Vodka Tonics – so that’s the drink.  In case you need a recipe:

Vodka Tonic
Vodka (We like Tito’s and Grey Goose , but it’s your choice)
Tonic water
Ice
Lime (this is really important, IMO.)

Pour at least a shot of vodka (I said at least, but this is purely up to you – remember life is a marathon, not a sprint.) in a short  glass with ice. (or a tall one if you’re like us and prefer doubles. I don’t know what that says about us. :P).  Fill the glass the rest of the way with tonic water. Finish with a squeeze of lime and then stir.  EASY!

Games: This is a birthday party, of COURSE there are games!!  We are going to have a drinking game that will be announced in the next couple of days, and we are also going to have two (one on Facebook and another on Twitter) super-special giveaway contests that will be announced AT the party!  

We really appreciate the support we’ve gotten from the community over the years. We realize that not everyone appreciates or likes what we do, but we hope that for those who do choose to read each day or each week that we’re making fandom fun. We really want to do more to make this into a sort of “fan club” that many of us have envisioned over the years, but that takes money and time.  We do what we can, but we really need your help!

If you really want to support us, come hang out on Saturday, check out our Cafepress store and support Daily Duranie if you haven’t already, watch some videos, and let’s have some fun!!

-R