As it happens, this coming Saturday, the 17th of November – we hear there is a big party happening in Birmingham England of all places! In our final sneak peek behind the scenes of the event, we hear from Dave Stott – the testosterone behind the event! We’ll be checking in on Twitter and even Facebook this Saturday in hopes of hearing from all of you who will be attending, and as always – if you happen to find yourself in Birmingham on Saturday and want to do a little “On the Scene” reporting for Daily Duranie (by way of submitting a blog), we would love to hear from you! Drop us a line at our gmail!
by Dave Stott
Well, this is a first for me… A blog. A mini bio of the Big Man from the DD UK Convention team. Where do I start? What useful information shall I impart on your minds for the next few minutes about who am I? Well….
According to both Laura and Michelle, my fellow co-organizers (and now great friends by the way!) label me with “The Controller” tag for this Convention. Maybe I am, but I prefer to think I’m part of a great little team. Team DDUKConvention.
My name is Dave, some call me Big D due to my height and large frame. Big D suits me well, but I’m a gentle giant with an on-going passion for Duran Duran. I couldn’t imagine a day in my life without this band in my day in some way shape or form. This band has now been in my life for 29 years, not as long as some of you I know, but a lifetime for others.
I discovered Duran by accident. I had heard most of the singles and seen the videos from the Rio album in my first year at Secondary school but hadn’t bought an album at that point. Then Is There Something I Should Know hit Number 1 in the UK… Most of my classmates in school at the time thought they were the coolest band in the world, but I simply didn’t get it. I was still searching for the music I liked and would buy from the local record store, but hadn’t decided on Duran at this point. Well, not yet anyway.
Then a friend who thought the band were cool decided following the release of Seven & the Ragged Tiger that they were no longer, how fickle you people and pop music are! He subsequently sold me this album for £2 and this was a bargain! I then became hooked and Rio and Duran Duran albums were added to my collection very quickly. Singles followed, then 12” singles. Then I started looking at Imports from Japan…When will this collection ever end?
Fast forward a few years (Circa 1988/9) and I was a regular reader of a UK fanzine (Name escapes me now). Then bang, they stopped writing it and disappeared for good! Shame as it was really good and I enjoyed reading it. So I had this thought, “How Hard could it Be?” (to start my own fanzine). Lake Shore Drive Fanzine was born. Over the next two years with some help from a few other fans / friends, a bi-monthly fanzine was published. By the point of the last publication, we had over 200 worldwide readers. No mean feat in an age before the internet, emails, social media and mobile phones. This was the days when we simply wrote a letter to people.
In early 1991, I wrote to each band member and asked them their thoughts and permission to organise a Fan Convention. So in October 1991, the Lake Shore Drive Fan Convention took place in Nottingham. 145 of our fanzine readers bought tickets and enjoyed a great Duranie Fandom evening. The event ended my time with the Fanzine and sadly it ended very soon after.
Over the course of the next 20 years though, my passion never waned. I always got excited to hear Duran were recording, releasing new material. Always hoping they would gain the success they seemed to deserve, but many albums would pass with little success or critical acclaim. But this didn’t matter to me; I loved their music and still do. Over the years I have seen Duran live around 25 times, again not as many as others but I have loved very gig. My most memorable gig, The Forum in London in October 2003 – The Fab Five back together for the first time. A gig I will never ever forget. My ears rang for days from the crowd screams throughout the gig. One to tell the grandkids about.
In August 2011 I was offered an unwanted Rehearsal gig ticket for Oxford in early September. After the disappointment of the cancelled UK shows in May 2011, I was keen to see the guys again in an intimate environment. So, I said yes. I grabbed my ticket and queued – for nearly six hours. This queue changed my life. I met for the first time, Jacky Carroll, Amy Grenville Gilbert, Frank Colley, Sam Bramley to name a just a few…. But most importantly for you guys, I met Michelle. Something weird happens when you are in a queue in Britain. You talk to people. And Michelle and I hit it off almost immediately. We talked and talked and talked for hours… These conversations led to the discussions Michelle mentioned in her blog. Without that ticket purchase offered by a fellow fan, next Saturday wouldn’t be happening! I wouldn’t have met Michelle. In turn I also would not have met Laura.
We have a fantastic venue, fantastic tribute band with Durand Durand, and of course the fantastic donations from Simon, John, Katy Krassner, Patty Palazzo and the band themselves. We will have a fantastic evening!
I have been asked a few times, will there be another convention next year?
My response is simple at this point in time…. Let’s get the 17th November out the way first…. But it is not a NO at this stage!
Dave Stott is the big guy on right (who is in fact bearded even though Rhonda is too blind to see it) in this picture, and he is one of the masterminds behind the DDUK Convention to be held on Saturday November 17th in Birmingham, England.