Category Archives: fun

Fan Criticism

I love Duran Duran.  This isn’t a secret.  At this point in my life, my love for them is almost unconditional as I have loved them for decades.  I can’t imagine that I would stop loving them, stop being a Duranie for anything.  That said, I don’t love everything that they do and I am not afraid to say so.  I’ll post my opinions here, on message boards, on facebook, on twitter, wherever.  I’ll tell them when I think they have done a really great job and when they missed the mark.  To me, this is what being a fan means.  It means that I care about them and love them unconditionally while having opinions about everything they do.  I thought that this is how most fans are.  I started to wonder yesterday when reading the responses to yesterday’s question about most overrated Duran song or video. 

Rhonda explained the term, overrated, on here well, I thought.  Picking a song or video for most overrated isn’t about hating a Duran song or video.  You could even like or love what you deem most overrated.  The point is that the song/video is often stated as something grand, fabulous, magnificent and you just can’t get there.  In my head, this praise can come from the fans.  Perhaps, it is a song that everyone seems to love when the band plays it live or a video that people couldn’t get enough of and you just didn’t feel the same.  In response to this challenge, many people came up with good answers, I thought.  The results were very close.  The Reflex was the big winner followed extremely closely by Hungry Like the Wolf.  Behind the lead was Save a Prayer, Wild Boys, Girls on Film, the Chauffeur and Notorious.  I thought it was interesting that all of these songs were standards in their live performances and, yet, many people thought they weren’t all that.  While these results were interesting (and they always are!), what was more interesting was that some people (I’m not talking a few people here but MANY people) couldn’t or wouldn’t give answers.  Why?  By the way, by asking this question, I’m not criticizing them just wondering the reasons.

It seems to me that some people couldn’t or wouldn’t give answers for a few possible reasons.  One possible reason is that no song came to mind quickly and people didn’t want to search for an answer.  Another possible reason is that they really love every song.  A third reason could be that they had answers but didn’t want anyone to know what those answers are.  I had a number of thoughts based on these possibilities.  I guess I can’t really see someone loving every song even by a favorite band, especially a band like Duran.  They have been around for a long time and have an extensive catalog.  On top of that, their catalog is not uniform as there are some dramatic differences between songs like Notorious to Before the Rain to Box Full O Honey to Rio.  Thus, if this isn’t the case, what could the deal be?

Could it be that they didn’t want anyone to know their answers?  If so, why is this the case?  It could be that they didn’t want people to see them doing something that would seem like criticism of their favorite band.  I could get that.  When I’m in public or with non-Duranies, I would say that everything Duran does is great.  I would never let the outside world see their imperfections.  Never.  Yet, I have no problem giving criticism or questioning what they do among Duranies.  I know that we all love them, generally.  Therefore, any criticism is done with love.  It isn’t meant to harm but meant to improve the next thing they do, if possible.  It also shows that we are thinking beings even within fandom.  Could this be the case with yesterday’s question?  Could it be that these fans didn’t want non-Duranies to see criticism?  Maybe.  I don’t know.  Of course, it could be that they didn’t want fans to see it, either.

Why would fans not share with other fans their thoughts about the band’s songs or videos?  I don’t really know but could speculate that they might think that other fans would judge them.  What if I went on every Duran message board and on every social networking site and started criticizing the album, Rio?  How would that go down with other Duranies?  Probably not well.  Some people would be shocked.  Some might be angry.  Some might think less of me for thinking that.  Perhaps, they think that fans should love everything the band has ever done.  I don’t know.  Maybe they think that fans should “publicly” love everything the band has ever done.  Maybe they were thinking of music critics and the media which never gave Duran credit and didn’t want to seem like those negative people.  Again, I don’t know. 

No matter the reason for the non-responses, I was once again reminded of something I love about fandom.  I love that we aren’t all the same.  We approach questions and events about the band differently.  This is good.  It makes things interesting and it keeps discussion going.  It helps to keep fandom alive.  Now, of course, I’ll be watching for the results of today’s challenge:  Best Storyline in a Song or Video.  Have fun and keep playing, Duranies!  🙂

-A

Back to an Ordinary World

Today is going to be a rough one for me.  I’m very tired.(Probably not unlike Roger or Gisella Taylor!)  Coffee is indeed my friend.  I have been up since about 2:30 in the morning CA time.  Why?  Well, today marks a bittersweet (although I’m having difficulty finding the ‘sweet’ right now) moment in my the life of my family.  The Atlantis shuttle landed at about 3am my time – and really it could have been earlier than that but I was half asleep as we watched it land on CSPAN2 and I’ve lost track of the time.  Yes, we actually watched it land because that shuttle is a very important part of my husband’s family.  My husband was raised in a Boeing family, which was once named Rockwell, which before that was North American Aviation and a few other names that I’m omitting because I can’t remember them.  His dad was an engineer (a real-life rocket scientist, to be honest!) – and yes, he really did design part of the engine.  Don’t ask me which part, because that’s typically when I start to tune out…  He eventually retired from Boeing, but Walt’s brother and sister still work there (or consult for them) in some capacity, and all of them worked on the space shuttle program in various capacities.  He has other family members that also work(ed) on the shuttle program.  My husband has all sorts of space memorabilia that his dad sent to him over the years as he went to launches at Mission Control, and never once did Walt look at them as being more important than he does today.  It’s as though a part of his childhood ended today, and for his dad – well, today marks something even deeper.  He lived Boeing through and through, and it’s inconceivable to him that the US would simply stop funding space exploration.  Yet we have.  I’m not writing the blog to discuss politics, only to point out that all things, even things that we never think will end, do find their end, whether it’s marked with an exclamation point, question mark, or simply a period.   So, our family finds a new beginning and we carry on.

Yesterday, the challenge was to name the song that shouldn’t have made it off of the editing room floor.  I couldn’t wait to read your answers – and the answers were all over the map!  There were some definite surprises though, for instance – I had NO idea that there were so many Union of the Snake haters out there!!!  I pictured some of you taking that record and roasting it slowly over an open fire until it gave in and melted, dripping into the hellish fury below.  Following closely behind were Zoom In, I Take the Dice, and even Bedroom Toys.  There were some other surprising answers out there though that only got a mention or two, such as New Moon on Monday, Breath after Breath, and even Sunrise!  There were many, many more songs mentioned – but those were among the ones that surprised me most.  Wow, even Sunrise is disliked by someone out there.  Who knew?  That band has absolutely no chance of ever making us all happy, do they?

For today, the challenge is to name the most overrated song.  I realize that many of you (including myself) have already made our choice and posted, and that’s fine.  However, for those of you still on the fence, I want to clarify what overrated really means.  We’re talking about songs that may have been hits, or songs that the band has really promoted as being amazing, and yet when you hear/heard it, you are/were either underwhelmed or in hindsight you see that it’s just not “all that and a bag of chips”.  Or crisps if you’re in the UK!  I would imagine that for most of us, there’s still some dislike in there though, and that’s OK – but I wanted to clarify what was meant purely because someone mentioned that it seemed like the same question as the day before.  I hope that helps someone out there!

Now, why did I title the blog using Ordinary World?   Well, if you’re one of my personal facebook friends – you already know my answer for today!  Happy Thursday and have a great weekend everyone!  Oh, and I hope that little Julian learns that sleep is not entirely overrated so that his parents can sleep…and if anyone wants to fly me to Sicily in August, and take care of my children while I’m gone, I’m totally up for it.  😀

-R

Seriously Underrated

OK, I admit it.  I’m behind.  Lately I’ve been lucky if I can keep up with blog posting or even keeping up with my friends posts on Facebook, much less tally up the responses to the daily challenge.  Thankfully, Amanda is much better at multitasking than I am.  🙂   She’s been keeping track, and we’ve been talking about the creative answers that people have given via facebook or twitter.

To begin with, thanks to everyone who is participating in the challenge, for being supportive, and for making us feel good by telling us how great we are for coming up with it – all we really did was change up the daily challenges to suit our own needs!  We’ll take the little ego boost though, and say a hearty “Thank you” in return!!  We hope you’re having fun with it!  Amanda and I had fun coming up with ideas for the daily challenge!  This first challenge wasn’t meant to be too terribly difficult…but I have some ideas for another fun game that requires actually watching the videos that might prove to be a little more difficult…but I need to fine tune it and see what Amanda thinks before we post it. (probably in August just as you’re all going crazy with US presales and “plotting”…because I know you won’t possibly have enough going on to occupy yourselves!)

Since I forgot to comment on the challenge for Sunday, which was “Song that should have been a single”, the answers we saw were fairly mixed – but there were a few clear standouts worth mentioning!  Nice was the #1 answer, followed closely by New Religion, then Hold Back the Rain and Friends of Mine.  A number of other songs were also mentioned though – Leopard, Too Bad You’re So Beautiful, Palomino, Early Summer Nerves were among them.  One thing that I found to be curious, even in my OWN answer, was that we all seemed to only choose more recent songs.  Not many answers were from “way back when”…. I can tell you that in my case, it’s because without actually looking at the song lists, I forget half of the songs they’ve got!  (Yes, I’m admitting publicly that my memory is failing.  Where can I really go from here?)  So, I went with the easy choice – something I could actually remember!  Amanda and I spoke about this today on the phone, and we theorized that perhaps people chose more recent songs from recent albums because on those recent albums, there have been many a discussion about where the fans have felt the band misstepped with regard to choosing singles.  The more recent albums have not always been commercial successes, and to many fans – it’s due to the singles that were chosen.  With regard to albums of the past, many of those have done well – therefore there wasn’t as much discussion as to why song “X” wasn’t chosen as a single.  I’m not necessarily sure that singles really determine much with regard to the success of an album these days, regardless, the discussions are still out there.

Yesterday, the challenge of the day was “the most underrated song”.  This drew a fairly long list of answers as well, but the most mentioned was Serious, which actually surprised me.  Not because I don’t think the song is worthy, but because it’s from Liberty – an album that isn’t necessarily in the list of most “well-liked” DD albums.  On a personal note, it’s my most favorite song throughout the 90’s, but that’s just me.  The answers to this challenge were spread pretty equally throughout the Duran Duran discography…which tells me that there’s a lot of love for this band, throughout their entire history.

I’m looking forward to reading tomorrows answers!!   Hope no one is melting from the heat out there!!  -R

Fandom is Fun!

This morning, the Daily Duranie’s twitter and facebook has been very active!  Today is the first day of our 30 day Duran challenge!  We absolutely love, love, love to hear/read other Duranies answer our question of the day and hope that the participants are bringing the challenge over to their facebooks and twitter so that their friends can read and comment, too!  Just a reminder that today’s challenge is, “Your favorite DD song.”  It seems that many people can answer this question super quickly and others are really challenged to figure out their absolute favorite.  Still, other people are picking their favorite of the day as it can change for them, depending on their moods.  As the challenge moves along, we will do our best to both remind everyone what the daily challenge is and to report back what we hear!  I’m enjoying the challenge so much and it is only day 1!

This excitement reminded me of a fact that can and does get lost in the midst of worrying about Simon’s voice, concert dates, in-fighting, and more and that fact is that fandom is supposed to be fun!  Goodness, why would we continue to be involved if it wasn’t a good time?!  Besides fun little games like this challenge, what else is fun about being a Duranie?  As I think back through all of my years as being a Duranie (which makes me feel old, by the way), I immediately think of a few really entertaining things, including watching Duran stuff with other fans, touring, meeting other fans, squeeing over pictures, learning about the band, hearing new music that really kicks ass and more. 

For me, the most fun time being a Duranie is definitely when I’m on “tour”.  Obviously, the shows, themselves, are a complete blast and really are the best 2 hours I could spend (assuming that they are good shows!).  There is way more to touring than just the show.  I love hanging out with other Duranies, including and especially, my partner in crime.  I think back to past tours and realize how many great people I have met at shows!  Seriously, how fun is it to meet and get to know other Duran fans?!  To me, it definitely feels like meeting a kindred spirit, someone who understands you without you having to explain yourself.  It is like meeting a long lost friend.  I like having those discussions about what shows you have been to, how people became fans, and more.  Of course, in many cases, surrounding those shows is usually a party!  I’m not sure how the rest of you live, but I don’t often get to party like I do when I’m with my Duranie friends!  I remember reading a quote from John once and he said something, “Have you ever had so much fun that you didn’t know if you would get over it?  It was like that.”  I think that is a perfect way to describe a good tour!  Honestly, it is this fun that keeps me going back time and time!

Of course, tours don’t happen everyday so many of us find other ways to have fun within our fandom.  Sometimes, again, if we are lucky, we are able to get together with other Duranies!  This could be something large like a convention or a meetup or just having a few friends get together to watch our favorite Duran related material.  These settings can and, often, do take on a party atmosphere as well!  I, personally, love all types of get togethers!  Conventions are super special because they take a lot of work and don’t happen very often at all.  When they do and a bunch of Duranies get together, it can be magical.  Meetups outside of tours don’t happen very much either but are still tons of fun.  Usually, for both conventions and meetups, there is a time when a little bit of drinking and/or dancing takes place.  Our fandom is expressed in that way!  Smaller, more localized, get togethers are a good time as well!  I love watching Duran related material, including classics like Sing Blue Silver to newer classics like Live from London and everything in between.  It reminds me of when I was a kid and my best friend and I would watch Duran videos for hours just to see a certain look from our favorite or to pick out a new detail!  We couldn’t get enough.

I think we are lucky to be part of a fandom in an era where fans can come together online.  We don’t have to have Duran friends nearby!  Now, we can have friends all over the world to share in the fun!  We have message boards to discuss the latest news and social networking to connect with others.  In those settings, some of the best times, for me, have been when we have a piece of good news like an album release date or when new pictures have been found.  I mean…really…a lot of Duranies like to openly squee over a new picture.  Just the other day, John tweeted some shots from the GQ photo shoot and those pictures got around quickly and there were many, many comments made about the appearance of the guys.  Some of those comments weren’t so PG rated, either!  Of course, then, many online friends get to know each other more and more, which only enhances the fun.  🙂

I believe the entertaining elements of fandom is what keeps us all going during Duran downtime, when there is bad news or when the negative elements of fandom bubble to the surface.  We wouldn’t stay if we weren’t having a good time, right?  So, what is fun for you?  What keeps you a part of the fandom?

-A

P.S. Remember to join in on the 30 day challenge!  Today’s topic:  Your favorite song!

The 30 Day “Daily Duranie” Challenge!!

Lately, we’ve seen (and possibly participated in) several daily challenges on Facebook.  We decided to come up with one of our own, and we hope many of you will go ahead and give it a whirl – we’ll be checking our Daily Duranie news feed on Facebook to see your answers!

Here are the “rules”:  Each day, you post the topic of the day as your status update on Facebook, Twitter, a favorite message board or where ever else you’d like and give your answer.  If you want to give a reason for your choice, fabulous.  If not, fine.  If you’d like to find and post a corresponding YouTube video – the more the merrier!  Please remember to give Daily Duranie credit for the challenge (only because we’d like to get the blog out to as many people as possible…not because we’re geniuses for coming up with a new challenge!), and invite your friends to read our blog and friend us on Facebook/Twitter!

1. We’ll start off easy – name your favorite DD song!
2. Name your favorite DD video!
3. The one song off of an album that should have been a single but was not.
4. In your very humble opinion, the most underrated DD song.  (this can be off of any album or be any B-side, but it must be an “officially” released song.  No demos)
5. Demo that should have made it to an album.
6. Song that shouldn’t have made it past the editing room floor.
7. The most overrated Duran Duran song/video.  (come on, you KNOW there are a few!!)
8. The video/song with the best storyline.
9. The video/song with the worst storyline.
10. John’s best song/video
11. John’s worst song/video
12. Your least favorite video.
13. Fill in the blank: If I never heard __________________________, again, it would be too soon.
14. Your favorite DD performance video.
15. Your favorite DD YouTube clip – could be an interview, talk show appearance, or anything you’d like!
16. Favorite song you’ve never heard them play live.
17. Least favorite song you’ve never heard them play live.
18. Simon’s best song/video.
19. Simon’s worst song/video.
20. The video you always forget about, but then see again and say “Oh wow – I LOVE this video!”
21. The one song you hear that always brings a smile to your face and a memory of a show you’ve been seen.
22. Song or video that most quickly transports you back to your tween-age self when you first discovered the band and fell in love.  (and if you weren’t a tween, whatever age you were when you found them!)
23. Roger’s best song/video
24. Roger’s worst song/video
25. The song that makes you feel guilty…now whether it’s a guilty pleasure or a song that makes you think dirty thoughts is entirely up to you!
26. The video or a moment within a video that makes you laugh!
27. The DD song that describes you best.
28.  Nick’s best song/video.
29. Nick’s worst song/video.
30. The one song you will never tire of hearing live.

Happy thinking!!  We can’t wait to read your choices!! – A & R


You know you’re a Duranie…

Today we’re going to do something a little different here on the blog!  All of us know what it means to be a Duranie, right?  All of us know the varying lengths we’ve gone to at times….so here’s your chance to wave that flag high and proud!   This is a bit of a game that used to be played on the message boards, and so why not do it here as well.  Here are a few of my examples – comment with a few of your own!  Keep in mind that I am poking fun at myself, my friends, and quite honestly people I don’t even know here – the point is that if you can’t laugh at yourself, you’re taking it all way too seriously.

You know you’re a Duranie if/when:

1. You not only wallpapered your wall with them as a kid, you’ve still got those posters hanging everywhere/somewhere from your bedroom walk-in closet (*waves flag proudly*), to your bathroom and maybe even your work cubicle!

2. You sit in your car, stand in a store, etc. just to hear the end to ______(insert a DD song here)____ .  It’d be sacrilege to leave!!

3. Not only do you know the band’s birth dates, but you send cards and even get together with friends to celebrate in their absence!

4.  You have spent your entire family’s vacation budget for the year in order to go to the UK and see shows that didn’t quite happen the first time, so you plan to go AGAIN.  Oh wait….that’s me and MY life!!  (if you can’t laugh at yourself….)

5. You will park your computer on Twitter waiting for Simon or John to send out a tweet.  In the process though, you’ve met many new DD friends!

6. Whenever you hear a Duran Duran song on the radio, you’re convinced it’s a “sign” of something good about to happen….or that the band really IS stalking you!

7. When you’re standing in the audience for a Duran show, you’re convinced that the band is starting to recognize you.  It’s either really cool to you….or you’ve just proven that yes, there really IS a limit as to how many DD shows one should attend in a single tour.

8. Not only do you know where the band stays on tour, but you rush to book a suite at the same hotel, knowing that you might be beating them to the punch for suites!

9. You begin a ridiculously insane project to write a blog each day….oh wait…that’s me again.  Never mind.

10. You buy a tour book for a tour where you never attended a single show, just because “it’s historic!”  (truth be told – I think I own more tour books for tours I didn’t attend than those for tours I did attend!)

11. You agree to buy concert presale tickets for people you’ve never met in person, but have “spoken” extensively with online.

12. Not only have you collected each and every single for every album they’ve ever done, but you’re well into completing your collection for “international releases” as well!  (count this for albums also!)

13. You bought the Red Carpet Massacre Limited Edition Red Vinyl, even though you strongly disliked the album to begin with.

14. Whenever you’re required to come up with a screenname, password, or have a numerical combination for anything, you use the numbers “7”, “7609” and “7803” as often as possible.  Hey, at least you (and at least 35,000 other people on the planet!) will remember the code!!

15. When trying to remember numbers that are not the aforementioned “7”, “7609” and/or “7803”, you desperately try to come up with a Duran Duran connection.  For example:  Say you’re in a hotel and your room number is 725:   7-2=5….as in “the Fab 5”.   (yes, we really do this and yes, it does help us remember….You should see what I’ve come up with to remember the license plate number for my car!!)

16. You count how many times John and/or Simon has tweeted or RT’d you on Twitter.  For SOME of us, *coughs*…this is extremely easy.  For others though, you probably NEED to take a moment to count!

17. You’re buying that new “gold” membership on DDM just because of the Duran Duran fan club card that’s included…and we all know it!  🙂

18. You have more concert pictures of DD than you do pictures of your extended family.  (I almost said children here, but then thought twice.  My kids might read this blog!   Hi kids!!)

19.  Your husband/significant other knows what is coming when you call him/her at work and say “Hi dear. Are you having a great day at work?!?”

20.  You are shocked when other people sound shocked that you’re about to fly to another continent to see the band play.   (Yeah, that’s me again.  You mean normal people don’t do that?!?  How boring for them!!!)

Time for you all to come up with a few of your own to add!

-R