Category Archives: Nick Rhodes

“I Know the Answer…but…I’m Asking You the Question”

For the last month or so, our “daily” questions have become weekly ones.  Specifically, we have been asking people what they would like to ask the various band members if they had a chance to do a serious interview.  I went with this theme for a couple of reasons.  First, we are always complaining about how lame most questions are in an actual interview.  Heck, I think a lot of thought that of the non-fan questions asked during the Diamond in the Mind premiere were boring.  Second, this would give people an opportunity to think, seriously, about what they would like to know.  Unfortunately, the band has not asked us to present these questions to them.  (Have no fear, though, I have saved them…in case, pigs fly, and they do ask!)  Thus, we are not able to get the actual answers but, like everything else, this theme has taught me about our fandom, which is always a good thing! 

Each week, I asked what 10 questions people would like to ask a band member and I named that band member.  When it got to this week, which was the guitarist spot, I played it safe by allowing questions for any of the guitarists (Andy, Warren or Dom) or a combination of two or all three.  What was fascinating to me was which member received the most questions (John) and which one received the least (Simon).  Why is that?  Of course, not every question I got was of a serious nature no matter how many times I emphasized that.  Thus, I did not count things like, “Can I have your baby?” or “Will you marry me?” or things like that.  I definitely understand the instinct to do that.  Trust me, I do.  Nonetheless, I didn’t include those as I would never ask that for real and doubt that most fans would.  So, why did John receive the most questions and Simon the least?  I don’t really know but I could make some conclusions based on the responses I did get and based on our fandom.  First, people have gotten pretty comfortable asking John questions since he joined Twitter.  In fact, in most cases, when John is on, he is responding to questions or comments directed at him.  Simon, on the other hand, doesn’t use Twitter in the same way.  While he might respond to people every once in awhile, he doesn’t do it consistently like John does.  Second, people either seem to believe that Simon wouldn’t be serious in an interview or that they would not be able to ask him a question due to nerves, excitement, etc.  I can definitely understand being nervous!  I would be ridiculously nervous as well if I ever had the chance to ask them one question…never mind 10!  Again, though, I find it fascinating that people would be more nervous with Simon over John, Roger, Nick, Andy/Warren/Dom.  Why is that?  As for Simon not taking the interview seriously, I actually disagree with this.  Yes, I have seen Simon be “silly” but, for the most part, Simon is very pleasant and personable in interviews, at least in the ones I have seen.  Maybe, someone can point out interviews in which he doesn’t take them or the interviewers seriously. 

Beyond who got the most and least questions, I was also fascinated about what topics each band member was asked about.  Roger’s questions focused a lot on his decisions to leave the band and rejoin the band as well as the time in between.  I get wanting to know about that.  Of course, there were other topics touched on, including his family, touring, fans, music in general, health and DJing.  Nick’s questions, on the other hand, focused a lot more about art, fashion, photography, and traveling.  Nick was asked about Andy but Roger wasn’t.  Why is that?  Of course, Nick was also asked some questions about TV Mania, occupations, keyboarding and more.  John’s questions focused a lot on his life experiences, touring and Duran’s music.  In fact, John got the most questions about Duran’s music.  That fascinates me.  After all, John wasn’t there for an album and a half and there are many fans out there that feel like Nick and Simon are at the heart of the band (I don’t agree with this, by the way.) but they weren’t asked about Duran’s music nearly as much.  In fact, John was asked 21 different questions relating to their music and career.  Nick was asked 5 and Simon was asked 4.  What does this mean?  Does it mean that John is more about their music whereas Nick is more about the art/fashion/image that goes with the music, or so people think?  I don’t know, but I do find it interesting. 

Then, of course, when I asked about the guitarist, people responded in a fairly predictable way.  People’s preferences for one guitarist came through loud and clear.  Many seemed annoyed at the band for not making Dom an official member.  Others seemed irritated that Andy left and still others pointed out Warren’s contributions to the band.  I was not trying to stir the pot or bringing up old wounds.  I just wanted the guitarist spot to be treated equally, no matter who was occupying that position.  Obviously, what I was reminded of is how strongly people in our fan community feel about their guitarist of choice.  We aren’t united on this issue at all.  While some would welcome Andy back in a heartbeat, others now prefer Dom.  Yet, Warren would make others happy, if he returned.  It is not surprising to me that we are all so passionate about the guitarist.  After all, they have their own unique styles and represent very important times in the band.  It is difficult to separate the player from the music he was involved with.  For example, Andy will always be part of the Fab 5 and those early albums that many of us fell in love with.  Warren, on the other hand, was part of the album that brought the band back into the spotlight and many can argue that saved the band’s career with the Wedding Album.  Some prefer where the band is now with their latest, All You Need is Now, and would never want to replace Dom because of it. 

This weekly question theme was not as popular as our daily questions, but I am glad that I asked them.  Some things I knew about our community was reinforced, like how people are divided over guitarists.  I learned other things that surprised me, including that people would focus on Duran’s music and history with John.  Starting on Monday, we will go back to daily questions.  In fact, we will be doing brackets for Duran songs as influenced by one of our guest bloggers and guest blog, which you can read here.  I doubt the responses will be as insightful as these have been but I’m hoping that they are fun for all involved!

-A

The More Things Change…the More They Stay the Same

Duranland seems to be in a slight frenzy this weekend over Nick Rhodes’ birthday.  No, it isn’t that people are still wishing him a happy birthday.  It isn’t that.  People seemed to be done with that on Friday.  No, what has gotten so much attention this weekend is his party!  Based on everything I have seen and heard, this seems like it was quite an event!  Pictures of the party are all over facebook.  Heck, even dd.com posted about it!  DD.com’s post described how Nick thought it was “extraordinary” and listed many of the celebrities in attendance.  The pictures posted that I have seen included pictures of various band members along with other guests.  According to dd.com, the event took place at Hamilton Gallery in London.  If my google search is correct, this gallery focuses on photography, which would make sense for Nick Rhodes. 

Now, it seems to me that neither this party nor the fans’ reaction to this party is any different than any other time in Duranland.  Both seem to be rather predictable.  First, no matter where Duran is at, career wise, financially wise, they still manage to throw or be at quite the parties.  I, obviously, wasn’t anywhere near this party or any other party that they have been a part of in their 30 years plus career.  I just find it fascinating that they are still involved in such elaborate affairs.  Perhaps, this says a lot about the band, but I suspect that it says a lot more about Nick.  After all, he has always been the band member to be out and about at elegant affairs.  He is the one who is most often spotted at art shows, at gallery or movie openings, at fashion events or some other but equal type of events.  Thus, this type of event seems fitting, seems normal for Nick.  I’m not judging it other than pointing out that this is common for Nick.  I’m sure it is also more common for the rest of the band in comparison to boring people like me.  Thus, no matter if the year is 1984 or 1994 or 2012, Nick is still being Nick.  What is more interesting to me is that the official website and those who run the news articles felt it necessary to post about it.  It isn’t really news about the band.  It doesn’t get me excited for the upcoming shows this summer or make me think about the fact that they are going back in the studio in 2013.  Why do it then?  Do they want the general public to think that nothing as ever changed and that the band parties at glamorous events with other celebrities?  Does it help their image somehow?  I’m not asking Duran to change.  I’m just wondering why the official website wants to post about this. 

The fans are still being like themselves, too.  Many, perhaps even most, of us have moved past just liking Duran for their looks, if we ever did.  We are far more interested in talking about the music now than we might have been in 1983.  Back then, conversations surrounded a variety of topics related to Duran and only a small percentage might have been about the music.  Perhaps, a lot of fans spent time talking about the videos or some interview they saw or read about.  I’m willing to bet that a lot of us talked about the latest photos to come out.  Heck, I’m sure that a lot of bought one magazine over another based on the pictures included.  I can tell you that I, personally, compared centerfolds, how many pages focused on Duran and more when deciding which magazine to purchase in the grocery store.  After all, as a kid, I had a pretty fixed budget!!!  Anyway, it is fascinating to me that this party of Nick’s is getting so much attention from fans now in 2012.  Is it because we still get all giddy with the latest photos?  Is it because it gives us proof that they are alive and doing well?  Is it because we are so thristy for any Duran news at all?  In all likelihood, it is a combination of all of the above.  What does that say about our fandom?  Has it changed?  Has it evolved at all? 

It seems to me that events like Nick’s birthday bash brings all involved in Duranland back to their roots.  For the band, it means partying with fabulous, famous guests at fancy places.  For fans, it means that we try to find the pictures from the events to get all excited about.  Is this good for us, fans?  Is it good for the band?  Do these events not matter at all?  I leave that for all of you to decide.

-A

*Edited to add:  I just watched a video on DDM that was a member only video with Roger talking about Nick’s birthday.  He talked about how every guest needed to paint a picture or submit a photo.  Why didn’t the official site talk about that?  To me, that is very Nick Rhodes.  No, instead, the official site focused on which celebrities were in attendance.  If they really felt it necessary to talk about who was there, why not include the artwork they gave?  Again, to me, that would have celebrated Nick’s birthday more.*

Celebrating the Birthday Man!

Today would have been my very first opportunity to discuss a band member’s birthday but my writing partner beat me to it yesterday! The nerve…just kidding! It is probably partly my fault since I was on the phone with her for over 2 hours when she could have and probably should have been writing the blog. So, obviously, I had a choice. I could do my own blog wishing Nick a happy birthday OR I could write a completely different blog about something else. I am choosing to celebrate Nick but in a different way. I’m going to post some videos of Nick throughout the years to acknowledge all that Nick has been since founding this favorite band of ours!

While this first clip isn’t Nick on his own, it is interesting to note that despite being the youngest member of the band, he clearly wasn’t intimidated by being interviewed or by the interviewer.  It seems obvious to me that Nick would be the member who is often interviewed, is the spokesperson and the general PR man.  Nick is a natural!

For many people, the look that Nick is sporting in this video is a favorite!  I like it myself!  Here’s a little confession to make!  I was Nick Rhodes for Halloween one year and, as a redhead, this look seemed to be the easiest to emulate.  As I went door-to-door asking for candy, I was annoyed that no one knew who the heck I was!  When I explained to people, they all kept commenting about how I was a girl, dressing as a boy who was wearing makeup like a girl!

While Nick has obviously shown his talent on Duran songs, he has made his mark producing other work, including Kajagoogoo in 1983.  I was always amused that their song, Too Shy, went number one before any Duran song!

In my opinion, Nick’s talent and vision really took the spotlight when he was working on Arcadia.  Interestingly enough, this look was only around during this era of 1985.  I wonder if Arcadia would do another project, would Nick’s look change back to this?!

Breath After Breath is an underrated song from the Wedding Album, in my opinion.  I absolutely adore this video and love the image of Nick typing on a typewriter!!!

While this era isn’t exactly my favorite, I still enjoy this clip.  It shows Nick’s personality and sense of humor as well as his obsession with cameras and pictures!

Of course, Nick’s influence is felt in everything Duran does, but nothing shows this more than Girl Panic.  He was directly involved in the lyrics and the video concept!  On top of that, I absolutely adore his interview of “himself”!

On that note, I wish Mr. Rhodes a VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY!  I, for one, can’t wait to see what he will do next!!!

-A

A Late Blog and an Early Birthday!

I am so sorry for the tardiness of this blog today. There is no other way to say it, today has been one of those days. I’ve been the sole “active” parent this week, and trust me – I’ve been more than active. Some days feel like short sprints, and today felt like a marathon, and I’ve finished last. This morning was especially painful, and on the morning “crawl” to my daughter’s high school something hit the windshield of my car and now it’s sporting a huge crack.  Not the greatest way to begin the day, but not earth (or windshield) shattering.  Oddly though, I had the song(s) Fly on the Windscreen (Depeche Mode) and (I’m Looking for) Cracks in the Pavement (You Know Exactly Who) stuck in my head all day.  Bizarre.  From there it was a nearly endless array of phone calls to insurance people, overseas husbands (it was in the middle of the night his time when he got my phone call…oops!), school meetings, and driving. Oh, the driving, and the traffic. Thank goodness tomorrow is Friday, that’s all I’ve got to say.

Since today is blessedly Thursday and it’s my last blog of the week, an early Happy Birthday is in order to Mr. Nicholas. I hear that 50 is “The Big One”, although the 8.0+ earthquake that is way overdue to hit Southern California is also given that delightful moniker.  Coincidence?? I could say that age is but a number and countless other platitudes, but the honest truth is that when I think about what the age of 50 must look like, it is definitely not Nick Rhodes’ face that comes to mind. I have a very difficult time believing that any one of that band could possibly be 50 yet. It’s very similar to what comes to mind when my oldest comes to me and asks to borrow my shoes. I still see her as the precocious 3 year old in pigtails that wants to borrow a pair of my shoes and stumble around the house. Time goes by so fast, and while I know the band stays firmly in the present – I still think of them as the twenty-somethings I admired from afar, or at least the boys I admired on my bedroom walls.

I’ve always used the birthday blogs as a way to honor the birthday boy in question, write a bit of a love-note, and a way to weave my own personal experiences into the blog. The funny thing is, my personal experiences are somewhat at a low when it comes to Nick. What I can tell you though, is that I’ve never once heard a single fan ever have a bad experience meeting Nick. I know that he has caught the eyes of many a fan at a concert and smiled – and let me just gush and say that no band member has a smile like Nick. When he smiles (which in my opinion is not nearly enough!), his entire face lights up and you feel like the smile is truly meant just for you. Nick has a gift for words and making the tiniest of moments mean something special. He may not ever be the band member we find on Twitter or Facebook, but his genuine nature comes through loud and clear in his short video clips or notes on the band webpage. I have friends who have had the opportunity to meet Nick several times (Faby I am talking to you!), and I adore seeing those photos. There is a love that flows from Nick to the fans that is returned many million times over, and it really does come through with every photo I see.

I too, have believed that I caught Nick’s eye and a grin at a show or two when I was in the UK – and it’s those tiny little moments that make the shows come to mean more than just a concert.  It’s remembering how shocked I was to hear the opening notes of Secret Oktober in Brighton, only to look up after squealing in delight with Amanda to see Nick with an ear-to-ear grin. It’s thinking about how I finally made it to the rail at the very end of the show to hear them play Rio at the same show, and have Nick stand and take photos right in front of us. It was that last show in Glasgow when I could swear he smiled right at me and waved as he left the stage. I’ve decided to claim those seconds as being mine, even though they were probably meant for dozens, if not hundreds of other people as well. We can all claim them, and chances are, none of us are wrong.  

Nick Rhodes has been a part of my life for many years now. It’s a slightly dizzying thought when I count the years his music has been spinning on my record player, in my CD player…or just playing as an MP3 file on any one of several iProducts I’ve owned. He’s a welcome image in my head and heart and I wish him a very happy birthday…..even though I still can’t wrap my head around half of why he likes Second Life.

Happy Birthday Nick!!

-R

Presales, Birthdays, Showcases and Homeschooling oh my!

Sorry that today’s blog is a bit late – as I’ve mentioned, we’re dealing with some kid issues at home.  Today I spent part of the morning getting my son transferred from his current school over to homeschooling for the next school year, beginning in late August.  This is a huge change for all of us, and after much nail biting, worrying and even a few tears, I think this is the best answer for right now.  Wish us luck, send me wine, and words of wisdom from time to time might help.  Right now my son is cautiously optimistic (which tells me he’s really thinking about what it all might be like), and my husband is supportive.  It’s all I can really ask for.  I just hope I’m doing the right thing.  I have no idea what my schedule will be like, but I would imagine that it will most definitely need to change with regards to the blog – I’m still committed to writing each day, it’s just a matter of figuring out when to write.  I promise to keep you updated!  As for the book, I’ve given myself a firm deadline, and that’s that my portion(s) must be completed by late July.  That’s going to be a stretch, but it is what must be done.

Have you sent your birthday greeting yet??  Duran Duran put out a request for short birthday wishes to be sent to duranduran@magusentertainment.com in honor of Nick’s BIG birthday….I sent mine in, and you should get yours in as well.  Deadline is this Saturday, June 2nd. It happens to the best of us, Nick.  Well, not me (yet), but you know…I think you had a bit of a head start!

So that Atlanta date….  I was really starting to wonder if this show was going to happen, mainly because it had been so long since I’d heard anything. Secretly I thought maybe I’d missed the news somewhere, and as I mentioned to Amanda yesterday, I figured that if I’d missed it, I was just going to figure it out later because I was busy having a life outside of my extracurricular activities!  It happens, right?  So the word is that the venue is beginning their “Series” on-sale as of Sunday, June 3rd.  That means that this show is being sold to their subscribers in a sort of package along with several other shows, kind of like season tickets.  Then after that, the DDM presale will begin on June 13th.  While once again I have serious scheduling issues with the presale date – it’s my youngest’s last day of school and that means I am at her school that day (not something I can or even want to get out of), I have no doubt that Amanda and I will figure this out.  Of course, she’s going to be on her way to a little vacation with her parents – but you know, it’s not really a fun or a tour unless we’ve got some crazy drama going on, right?  It’s the challenge that makes it worth our time!  If you are not a DDM member, then the public on-sale date (non-series, single show tickets) is on Saturday, June 16th.  Let us know if you’re going to the show because we’d like to do a get-together and possibly look into group rates at a hotel if there’s enough interest!  Assuming Atlanta works out, that means Amanda and I will be touring the cities and highways beginning in Biloxi, onward to Atlanta, and then ending up in North Carolina.  Have you sent your birthday greeting yet??  Duran Duran put out a request for short birthday wishes to be sent to duranduran@magusentertainment.com in honor of Nick’s BIG birthday….I sent mine in, and you should get yours in as well.  Deadline is this Saturday, June 2nd. It happens to the best of us, Nick.  Well, not me (yet), but you know…I think you had a bit of a head start!

Last but not least, today is Blue to Brown’s big day with their release party at the Cookoo Club in London.  It’s fairly obvious that Amanda and I could not be there, but we send our very best wishes to Dom and his dad for a great showcase.  Have you bought your copy of Blue to Brown yet??  Get out there and get one, then buy one for a friend!  Also, if you want to keep up with the latest Blue to Brown news, “like” their new facebook page!

-R

Duran History 101

This morning, I was treated to a new Daily Duranie “Would You Rather” question on Facebook.  The question was “Would you rather listen to The Devils or Neurotic Outsiders”.  Two completely different sounds from completely different ends of the musical spectrum.   Many, many fans had distinct favorites between the two, which is natural – I wouldn’t have expected any less!  More alarming, however were the comments from those that had never heard of either one.  I know how that can be – you get involved in real life, you don’t pay attention to every single thing that goes on.  It happens.  That said, I simply cannot stand by and not do something to remedy the situation properly.  So today, we’re going to have ourselves a little Duran history, thanks to a couple EPK’s and videos I found on YouTube. (thanks to Nick Rhodes, Stephen Duffy and John Taylor of course!)

A little background on The Devils is probably necessary…and it’s the beginning, which is a very good place to start.  (Be careful or I’ll start singing Do Re Mi from Sound of Music.  A frightening thought by any means.)  In 1978, Nick Rhodes and Stephen Duffy started writing music together, and ran into John Taylor who was performing with a group called Dada.  At some point later Stephen walked to art college, and met up with John Taylor, who was not doing anything at that time – and Duran Duran was born.  The music that we know as The Devils is basically the first album that Duran Duran would have made had the original original original (yes, that wording IS necessary at this point) stayed together.  (does anyone else ever get the feeling that the constantly changing lineups is just part of what makes Duran Duran, Duran Duran?!?)  This my friends, is why every Duran fan on the planet, every single Duranie, should know The Devils.  No, of course you don’t have to like what you hear and I’m the last person to condemn anybody for not loving something Duran has done…. but I do think you have to know where they started to truly appreciate the band they’ve become.

I’ve posted both parts of the EPK that Nick and Stephen produced – they’re on YouTube.  (and I’m extremely thankful for that!)  For the first EPK, my advice is to watch the whole thing through, and then take special care to listen from about 13:20 to the end again several times.  The song is called Big Store, and if you don’t hear Duran Duran in there, listen again.  I have a deep appreciation for the dark and innovative sound…if only they had more clarinet in there…

(psst, Nick!!  I’m free…and I can really play clarinet!!)  

One of the more amusing and interesting things on this first EPK are the slides that are interspersed throughout.  They are from John’s geography field trip, and there are several from streets in Birmingham.  What tickled me personally was that I could actually identify several of these shots and where they were taken.  I guess that first trip to the UK back last May was beneficial in many ways!

On the next EPK, it opens with Dark Circles.  This song would have EASILY fit on the first album.  I love it dearly, and what’s more – it reminds me of why I fell in love with Duran Duran in the first place.  Then we get to hear what Nick coins as being “the most goth sound on the record”.  This is the darkest, scariest song that I think I’ve ever heard, and chances are – I’m going to have nightmares with this song as the soundtrack for the rest of my life.  I think you’re right about the goth thing Nick, and the video makes it even scarier!

(note to self: do I really ever hear music in my dreams?? Good question!)

I’m not sure how much Duran I hear in that particular song, but Nick’s innovative mind is right there, and Stephen’s voice is downright haunting.  Take a listen to Barbarellas and even the Tinsel Ritual, and really look at those old slides – that was the Birmingham from which the band emerged in 1978.  (which is really not all that unlike the town *I* came from here in the states, which is probably why I felt so at home walking around.) They have come very, very far.

And now that you’ve come up to breathe after that long trip down memory lane, here’s some Neurotic Outsiders to wake you up!

The Neurotic Outsiders is a band that John was in during the time he was not a member of Duran Duran.  The other members included Steve Jones of the Sex Pistols, along with Duff McKagan and Matt Sorum of Guns n Roses.  I feel as though this band held much of his healing – as of course did his solo work.  In some ways it seems as though Neurotic Outsiders helped him see that being in a band could still be fun.  Their music was as much hard, dirty rock as The Devils was all about art, experimentation and the bridge between punk and alternative in 1978.  If there was ever to be a cosmic opposite to The Devils, Neurotic Outsiders would be that band.

I hesitate to include this next video, primarily because it’s a Duran song being covered….but I must because I really kind of like what they did with it.  Get through the first verse before you judge, and yes – the video is not an official one.  Ignore the video and just listen.  

The next one is live….

Sorry for the quality, but to get a good idea of what Neurotic Outsiders was like I think you have to see them.  I have to say, they rocked it, and I love that about them.

What is fascinating to me…and should really be to the rest of you as well, is that yesterday we asked if you’d rather listen to Arcadia or Power Station.  To the best of my count, Arcadia won that question by a landslide.  So far today, however – Neurotic Outsiders fans far exceed those of The Devils.  One could argue that The Devils and Arcadia are similar types of music, very “art school”, very experimental; and of course conversely, Power Station and Neurotic Outsiders are both rock, although Neurotic Outsiders comes from a far heavier place.  So, is it that The Devils just isn’t well known?  Is it that Simon isn’t singing??  Even better – what about John Taylor fans out there?!?

Watch the videos, take notes, because at some point, there might even be a test!  Enjoy!!

-R

My Response to Nick!

For the past two days, I had professional development, which means that I sit and listen to the latest and greatest idea in education.  I’m not very good at these type of things because, as a teacher, I’m used to doing.  I’m used to moving and talking constantly throughout the day.  I am not good at listening and NOT responding as I have many things to say about any/every idea presented.  Perhaps, this is part of the reason I chose to do this blog so that I could respond to what is going on in Duranland.  Tonight, the boys are playing their second to last show in Boston.  Yesterday, I became aware of an article/interview with Nick from The Boston Phoenix.  The article can be found here and my responses to the answers are here!  Obviously, some questions did not get my attention as much as others.

In the beginning of the interview, Nick is asked where he is to which he responds about how he is Chicago and says the following, “Actually in Chicago we’ve spent quite a bit of time.  I’m sure I’ll find some trouble to get into.”  As someone who was in Chicago, I have to ask.  What did Nick do?  I know that John and Dom went record shopping but what about Nick?  What about Roger or Simon?  Next time, I think the band should let Rhonda and I know their plans.  It would make our lives more interesting and fun!

Shortly, Nick gets asked about the new album. 

SD: So 2011 has been a pretty big year for you guys, although, not without ups and downs.NR: Yeah, it’s been one of the most exciting years in the Duran calendar in our three decades, I have to say. It all started with the release of All You Need is Now, which we worked on with producer Mark Ronson. I think when you have something that you feel very confident in musically and artistically, it gives you the energy to go forward and do other things and it helps to unfold the origami, because things start to happen when you have something other people are excited about too. We made the film with David Lynch. That’s certainly one of the highlights throughout our career so far. He’s been someone we’ve admired for many, many, many years, so when the opportunity came up to make a film together, that was a complete thrill. We started out playing in America at the SXSW festival. We talked about going there for years, because the spirit of Duran Duran has always been that of an independent band. Even when we’ve made records that have been enormously successful commercially and we’ve been on major record labels, we’ve never lost the spirit that we started out with.” 
My response:  I’m thrilled that they feel confident about AYNIN, musically and artistically, and that should be a highlight of the year.  Yet, the interviewer asked about the ups and downs.  Why not acknowledge everything that Simon went through?  Everything the band went through?  Everything the fans went through?  It could be easily acknowledged and done in a way in which tells how Duran is stronger, better because of it.

Later in the interview, after discussing how other bands had been “borrowing” from Duran, the interviewer asks about the fanbase, which as a student of fandom got my attention!  “SD: I think one of the reasons that you guys, and you know, this is me postulating, you can tell me what you think about it, one of the reasons you’ve maintained this fan base is because Duran Duran is kind of like it’s own little culture, it’s own little land. From the earliest interviews with you guys, you’re always talked about different art and culture, and I think in America, especially kids living in the middle of nowhere, to hear about Andy Warhol, to see Keith Haring on television, to hear about Cocteau and Patrick Nagel, and all these people. This was a big deal for a lot of people who didn’t have access to that kind of culture.NR: Well, I hope so, because I know what other artists from all spheres have given to me over my life. It’s food for me, for my imagination. Nothing makes me happier then sitting in a cinema or going to an art gallery. John, Simon and I all went to the Philadelphia Museum of Art the other day, because I’ve been there several times before and neither of them have actually visited there. I said, “Look, we have a day off, let’s go.” They were both completely up for it. We all left there just floating because seeing the collection that has been that well curated over so many years. I mean they have some of the greatest artworks ever made in there. They have the ultimate Marcel Duchamp collection, including The Bride Stripped Bare, the Nude Descending a Staircase, the Urinal, the Bicycle Wheel, each absolutely extraordinary. But then you sort of wander down the corridor and they’ve got one of the greatest Van Gogh Sunflowers. They’ve got a couple of the best Matisse’s that I’ve ever seen anywhere in the world. You know, if you can bring a little of that information to other people in, I don’t know, in the form of suggestions, or images, or just the notion of it. Then I think that’s great.”
My response:  First, I completely agree that Duranland is its own little culture, which I have addressed before.  I think that Duran has influenced many of us to check out musicians, artists, fashion, etc. that we would not have ever considered.  As much as I was destined to check out art because my mom is an artist, I doubt I would have cared as much if it wasn’t for them.  I also find it amusing that Rhonda and I are like them as well since we try to check out art museums when we can!

This question about the year leads to questions regarding Mark Ronson.  “SD: Back to the new album briefly, I have to ask, I think a number of people have asked, and I know you guys obviously don’t have any plan or anything. But as a big music fan, like you guys are, I’m sure you can think of any number of sequels or trilogies of records that bands have made with producers. I know a lot of people are wondering if you guys might work with Mark again. It’s been a while since you’ve done two in a row.NR: Of all the producers that we’ve ever worked with, I have to say, Mark is the one that I think suits Duran Duran best. We’ve worked with some amazing producers, we really have, we’ve been very lucky. Sadly, the first few albums produced by Colin Thurston, and then the third album by Alex Sadkin, who have both passed away, but they were extraordinary teachers.
SD: For me as well…
NR: Yeah, amazing, amazing, amazing people. But, of the people we’ve worked with in the last couple decades, Mark just suits us better. He has an understanding of so many genres of music. He has incredible style and great taste and he really, really gets what Duran Duran is about. So, I sincerely hope we work with him again. We stay in constant touch. We’re so fond of him on a very personal level, as well as musical level. He’s really something.”
My response:  I completely agree with Nick that Mark is the producer that suits Duran best.  I think he gets THEM and I think that he gets US (the fans).  Thus, I, too, hope that they work together again.  🙂

Of course, this leads to brief discussions about both Red Carpet Massacre and Reportage.  “SD: I like the last record, I like Red Carpet MassacreNR: Me too.
SD: …I actually think it’s great Simon record.
NR: Yeah, a few people have said that. John and Roger feel that their presence was diminished on the album, I understand that.
SD: I feel like maybe the fans kind of felt like that. It felt a little anti-climatic post-reunion?
NR: Maybe. It was very programmed. You see, the genesis of that record is quite interesting because we made an entire album with Andy Taylor. Which is called Reportage…”
My response:  I’m not surprised that John and Roger felt like their presence was diminished.  It felt that way to me, too.  Thus, it didn’t feel like Duran to me no matter the quality of the song.  It wasn’t what I think of when I think Duran.  I also agree that it was very programmed, which again makes it anti-Duran to me.  Of course, Duran can, has and should use technology but it should have something organic, something more musical. 

The interview continues to say:  “SD: Which is coming out when?NR: It may come out, it would need mixing, it would need finishing a few things, but then what happened was we were just literally going to do a couple tracks with Timbaland and we got in there and Andy didn’t turn up for those sessions, and so we ended up doing them without a guitarist, we obviously added guitar to the tracks later, but we recorded them without guitar, wrote them without guitar. That set the mold, really. Had Andy been there, I think those tracks would have probably started to sound a little different in the first place.
SD: They sound really cool, and if that record had come out in, like, ’99 no-one would’ve batted an eyelash, but I think when you have this sort of legendary rhythm section back together it felt like, you know, they are a little bit under utilized on that record, theres just little moments…
NR: Yeah, I understand. For me, that album was an experiment. For everyone in the band, that album was an experiment. It was how to merge the Timbaland beats with Duran Duran. And the expense of us doing that was the rhythm section became different. Obviously they both played on the album. They played synth bass on some of them. Some of the drums were programmed by Roger…
SD: There’s some of that on the new album too…
NR: Yeah.
SD: It’s not like it’s unlike Duran Duran to have some synthbass.
NR: Yeah, but on that one it was largely the makeup of the sound and I think we definitely sacrificed something but we work as a unit and whatever we feel is right for Duran Duran, and I mean honestly, if we decided we wanted to make an album that was just guitars and strings and we decided, no, we’re not gonna use any synths on this, we would do it. It’s a case of the time and we felt with Tim that he was one of the most interesting people out there making contemporary music at that time. We’ve always loved dance music and so…”
My response:  Obviously, I have no idea about the quality of the songs on Reportage, how much work it would be to finish or even if they can finish it and release it, legally, but I would still love to hear it.  It might also be a good way of releasing another album sooner rather than later, if there aren’t legal issues with it, as most of the writing and recording appears to be done.  Nonetheless, it says something to me that if Nick, who was RCM’s biggest supporter, is saying that “something sacrificed” when they made RCM. 

Nick goes on to make a really good point and one that I must remember: “And certainly, the other point about working with Timbaland is that had we not made that album, I don’t think it would have lead us to make this new album with Mark.”  If this is true that Duran needed to work with Timbaland and needed to make RCM as a step before working with Mark and making AYNIN, I am grateful it happened.  I do think that sometimes things need to be one way before things are able to go a different way.  Maybe RCM was the lesson they needed to learn.

Then, of course, the interviewer turns to the current tour and the current setlist.  Oh boy.  “SD: I have it on good faith that you guys are gonna be playing “Shadows On Your Side” in Boston. Can I put that in print?NR: (laughs) We haven’t played it on the American tour at all yet. The trouble is with set lists, and I’m sure you could talk to any artist, you must know this yourself, if you have have a lot of material, it’s hard enough to condense it into something that is a little less than two hours. But when you want to put in a song that is possibly a real fan favorite, but maybe not with the broader audience, it’s hard to find places in the set to put them in. For example, recently we have been playing a song “Tiger, Tiger” from the third album which is instrumental. And the reason we started playing it was to create a little three minute spot for people to Tweet live during the show onto the screen. And it has been a fascinating moment in the set.
SD: Gives Simon a rest.
NR: So we thought, perhaps we’ll replace it and we’ll do “Secret October” instead because it has a vocal on it and we said we would play this song. And of course, Simon said “I don’t want to do it and have Tweeting going on whilst I’m singing.” Whereas musically, we are just creating a soundtrack and I think that’s fine, visually. And so we took out the Tweets and we did the song, and the song went down really well. But then we realized that a lot of people were missing the Tweeting thing because a lot of it was interactive and thats part of modern shows. So you have all these things …all I’m really doing is making excuses for you. We probably won’t. We could play it instead of a number of things but I’m not sure what would give.”
My response:  Clearly, they don’t want to put in anymore “fan favorites” than they already have for these US dates.  Obviously, they feel that they need to appeal to the “broader audience”.  As Rhonda and I have both mentioned, I think this is lame.  If you play enough hits, that “broader audience” will be happy.  Duran should worry about keeping us dedicated fans happy and keeping us going to shows.  Then, to hear Nick talk about the discussion surrounding Tiger Tiger versus Secret Oktober, I got even more frustrated.  Yes, I can understand Simon’s point of view of not wanting people to tweet during him singing.  I tweeted during Tiger Tiger but that felt uncomfortable, too, as I’m ignoring the band playing.  If you want to have the tweet thing in do it when the band is not on stage.  Have people tweet while waiting for the encore to start but don’t let that get in the way of the fans hearing a song they desperately want to hear!  Ugh!

Speaking of Twitter, the interviewer asked about the band’s involvement.  “SD: It is interesting. I think both Simon and John have been doing it since around the release of the record. It is interesting to kind of follow along…NR: I think John particularly loves it. I think its really something that he’s been able to focus some of his energy on. I know he’s always taking little photos and putting them up when we’ve arrived somewhere, or we see something interesting. He was tweeting from the Museum the other day. I’m all for that. I have a concept for tweeting which would be very much against the grain of what people like it for, so people may really not like the idea of what I might want to do with it, and I keep threatening to do it. For me, it would be a complete experiment so I would enjoy it, and I think there may be some people out there that would see what I was getting at, but it’s much more of a one way street. It would be that I was really just publishing certain things and not really getting involved in conversations about them. I’m not sure if that’s in the spirit of it, but I may do that.
SD: Well it’s difficult, I think, to have in-depth conversations. I think John tries to answer peoples’ little questions and things from time to time, but I don’t think you can get too in depth. The other side of it is, I think for some people, and I don’t know if you fall into this category or not, but some people see that artists being on Twitter constantly, kind of affects their mystique a little bit. Where it was so hard to get information about somebody ten years ago but now it’s like…
NR: Well I feel that way very generally anyways. We were talking about when were growing up as kids and the photos of artists we used to see, whether it was David Bowie or Iggy or the New York Dolls or Lou, they had a real mystery to them because there weren’t that many photos. You might see the occasional live photo from a concert or you’d see David Bowie and Iggy Pop in Moscow together or a picture of a couple people on a train having lunch and this was really as far as you got into their world and you had to then use your own imagination as to what else they might be doing or what it was like in the studio and what they were recording. Now I do feel with web cams everywhere and everyone with a mobile phone during the show, every second of everything is recorded from all these different angles and published everywhere, it’s an overwhelming amount of content. In a way, you definitely lose focus because people are watching dreadful live videos with dreadful sound quality and then saying, “Oh well that was that, wasn’t it.” As opposed to something that was being produced with beauty and care. And its not that I’m completely against it because this is a very modern world where this is what’s happening and that’s that, but as regards to what it has done to mystique, yeah, its shattered it into a million pieces.
SD: Yeah that’s true, it’s a strange game. I can’t think of a band, current day, that can maintain that exactly. You have to, obviously, evolve with the times somewhat, but it’s interesting with some groups, it might not be in their best interest to be too involved with that.
NR: I think you have to embrace new technologies and use them to the best of your ability, and use them artistically. With our online presence we’re always looking to do different things. We launched Second Life some months ago which was initially launched as a completely non-commercial project. It was literally an arts project. We built a universe for people go in as Avatars and communicate with each other, really. And so far I have to say I’m thrilled with the results because it seems to be a really good breeding ground for ideas and for artistic statements. The costumes that people are wearing in there are spectacular. It’s worth going in to look at that alone. When they have parties in there it really is pretty remarkable, it’s an utterly surreal world where anything goes and they’re having an amazing time. So, you try to do these different things with the website we’re going to relaunch that soon, so its version 2.2 or 3.3 or wherever we are now, and there have been some huge improvements there. The live stuff and the Tweeting. During the live shows I take pictures of the audience every night which has now become quite interesting because there’s a whole section on the site where you can see the audiences from my point of view from the different shows. We’re always looking to do things and find ways to make it a bit different. Everybody out there is putting everything up they can.”
My response:  I can definitely see Nick’s idea of tweeting being VERY different than what is normal, common, expected.  My guess is that Nick fans would eat it up!  Yet, ideally, fans would want some conversation and it doesn’t seem like Nick does, for whatever reason.  I also agree with Nick that technology should be used and embraced but that it does have its drawbacks and has taken some of the mystery out of life.  That said, I still don’t get Second Life.  I don’t understand why he is so thrilled by it.  He says that it is filled with artistic ideas.  Really?  Someone who is involved in it tell me how. 

The interview ended with a question about John’s book.  “SD: Have you seen any advanced writing in Johns book?NR: No, nothing. I think it’s probably best that I don’t and I’m sure John would feel the same. I guess eventually there will probably be a full set of books. I don’t know when I’ll be doing mine. I don’t know when Simon will be doing his but I imagine there will be a set, and that will give you all the different perspectives as to why Duran Duran is what it is.” 
My response:  I’m thrilled with the idea of one day having a set of autobiographies from the band members.  Maybe then, we would have a good idea of what went down and how it was!

So, readers, read the entire interview, and come back and tell me your responses!  Were there questions that I didn’t focus on that I should have?  Were my responses different than what you would have said?  I would love to know!

-A

Who is the “Paul” around here?

The more I think about Talking to Girls about Duran Duran: One Young Man’s Quest for True Love and a Cooler Haircut, the more I realize the book really IS about Duran Duran…or should I say the fandom surrounding Duran Duran.  The book is really excerpts about Rob Sheffield’s life, and he himself claims to be a huge Duran Duran fan, as are probably most, if not all of you who read this blog with any sort of regularity.  I find myself nodding my head in agreement after re-reading and re-hashing some of more intriguing parts of his book (to me, anyway).  One section in particular had me chuckling.  Rob writes a chapter about The Beatles, but more specifically Paul McCartney.  In all fairness here, I have to say that my all-time favorite band outside of Duran Duran is probably The Beatles.  They’re the one band I’ll never have the opportunity to see live, but I have seen Paul three times.  I don’t doubt that it’s not even remotely close to what I’d feel if I saw The Beatles themselves, but sometimes, you have to make due with what you’ve got.  And I do.

Mr. Sheffield makes some fairly outrageous claims that Paul is the only Beatle that people argue about.  I say the claims are outrageous mainly because I’ve never heard anyone argue about Paul…unless you count all of that “Paul is dead” stuff from the days of Abbey Road, Magical Mystery Tour and the White Album…but I don’t think that’s what he’s getting at here.  So yes, I think it all sounds outrageous.  Who knew?!?  According to Sheffield, nobody knows what to do with Paul.  (again, I scratch my head and keep reading.  Perhaps the answers will come to me if I read the section again!) He goes on to mention that Paul was the bitchiest Beatle, and that the other Beatles thought he was bossy.  This, I probably wouldn’t argue about.  He uses the example that in the 1990 Anthology documentaries, George Harrison “bristles” in his company.  (just for that one comment, I’m going to go and find the videos and watch them again, because now I’m fascinated.  Thanks a lot Rob.)  I do recognize though that Paul seemed to be the one to force the rest of them to get their shit together.  He was the one to tidy up, the one to finish the work and see it through.  I’m with him there, mainly because I can see the possibility.  Here is where the chapter gets funny, and yet remarkably recognizable…

“Paul is the bossy Irish sister in the Beatles.  Every Irish family has one of thse, and it’s always the oldest girl.  My cousin Graine in Dublin explained to me that this sister is called “the Alsatian,” which is the British Isles term for the breed of dog that Americans call a Doberman.”

“Any Irish brother can recognize what Paul was doing in the Beatles.  He was the Alsatian.  He kept coming up with more work for them to do, dreaming up big, daft ideas, sometimes brilliant (Sgt. Pepper, Abbey Road), sometimes involving walrus costumes (Magical Mystery Tour).  He got mad if he didn’t think they were pushing hard enough.  It always cracks me up that some people describe “Getting Better” as a cheerful, optimistic song.  Nagging the other Beatles about how things could be better, a little better, all the fucking time – that sounds like Paul to me.”  (Sheffield page 154 – Kindle edition)


Hmm.  So naturally I’ve got to wonder, who on earth could be the bossy Irish, or Alsatian in our band??

Of course my mind (and yours too, if you’ll admit it!) went right for Mr. Rhodes.  The Controller. The Alien Vampire himself.  Truth be told, I’ve never seen or heard of Nick being angry.  Perhaps he does get angry, but I wouldn’t really know.  When I think of the word Doberman though, Nick’s face really doesn’t come to mind.  I can’t really think of a dog breed that is synonymous with Nick Rhodes, actually.  (perhaps that’s a good thing??)  I know just from the things Nick has said, himself, in interviews and in certain Q&A’s in the tour book for the tour that has yet to take place that he continues to seek perfection.  Not a horrible quality, but I wonder if he drives the other members of the band crazy…

So in order to be thorough and fair, I must consider the others.  What about Simon?  Well, in MY mind, at least up until May – I considered Simon to be a loose cannon of sorts.  I never knew what he was going to be like or say next.   I don’t really think of Simon as being a perfectionist – anyone who wears an eagle belt buckle one moment and a blue plaid flannel the next can’t honestly be a perfectionist, can they?  Although, he IS a scorpio, and that alone does speak volumes.  How do I know?  I *am* one.  We can be sweet one moment, and vicious the next.  Catch me on a bad day, ask the wrong question and I’ll skin you alive without even thinking.  Catch me on a good day and I’ll probably agree with you that yes, the blog is crap and that I should probably be paying people to read it.  Then I’ll thank you profusely and we’ll be friends for life.  Admittedly, sometimes I should really take deep breathing more seriously.  I would imagine that Simon can sometimes be the same, given the stories I’ve heard over the years. The trouble is, lately my opinion of Simon has changed quite a bit.  I think he might actually be far more of a grown-up than I ever thought possible.  I don’t know if it’s circumstance or if it’s that he’s really changed…or if it’s more that I’ve just never seen him outside of the US and our crazy behavior before.  So, could he be that Doberman?  Maybe…but I’m not sure.   I just can’t imagine him as the bossy one though.

Roger.  Yeah, I’m just not seeing that one at all.  I love the guy, but I don’t think he’s ever been bossy in his entire life.  I know a few fans that have had less than stellar moments with him, but ultimately I just can’t see anything more out of him than perhaps annoyance at the others for not being able to get along.  I picture Roger as the trusty Golden Retriever of the group.  He’s with them until the end, or until he just can’t take it anymore and they’ve got to retire him.  I still think of Roger as the sensible one (although I happen to know he has a crazy moment or two every now and then!), which is probably why I like him so much.  My husband is the same way.  Nope, can’t be Roger.

That leaves John.  John is emotional, and I love him for it.  I think he wears his heart on his sleeve, and while I suspect John might be just a bit high maintenance, I can’t really see him as the bossy one.  He might be the one to argue his way through situations, and he might be willing to step up and offer a differing point of view, but I highly doubt he’s the one burning the midnight oil in order to finish an album, or insisting that the band take a different direction just to keep things fresh, experimental, and new.  I think John will try new things to a point – but he still wants the band to be Duran Duran.  He seems to know they’ve got a sound that’s worth fighting for, and worth owning up to.  I wholeheartedly agree.

So I’m still sort of mulling this one over.  I really do tend to lean toward Nick, but what about the rest of you?  I hope to read your comments when I return from vacation!  Happy 4th of July to the American’s reading – enjoy those fireworks safely!!  I’ll be viewing mine from Mission Bay in San Diego!

-R
———————————–

Works Cited
Sheffield, Rob, Talking to Girls About Duran Duran: One Young Man’s Quest for True Love  and a Cooler Haircut, Copyright July 2010 Penguin Books Ltd, London.

Dear Nicholas

I think we all know what today’s date marks in Duran Duran world.  It’s Nick Rhodes’ 49th birthday.  As the “baby” of the band…he’s the last one to make his way over to the other side of 50, and he’s still got a full year to go!  He put out his own special birthday message today (I love that he’s taken to doing little video blogs as opposed to writing, tweeting or having a Facebook – he always has been the more visual one of the group, hasn’t he?), and within the message he makes mention of the fact that next year, he shall be hiding on this day.  To that, I have this extra special comment:

You can run Nick…but you really cannot hide.  Especially from Duranies.  We’re resourceful people.  Just saying.  


I see Nick so much differently than I do anyone else in the band.  I don’t pretend to know him – in fact, the closest I’ve ever really been to him has been across a table as he signed my Astronaut album back in 2004.  He was especially kind, as he was the one to wave my daughter and I in from the doorway to the table as we waited our turn to get to the signing table.  “Come on over”, he said as he smiled and looked me in the eye.  It was only then that I had to take an extra breath just to make sure I wouldn’t pass out on the way up to the table where all 5 band members took their turn signing the various albums, CD’s and other things that passed by.   Nick took the extra second to say hi to my daughter, and made mention that she was one of the first little ones (at the time she was 7) he’d seen that night with their moms.  To which I replied, “Have to raise them right!” as I moved on.  It was a brief moment, but a moment all the same.

I had a brief “affair” with Nick back about the time his hair was orange back in the 80’s.  (I’m sorry Roger.  I strayed.  It’s true…)  Never mind that my affair consisted of taping the pinup I had of him to the very center of my wall above my dresser mirror, and making sure it was the last thing I saw before I shut my eyes at night…to me and my then 12 or 13 year old self, it was a sordid fling!  I can still envision the pinup to this day.  Nick was there in all his glory, orange mullet-ish style hair, a grey suit with a light purple or lavender tie and that gorgeous 80’s toned makeup, complete with a purplish eye liner that I would have killed to have.  Yes, that pinup was a thing of beauty.  Occasionally I’ll see someone with that picture on their profile and to this day it still makes me look twice.   The affair was hot and toasty until one day, I saw that Nick had changed his hair color – it was probably in an interview or as a picture in another magazine, and it was over.  Back to Roger I went, and Nick was then relegated to another corner of my room once again.  I never really strayed again after that.  No, my friends, it was Roger that left me next.  *insert dramatic sigh here*  But, my fondness for Nick continues to this day.

The thing with Nick is that it’s very clear his life is well-measured and controlled.  I never, ever see the man in any kind of a stressed out craze.  Ever.  We joke that he never sweats on stage.  I honestly believe it!  I was at the recent shows at the Mayan theater here in LA, and at the Fox Theater in Pomona, and I watched Nick as he would play, then take a second, grab his little camera and snap pictures of the audience.  The man wasn’t even glistening and from what I could hear, he never missed a note.  Count me as impressed.  I can’t even brush my teeth and walk at the same time without tripping.  (ok, I can’t even walk and talk without tripping, so perhaps I’m not a fair judge of what’s impressive….)  He never appears out of breath, or anything more than calm, cool and collected.  I don’t think I ever look like that, even when my house is completely quiet, sans children!!  What I really need from Nick are lessons in how to remain calm.  Is that just a Brit thing?? (I ask because I noticed the same thing out of the Brits while I was there in London – it can be complete, utter chaos in the tube station and yet they all just stand there, calm, cool and collected.  I need to learn that skill!)  Every time I see Nick do a video update or blog, I think to myself that he is the phrase “Keep calm and carry on” personified.

It’s been a good many years since I’ve seen a technicolored Nick hair-do, and even more so since I’ve seen pictures where he is smiling in quite the same abandon that he once did when he was young.  I just don’t think I realized just how “in control” Nick really is until their reunion.  I remember reading the tour book from Astronaut and noticing he was a list-maker: a trait that I share with him (and probably countless others of you out there).  In my case, if I don’t make lists…every single day here…I forget things.   Like picking up my children at the correct time, or remembering to get 2 out of the 3 things I need at the grocery store, for instance.  I have to wonder if it’s like that for Nick.  Probably not.  He’d go insane in my household.  Then again, most people would.   I wonder if he misses coloring his hair in every shade of the rainbow?  The one thing I miss from Nick are his glorious smiles.  Every now and then we’ll get a picture of his smile – he really has a great one and he should use it more often.  In his little birthday video blog, he smiles when he talks about hiding next year – it was great!

A few of us have taken to calling Nick “The King of Spin”.  It’s true, and I don’t mean it to be quite as derogatory as it might sound.  He can make ANYTHING sound like it’s going to be fantastic.  I learned that with all of the press and updates he did for Red Carpet Massacre.  Granted, many of you out there agree that the album is fantastic – so to you – this wasn’t hard to do.  For me and a good many other people, however, Nick was at his best (and his worst…) during these updates.  If I had a dollar for every time he called it “grooooveworld”….well, I’d own the Rolls that John took out for a drive along the embankment yesterday.  (actually, I wouldn’t want it.  Too big. I’d sell it and buy myself a Maserati convertible instead!)  He is very good at PR, and Nick always seems to measure his words and phrases before he says them. He doesn’t seem to speak with his emotions, and he definitely doesn’t wear them on his sleeve the way that some others in the group might. (*cough, cough* John Taylor…)  I would love to learn the skill of making say, my son’s math grades for instance, or the challenge of parenting a teenager, sound like amazing, fantastic things that I am learning from each and every day.

Finally, there are a few of us that really think Nick is an alien. Do I need to remind you of the spaceship in the Astronaut video??  He seemed very much at home in there!  Just watching him in that small space started making my heart palpitate, and no, definitely NOT with excitement.  No sweating, always knowing what to say…that very pale skin that I’m SURE has never had a blemish of any kind….the fact that I’m pretty sure the guy never sleeps and never seems to age much….yep, he’s got to be alien.  He’s probably convinced that the human race can’t be saved at this point.  I would have to agree.  We’re beyond help.

Some believe that Nick and Simon are the heart of Duran Duran.  I don’t know if I would completely agree, but I will say that Duran Duran wouldn’t be the band they are without Nick.  I am very glad my little portion of the world includes him!  Happy Birthday Nick – and remember, you can’t hide next year.  We’ll find you.   🙂

-R

Happy Valentines Day and other updates!

A hearty (yep, it’s another pun!) Valentines Day greeting to all of you!  Truth be told, Valentines Day is really more of a holiday for my kids than it is for the adults in our house.  I always get the kids some little treat, and tonight we’ll do a chocolate fondue for a special dessert, but otherwise the holiday really goes unnoticed.  That’s not to say my husband forgets, but with his schedule, it’s very hard – and I’m OK with that.  The trade off is that next weekend, we’re going to my favorite place in the USA – and that’s Napa, California.  I can certainly live with that.

Today wasn’t a disappointment – Duran Duran “gifted” us with a rather lengthy Nick Rhodes update this morning!  If you haven’t seen it – you can view it here  Nick shares news of tracks being mixed, and tells us that different tracks are going to go on various products.  That seems to corroborate earlier information that Wendy Laister, their manager, indicated.  It would seem that the band is putting out several different versions of the physical album, and on each version there will be different tracks.  While yes, I know fans out there are likely unhappy with the idea of buying 10 different albums in order to collect all of the songs, if you look at it from the business standpoint of the band, it’s a brilliant move.  Why fight to have 350,000 people buy a single copy of the album when you can focus on getting 35,000 fans to buy 10 copies each, or 75,000 fans to buy 5 copies each?  Wait…is my math right? (yes, yes it is.  Good for a Monday).  Yeah sure, I suppose that following Duran Duran can be a pricey habit.  So can drug addiction, buying cigarettes, being an oenophile (a connoisseur of wine) or even going to Starbucks every day.  It’s about choices, people.  No one is forcing you to buy all 10 versions…or however many versions they are.  It’s just nice to have the option to do so!   Nick also shares their excitement (John Taylor’s excitement) over playing Coachella – can’t blame him there, and he is welcome to send Daily Duranie a postcard or love note from the festival.  I’ll be sure to catch whatever videos I can find on youtube!   While there is absolutely no chance I’ll be braving that show, it’s going to be a great day for them I am sure!   For all intents and purposes, Nick gave a great update, and I’m looking forward to hearing more about these secrets and surprises that will be coming our way….

Before I part ways this morning (it’s morning in California!), I would be completely out of character if I didn’t poke fun at not one, but TWO members of Duran Duran today.   Once upon a time on duranduranfans.com , a list was formed.  This list consisted of statements or musings that we had decided Nick Rhodes would never say.  I believe the thread title was “Things We’d Never See or Hear Nick Rhodes Say” – I have no idea if Robin archived the thread, it’s from a while back.  In any case, it became quite the lengthy list – and some of the comments were very silly, and others were more serious in nature.  One thing that I am sure made the list – and would now need to be removed *gasp* – was the word “Y’all”.  Never in my life did I think I’d live to see the day Nick would use the word “Y’all” in a sentence…and he has not once, but twice!!  *more gasping*    If that weren’t enough (and rest assured, it really kind of is!), today I was on Facebook and saw that my darling Roger Taylor had left a Happy Valentines message as his Facebook status.  In his status update, Roger used the word “lurve”.  I had to read it twice to make sure he’d actually written that word….and then I paused….because once again, it’s a word I never thought he’d use.  Hmm….I wonder how that sounds with his British accent…..

The apocalypse is coming, people.   This is just more proof.   Prepare.  Repent.    😉  *tongue firmly in cheek*  Don’t send hate mail.  Just get a sense of humor.

Happy Valentines Day!!
-R