My story as a Duranie really begins in 1984 when I was 8, going on 9, as I’m a bit younger than Rhonda. 😀 I do remember hearing many of their songs on the radio in 1983, including their new singles like Union of the Snake and New Moon on Monday. I liked them just fine, but I wasn’t a Duranie quite yet. I needed two big pushes for that to happen. The first push came in the form of my best friend at the time. We were constantly together, which is pretty impressive as we didn’t go to the same school and couldn’t easily get to each other’s houses as a major street separated us (which also separated the school districts). Luckily for us, though, our parents got along and were pretty accommodating when it came to driving us. My friend and I used to listen to the radio when we hung out. One of our favorite activities was hanging in my backyard and taking turns swinging (I had one swing in the backyard). There we would often talk about the music we were listening to. One night, we heard Save a Prayer and I literally could not get the chorus out of my head. Could either one of us tell you that it was by a band named Duran Duran? Nope. It was funny to us, though, that I kept singing it and singing it. We vowed to pay attention the next time that song was played. Strangely enough, I don’t remember who learned the band name or even if it was connected to Save a Prayer but I do know the next song to catch our attention: The Reflex.
Like many kids, my best friend and I used to spend the night at each other’s houses, especially on Friday nights. In my house, this meant that we would crash in the room we called the toy room (in reality this room housed the laundry and my mom’s art studio as well as my toys). There was a very small TV that we would watch. Again, like many kids in 1984, we tuned into Friday Night Videos. At some point, they started airing a new video by Duran, which was the Reflex. We fell in love with it. Seriously. We were obnoxious about it, too, as this was around the same time we got MTV, which acted as my second push to being a fan. From that time on, we tuned into MTV and Friday Night Videos as much as we could to catch a glimpse of this video. If we were not together, we would literally call each other on the phone to tell the other that it was on. Strangely enough, this really isn’t that much different than calling, texting or emailing your Duranie friends to alert them to new tours or album news. Of course, from this focus on videos, we discovered the old clips and fell in love with all of them. At this point, the Reflex was a number one hit and we, officially, started calling ourselves “Duranies”.
From this point on, our friendship was focused on Duran Duran. Our sleepovers consisted of watching Duran footage, which including their videos and eventually Sing Blue Silver once VCRs came out. When our mothers forced us out of the house to go to the grocery store, we went to see what the latest issue of Bop or Tiger Beat had on it. In some ways, we competed with each other as it was exciting to see who got the newest poster or a paperback book that described the band’s “long” history. We ate up all of the information we could and tried to outshine the other with who had the band member’s birthdays memorized or who knew the kinds of cars John Taylor liked. That’s another thing. We both loved John. I tried to like Simon for awhile but that didn’t stick. You might be wondering if that caused a problem for us. It didn’t. We were cool about it since it meant that we both had good taste! We could both *squee* over the same pictures or the same facial expressions he made in the videos. In this way, we reinforced each other’s fandom.
In 1985, I moved away from my best friend but my love of Duran stayed. As the years went by, we still talked (though haven’t for years now) and I remember how bummed I was when she moved away from Duran. I was shocked when she told me that she had taken her posters down. I, of course, questioned whether or not, I should do that, too. I obviously decided against that and the rest is history. ;D
So, what about the rest of you? What is your story? How and when did you become a fan? Rhonda and I appreciate those people who have already shared their stories but we definitely want to hear more. Keep ’em coming!