Category Archives: touring

Touring Suggestions

Like many Duranies, I am dying for a show.  As I’m sitting here in my living room, I’m hoping that the band and its management, whereever they may be, are talking about the upcoming tour that I assume will happen.  Before they finalize all of their plans, I have some suggestions for them.  😀

Like real estate, a good tour, in my opinion, depends on location.  While I have loved seeing shows in fun places like New York City, New Orleans, Atlantic City and Las Vegas, I would really be good with smaller cities that are closer together.  Some of the fun cities mentioned here are the most expensive ones.  I want to have less expensive places to go in order to go to more shows.  I’m sure that the band would like this as well.  The close together aspect is also an important one as driving for hours between cities isn’t fun, even with the best company.  Driving wears us out and we can’t have as much fun during the actual show and that isn’t good for anyone!  Therefore, I may recommend spacing out shows as needed in order to allow the fans some down time!

Venue choices are also important.  I have seen the band in large arenas, smaller theaters and large club type venues (House of Blues types).  Truly, I would pick the smaller theaters because I love the intimacy of a smaller show but I require actual seats.  I’ll be on my feet during the whole show but would love to sit while I wait.  Again, this allows me to have more energy and have more fun during the actual show.  On top of that, it means that I don’t have to fight for space, which happens at any and all general admission shows.  This type of battle usually doesn’t work well for short people like me!  The last benefit to having actual seats is that I don’t have to get there super early to get a good spot.  This extra times allows more time to spend with other fans, having a nice dinner, getting a drink or two and relaxing.  I think that the dedicated fans deserve this!

While the locations of the shows and the venues play a role in how great the show is, the band makes the real difference.  I always have more fun when the band actually interacts with the fans in the audience.  Who doesn’t love making eye contact with Simon, John or even Dom?  Who isn’t looking for a way to get Nick or Roger’s attention?  Of course, the set list makes a big difference as well.  Personally, there are many songs that I have heard enough to last me a lifetime (I’m thinking here of songs like “Hungry Like the Wolf”).  I also don’t need any songs that force Simon to do something unnecessary like the finger licking thing of “Come Undone”.  I’m sure that many Duranies would disagree with this but this is how I feel.  One way to make most Duranies happy, however, is to play more obsure songs like “Late Bar” and “Secret Oktober”.  Heck, I think most of us would be happy with a larger variety of songs played.  I always prefer songs with lots of JoSi moments, though!

Lastly, the band could include better customer service, which begins with the announcement of the tour dates.  Can we please have some advance notice before the tickets go on sale?  I don’t need a month but a few days to a week would be nice.  Then, can we include more to the VIP packages?  I would need a strong reason to pay for VIP at this point since they are SO expensive and the little extra gifts are not doing it for me.  Of course, this leads me to discuss merchandise available for purchase.  Many of us like to buy t-shirts but they need to both fit and look good.  The material should be soft but not see through.  The image on the shirts should look nice.  One thing that the band should sell is a means of getting the show on cd or dvd or both.  I would LOVE to have a copy of every show that I have been to. 

While I’m sure that I haven’t covered every aspect of touring, I know that I would be a much happier Duranie if some, or all, of these suggestions were followed.  (By the way, I’m free to tour anytime after the first week in January and have vacation the third week of April!!!)

-A

The Games People Play

As promised yesterday on Twitter, I’m revisiting the subject of our fan community today in the blog.  Ok, so the reality is that there’s no breaking Duran news for me to report….I admit it.  😉  In all seriousness though, is it just me or does anyone else out there in Duranland (Duranverse?  Durankingdom??) notice how cutthroat the community can be at times?

I have no frame of reference for other fan communities, as I only have enough time and energy for one truly favorite band!  I just know that after so many years of being a Duran Duran fan and being involved in the community – it’s very hard to ignore the constant game playing that seems to take precedence over friendship whenever the band is involved.   That said, why is it so important to make sure that you have the “most”?  For instance, the most pictures with the band, the most drumsticks from Roger, the most meet and greets, or the most and best information with regard to where the band is staying or hanging out after a show.  Are those things really that important, and do they really make someone more or less of a fan if they do or do not have them?  I’m not sure I can really answer that question within the framework of our blog…so let me bring up a few thoughts to ponder:

Why is it that men don’t seem to have a problem “sharing” the band?  What I mean by that is specifically – when I’m on a board, or at a show and I want to know something, whether it’s where everyone is staying before a show, where I can find a picture/unreleased song/album, etc, where everyone is going after a show, etc – if I ask just about any Duran fan that is male – they have absolutely no issue telling me.

What do we really get out of playing “the game”?  Honestly.  Think about that.  Yeah, I suppose you could say that you’ve got a boatload of drumsticks at home, or an entire album filled with pictures of yourself with all members of the band….but really, does that REALLY get you anything else in life?  Call me crazy, but if you’re willing to throw other fans, possibly other friends under the bus in order to get closer to the band…what are you really getting out of it?

Lastly for today, when does it end?  Meaning – at what point do you think the band will become less of a trophy to win and more like something special that connects all of us?  The band is something to be celebrated, not something that should require strategic networking, secrecy and deception.  I’m not saying that we should all go to our nearest Duran Duran board and broadcast that the band is staying at such and such hotel – that’s just stupid – but on the same token, the next time someone comes up to you after a show and says “Hey, where are you guys hanging out after the show?”  Maybe, just maybe….you’ll feel comfortable telling a fellow fan.  After all, at this point in our lives, we should be celebrating the fact that the band still tours and plays a great show.

Tomorrow (barring any exciting news from the band…):  A set of FAQ’s for any “new” fan to a message board!

-R

Fluff!

Today’s blog is full of fluff…and I make no apologies for that.  It’s one of those days where I can’t think clearly enough to put anything hard-hitting together, and so I’m going to just gush instead.  🙂

Has anyone seen the photos or video from the bands’ appearance with Mark Ronson yesterday?  (if not, you should check out gimmeawristband.com for photos and youtube for video – I found one of Planet Earth that was great and I’ll post the link below!)  The band looked great, and I loved that Mark was all in his 80’s glory as he was playing the guitar – I would swear I had similar hair at one point during the 80’s.  😀  A couple of comments:

*The Eagle has landed…on Simon’s belt, again.  I couldn’t ignore that the infamous eagle belt has been resurrected.  Some love it, some don’t…but it was there in all it’s glory.

*Plenty of JoSi moments for those who like that sort of thing…it was good to see John and Simon smiling and happy, and it did make me wish I was there!

*Nick was wearing….sneakers???  Really?!?   Jeans can NOT be far behind, my friends.  All that really did was give me permission to ditch the heels, save my forever aching feet and be proud in my own sneakers as I stand in GA this tour…which I will!

*I loved John’s t-shirt…so much that I already own one of my own.  Love that we’ve finally gotten rid of the Red Carpet Massacre-wear.  I’m so used to seeing the guys on stage in basic black/white, to me it’s how they belong.  I’m sure they’ll have something different going on for the next tour, but I do love a man in a suit.  😉

*Musically (oh yes, they did play didn’t they?), they sounded great.  I thought that maybe the beginning was a little slow – but given that the video was taken from a live show and of course the sound wasn’t balanced the way it would have been had it been taken directly from the sound board, I thought they sounded great.  I have to wonder what Mark thought about being on stage, playing with the band he seems to idolize so much….that’s a subject I would LOVE to hear more about from him if given the chance.

I hear more dates are to be announced soon, and the video from yesterday only makes this fan more excited!

Promise to back to my more analytical self tomorrow…..

-R

Tour Dates in South Africa

Today, there was an official Duranie alert as the band announced tour dates in South Africa during December.  While I’m not anywhere near there, announcements like this get me all excited as they do for countless other Duranies!  People are thrilled with the news, even if they are unable to go, as it is clear that life in Duranland is about to pick up.  It seems we won’t have to wait long for official word about the album and tour! 

Fans have been discussing and analyzing both the announcement on duranduran.com and the email sent out about the presale from Duran Duran Music.  Two lines, in particular, from the official announcement have captured people’s focus.  The first line that grabbed people mentioned that this mini-tour is the beginning of a huge promotion campaign in regards of the upcoming release of their latest album.  There seems to be universal consensus among fans that this means that there will be a ton of tour dates to follow!  The only question seems to be when will those dates start and where exactly they will go.  Will they do more shows before 2011?  Around Christmas?  Will they do them in the U.S.?  Europe?  People’s minds are already guessing about when they will be coming close to them, geographically, and then plotting about how to get to those shows, myself included!  The other sentence that has captured people’s attention can be summarized by saying that the new album is going to be released shortly after these tour dates (December 8th-12th, by the way).  Does that mean that the album will be released this year or in the beginning of 2011 as they have been promising?  Time will tell but that certainly doesn’t stop the fans from speculating! 

No matter what specifically happens in terms of an album release date or tour dates, I love when alerts like this come out!  I get excited for what is coming and love that other fans do, too!!

-A

Rumors, gossip, alerts and other things that excite us

This is a Duranie Alert.  


Words we all live for, as Duranies.  Typically those words mean major news – and even more typically, a tour!  Longtime fans are used to the drill, or so we think.  We know that when dates are “announced”, they show up on the front page of DDM or DD.com and at that point, we have mere hours to get ourselves together enough to buy tickets, presale or otherwise.  The funny part is – and really, it IS funny if you stop long enough to think about it – we all tend to completely lose our heads when a tour is announced.  The saying “Keep Calm and Carry On” really should be posted everywhere on Duran Duran message boards, maybe it would help!!  

In any case, it has been quite a while since the last US shows have been announced.  They played in Las Vegas and Orange County last July, and they haven’t really played a public show since.  I think it’s nearly to the point where people are going to explode without a show. (or at the very least they’ll need to enter counseling.  Well, at least *I* will.)  With that in mind, any piece of news that is thrown into the fan community is kind of like when you go to a koi pond and throw a breadcrumb in the water.  The fish go into an absolute frenzy to get it!  

The past few days, weeks really, there have been little bits of news to be read here and there.  Nothing earth shattering, but simple things like John appearing on Richard Blade’s show on First Wave, or Ronson announcing that Duran Duran would be playing with him for two UK dates, the fact that both Ronson and Richard Blade have mentioned that the upcoming album would be out in time for Christmas, and the fact that all of the boys have been out in public in one way or another.  Then there is the gossip, which has notably increased just a bit this past week.  Rumor about possible South Africa dates were circulating on a board or two, and some other gossip about Duran Duran looking for a lighting director for a yet to be announced tour.  (funny how we never hear WHEN the tour is supposed to be – but just that someone knows someone else who was contacted as a possibility for the job)

All of it makes the Duranie, especially the show starved Duranie, (yours truly included) have their radar up and at the ready.    Then I laugh when I think that the possibility exists that in just a few short weeks – I may have to send my husband that YouTube video I came upon yesterday!    

Like the rest of you, I wait in preparation, and I look forward to blogging about the experience!  

Duran Duran vs. My Husband

Today is one of those days where I have a million things to do and about two hours to finish them before I become a chauffeur for my 3 children.  In between my driving, I need to clean the house, do the laundry and cook dinner….almost impossible.  That said, today’s blog is going to be short and sweet.
I found a YouTube video (aptly named Bruce Springsteen vs. Your Husband) yesterday – I swear the person who created it was eavesdropping in my house the last time Duran Duran toured.  It’s word for word (sans the language) how any discussion involving my touring goes with my husband.  I am having trouble getting the video to inbed here properly – so here is the link…if I can figure out how to get it to work here, I will post it later when I have a free second.

The fact is – as I mentioned above, I have three kids and 5 schedules to try and work out before I go on “tour” so to speak.  (the idea of MY being gone for a week is ridiculous.  The longest I’ve ever been gone has been 5 days – and my husband swore that wouldn’t ever happen again.  We’ll see dear.)   I have to start planning nearly a month before I ever get on a plane or in my car to go anywhere – and the schedule that I have to leave behind for my husband to follow is color coded, marked in red, highlighted, crossed out….and he typically follows NONE OF IT.  My kids go absolutely crazy, and they are typically begging for my return about 3 hours into my trip.  They love their dad, but I’m the one that keeps the ship afloat around here, and the kids know that.

One would think (one who isn’t obsessed with a rock band, anyway), that if it were this much trouble to tour – that I’d just give it up and see them when they were here in town and convenient.  The fact is, and this is the one thing the video misses – is that it’s really not about the band anymore.  Yes, I love going to their concerts, and yes, I enjoy getting the little bit of interaction that I have with them when they’re up there and I’m close enough to the stage to enjoy. However, when I go to see Duran Duran, it’s also “Girls time”….something I don’t have at all here at home.  For the short time I’m “on tour”, I only have to worry about myself.  I can actually let down my hair a bit, I can eat first without having to make sure everyone else is served and settled, and I can have a full conversation with my friends without it being interrupted half a dozen times.  I get back a small part of the person I was before children, a husband and responsibilities beyond myself – and that my friends, is golden.

So that’s why *I* tour, and that’s why it’s worth the effort.  Yes, it’s about the band, but it’s also about me.

-R

Should they tour now or later?

Last night, I saw a new “rumor” posted on the Duran Duran Message Board about Duran playing a show in South Africa in October.  Interestingly enough, there is also a thread on the fan community board about whether or not the band should tour now or after the new album has been released.  This thread includes a poll so that Duranies can indicate their preference.  Surprisingly, only about two-third of the Duranies who answered wanted them to tour now.  I don’t think this would have been the case a few years ago.  2006 is a good example.  It was right after an extremely heavy touring year and in between albums.  People were excited to go see them at any of the dates during the fall of that year, even though no new music would be played.  What is different now?  Perhaps, the fans burned themselves out by all of the shows they went to.  Maybe, they are interested in other bands.  Their lives might be filled with other things right now.  Maybe they really do just want new music as they are sick of the setlist always being the same.  Obviously, there can be a variety of reasons for people to not jump at the chance of shows right now.

The Duranies who indicated that they wanted shows now, new music or not, often expressed what was experienced earlier in the week on this blog.  There is something special about a Duran show, especially when the band is “on”.  For the authors of this blog, good Duran shows provide a high like no other.  The shows can provide two hours of non-stop singing, screaming, dancing, laughing and, if you are really lucky, a moment or two of interaction with a band member or two.  Of course, I have often said that Duran shows are like 3 shows in one (preshow meeting, show itself and post show fun with your close friends).  Shows give us a chance to meet other fans or see people we haven’t seen in a long time, which usually happens in a preshow get together or dinner.  After the show, while on the high, we find fun wherever we can.  ;D  The whole experience can be summed by a quote from the song Astronaut, “There is nothing gonna ace this.” 

I would love to see Duran play a show or two in South Africa.  I realize that I would not be able to attend those shows as they are too far away but they would give me hope that they would be coming closer to me before too long, new music or not!

-A

Is Anybody HUNGRY?

I think I’ve possibly sunk to a new low in using a line from my least favorite Duran Duran song ever as a title.

That said, my point in using that line was to bring up touring, or in this case – a lack thereof!!  Yesterday it was announced by duranduran.com that they are going to be doing two UK dates with Mark Ronson, the producer of their next album which is still being mixed at the time of this writing.  After cursing briefly, I thought about how long it had been since I last saw them.  You would think it had been 12 years based on how much I’ve complained recently, but the truth is – I last saw them in July of 2009.  Yes, that was just last year, and yes, I DO realize that I could probably get therapy for this affliction that I seem to have.

The truth of the matter is, touring is like my drug.  I’m completely addicted to it as long as the music is good and the crowds are supportive.  I’ve been to shows where the crickets in the building have been louder than the audience on hand, and those shows can take the wind out of you like nothing else.  I’ve also been to shows where the audience has been so wicked crazy for more that the pure rush I get out of just standing there almost brings me to tears at the end of the night when the band leaves the stage.  I walk out of the venue with enough energy to keep me going the rest of the night into the following morning – which I HAVE done before – and I’m ready for more the next night.  It’s those shows that keep me coming back for more.  It’s a high like none other that I’ve ever experienced, and I’m happy to say that it is a Duran Duran show where I’ve had that high the most often.  The interesting part of this whole equation is that it is absolutely not every single Duran Duran show where I get that incredible rush or high.  I’ve walked out of some Duran Duran shows almost completely deflated, and some others – I’ve just felt “eh”.  So, that makes the chase even more interesting, and even more so like an addiction.  When you first take a narcotic for the first time, regardless of what it is – it takes very little to make its effect known, and typically the high is so great, that every single time an addict chooses to take drugs again and go after that high – they are truly chasing after the same high they experienced the very first time they took the drug. It may take more of that drug to create the same experience, and it’s likely even more frustrating when the high isn’t as intense.  For me, this silly band provides the exact same experience. So, when it’s been over a year without a decent show in sight – keeping in mind that I have been to a couple good concerts since my last Duran Duran show – asking if anyone is a little hungry almost seems like a tease!

Today I ventured over to the fan community to see the boards and read what’s been going on, and it appears that I’m not the only one chomping at the bit for a Duran Duran show.  There are more than a few that would love even ONE show to go to, and naturally – most of us are here in the good old US of A, where the band is NOT doing shows with Mark Ronson.  Of course, I don’t think anyone really faults the band for playing the UK and we certainly don’t blame the UK fans for being excited – they should be!  I just think we want our turn.  Over, and over and over again like the truly addicted folks we are.