Category Archives: vinyl

Happy Record Store Day 2018!

How many of you out there are holding the Duran Duran Budokan vinyl in your hands from this year’s Record Store Day?  I am!  Have you all taken a look at it?  Listened to it?  I’m listening to it as I type this blog!  I will do my best to offer my thoughts about this lovely little release.

Before I ponder the merits of this piece of vinyl, I have to share a little about my Record Store Day experience.  First off, I was not sure if I was going to make this year’s event.  It has been one of those weeks in which some other aspect of my life sucks up the vast majority of my attention and time.  In this case, my week was all about a day of action on Friday on gun reform with some political action surrounding sexual assault earlier in the week.  By the time, I arrived home on Friday night I was so tired that I almost could not stand up.  Therefore, the idea of getting up early to head to the record store made me cringe.  I needed sleep, but I also knew that I would kick myself later if I wasn’t able to get my copy.  So I set the alarm and hoped that the seven hours of sleep would be enough to function.

At 8:15, I left the house to head to the record store which had opened at 7.  Needless to say, there was quite a line by the time I arrived.  A kid around at the age of 9 or so counted the people at one point and declared that there were 70 people in line.  So I took a deep breath and thanked the lucky stars that I brought coffee with me.  Soon enough, though, I discovered that I would have been okay as a local coffee shop was supplying free cups of coffee and chocolate covered bacon (which I declined as a vegetarian).  By 9:30, the freebies also included free beer.  Well then.  My tired self drank my coffee and tried not to think about the fact that my feet were absolutely freezing and that my feet, legs and back were screaming at me for standing outside three days in a row for hours on end.  Finally, I was allowed in and found what I had come for in a matter of minutes.  Success!

After that, I grabbed breakfast out with my parents, took a nap, and made my enormous list of things to do, anxious to get back to the music.  Finally, I had the chance to open my prized possession and really look at it.  The cover is a fascinating piece of art by Japanese artist, Tadanori Yokoo.  The SFMOMA describes his work in the following way, “Electrified by Pop art and American graphic design, Tadanori Yokoo has always delighted in the violation of visual taboos. Mixing traditional Japanese pictorial methods with Western representational motifs, Yokoo — an illustrator, graphic designer, printmaker, and painter — forges visual relationships among images originally rooted in seemingly disparate worlds.” (https://www.sfmoma.org/artist/Tadanori_Yokoo)  

This description makes perfect sense to me as the cover features not only a picture of the band but also plenty of other images that do not seem to go together at all, but keeps you looking and thinking about why those images as well as their placement within the work.  The back cover features the same images but instead of a red focus it is more of a blue with the sense of overexposure of photos.  Fascinating.

Of course, John Warwicker also added to the overall feel of the release by adding his graphic design on the sleeve.  My reaction to it?  The use of colors along with the combination of geometric images really catches my attention.  What really interests me is the way Duran Duran and Budokan are written.  In the case of Duran, both the R and the A are only written once but big.  Why?  It certainly draws my eyes to that part of the name.  (For the record, I’m personally a fan of the letters “R” and “A”!) Budokan also features those enlarged letters but then also has tiny u, d and o.  I so wish I could get inside of the head of an artist to figure out how they come up with elements like this.  It certainly makes a unique and clever logo.

So what about the album itself?  My initial reaction is a simple one.  It brought me right back to the Paper Gods Tour and how I felt at the shows I was lucky enough to attend.  Some songs, in particular, transported me back, including Paper Gods, Pressure Off, Hold Back the Rain and Sunrise/New Moon on Monday.  I swear that as I was listening, I could picture the trees shown in the background of Paper Gods or the confetti pouring over the crowd in Pressure Off.  The song that really made me stop, though, due to the goose bumps that popped up on my skin was the New Moon on Monday part of Sunrise.  While obviously not a new song, it captures a feeling I had a lot during this tour, which was acceptance.  During Astronaut, everything expressed newness of the reunion whereas as Red Carpet Massacre felt so divisive that it was all about holding on.  All You Need Is Now, on the other hand, seemed to be about proving oneself, at least for me because the blog was much newer.  Now, with Paper Gods, I have accepted where the band is and where I am in terms of my fandom.  I waved my torch for Duran a long time ago and won’t ever stop.

My only question is why include the old songs that they did.  I get Save a Prayer since it was connected to the Universe Alone.  Hold Back the Rain returned after not having been played for a long time.  But why A View to a Kill?  Why I Don’t Want Your Love?  I’m not sure what I would have put in their places, but I did wonder why.

So, what did the rest of you think?

-A

Diamond in the Mind…is anybody hungry for a wolf?

The Vinyl Factory released some photos of the new Diamond in the Mind Vinyl!  Take a good look at the pretties!!all-copy front-copy1back-copy

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At first glance, I really like the front cover, in all of it’s sparkly splendor.  I did spy the photography included in the packaging – particularly the nighttime “spotlight” photo and the one of the two women on the railing, which look like Nick’s work.  I must admit that when I saw the photo of the women, I chuckled.  Branding, branding, branding.  It still works!!

What I didn’t chuckle over, were the track listings.  If you care to take a gander, you might notice a few things:

On the outer sleeve itself they list View to a Kill instead of A View to a Kill, they leave “The” off of Reflex, and instead of writing the full title to (Reach Up for the) Sunrise, they left it at Sunrise. Small things, really – and I might not have even noticed or cared had it not been for something they did to another song on one of the inner sleeves that I know will boil the blood of many detail-oriented Duranie out there:  they mistakenly renamed Hungry Like The Wolf to be Hungry Like A Wolf.

Small errors?  Yes, definitely…and perhaps most of them were intended.  Let’s face it, even the band shortens the titles to their songs when writing about them or doing set lists, and quite frankly WE destroy them when we shorten them to mere acronyms.  ITSISK, anyone???

As an aside: I remember being virtually spanked by my good pal “Moocher” on DDF (see…I can’t stop the acronyms!!) because I consistently shortened Red Carpet Massacre to RCM.  His point was that the band titled the song (and album) for a reason – and that I was being rude by shortening it. To the band, the songs are like their children, and I was basically renaming their precious by only using their initials.  How would I like that?  Hmm…how do I sign my blogs again? 

In any case, perhaps the titling was done purposefully, and in the scope of things I don’t necessarily think it s huge problem or should matter.  Leaving “The” off of The Reflex probably won’t ruin anybody’s day. However… I think there’s a line in the sand when it comes to getting the title wrong. Hungry like Wolf?  Really??  Maybe Vinyl Factory doesn’t realize that to many a Duran fan, that sort of thing is akin to scratching nails down a chalkboard. Do they have any idea how many times a journalist has gotten the title wrong in articles? Interviews? Even on videos shows?  Probably not.  While I’m sure that to many it’s not a big deal, and perhaps they chalk it up to the same “artistic license” I mentioned before…the very fact that they weren’t consistent in their labeling (on the other covers and even on the albums themselves the title is correctly listed) tells me that it was an error.

I have to think that someone in Duran’s camp had to sign off on this at one point or another, and maybe they saw it and didn’t see it as a big deal, or maybe they didn’t see it at all because mistakes do happen…but as someone who has been a fan for a very long time and knows how fans react, I kind of think people will notice. We’re funny that way.

-R

 

 

 

Diamond in the Mind, Revisited!

Attention vinyl addicts!!!  Today Duran Duran announced that they will be releasing their first live album on vinyl in more than a decade. This is a limited edition, double album with a diamond-dust, screen printed gatefold sleeve.  The original press release can be found on duranduran.com, but I want to include Nick’s comments regarding the actual diamond-dust found on the cover.

Since the title is ‘A Diamond in the Mind’, when it came time for the packaging design, it occurred to me that we should use some real diamond dust on our cover artwork. I really wasn’t sure I would get away with my request, but working with the incomparable Vinyl Factory to produce this special edition, they rose to the challenge, called their local diamond dealer and voila! We have that extra little sparkle that certainly brightened my day, when I first saw the artwork proofs.”

There will be 2000 copies available, ready for pre-order from The Vinyl Factory. (link goes to order page)

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Track listing:

Vinyl Track Listing 
Before The Rain
Planet Earth
View To A Kill
All You Need Is Now
Come Undone
Blame The Machines
Reflex
Girl Panic
Is There Something I Should Know
Ordinary World
Notorious
Hungry Like The Wolf
Sunrise
Wild Boys
Rio

-R

 

 

Showcasing Fandom: Kevin, Collector

As the convention rolls closer, it seems to me that most of the events of the convention from the banquet to the Late Bar club to the movie screening of A Diamond in the Mind all have a certain type of fan in mind.  Fans, like myself, who enjoy having fun and partying a bit.  Yet, we realized that other fans might have other priorities and one of those priorities might be showing off collections or exchanging memorabilia with other fans.  We asked if people were interested in this type of activity as part of a questionnaire that was sent to every attendee.  From there, we have compiled the list and am hoping that people will seek each other out on Saturday of the convention.  One of the people who might be interested in this activity is Kevin, a Duran collector and a convention attendee.  In fact, Kevin is one of the members of the convention committee!  Not only was he so generous to sign up for this convention insanity but he volunteered to share how he expresses his fandom with all of us, which is collecting.  I love that his focus seems to be collecting the vinyl.  After all, it does capture both Duran’s musical talents and ability to create a vision, visually.

How do you express your fandom?
I collect anything Duran Duran related.

Where do you go to find Duran Duran memorabilia?
I go to record stores and to record conventions that might have Duran Duran memorabilia.  (Daily Duranie note:  They have record conventions?!  How cool would this be?  I should look for those!!)

Why did you choose this means of expressing your fandom?
I enjoy the music the most.  I like the artwork and special packaging Duran Duran has released over the years.

Tell me your fandom story.
I became a fan the first time I heard Hungry Like the Wolf on the radio in 1982.

How else do you participate in the fandom?
I am an official member of the fan community and also registered on several message boards.  I have been to 29 shows.  I am currently on the Durandemonium convention committee.  I use Facebook for fandom.

What has been the reaction to your expression of fandom, with collecting?
I get a lot of smiles and hear “that’s cool” reactions.

Do you express your fandom outside of the fan community?
I have a Duran Duran personalized license plate.  I talk about Duran Duran to my non-Duran friends and co-workers.  Anyone who knows me knows I’m a Duran Duran fan.

Where and how do you share your collection and your fandom?
I talk to and will show anyone my collection.  I don’t have any pictures of it, though.

I Won’t Turn You Out if You’ve Got Someone Else

I have a notebook of blog topics that I keep handy as I never know when an idea, a topic might hit me.  Of course, I don’t necessarily know when I might write about these topics as I will gladly move the more general, can talk about anytime topics out of the way for news or, at least, something new.  This weekend, I had hoped to talk about the packaging in the TV Mania vinyl that US fans who ordered it are now starting to receive.  Unfortunately, I can’t do that.  Why?  My vinyl arrived.  Unfortunately, big time, I am missing the booklet that is supposed to be included.  To say that I’m disappointed is an understatement.  Rhonda tells me that this booklet is a must have.  I’m sure.  I emailed Vinyl Factory and hope that they can just send me a booklet.  If they can, it will still take awhile to get to me.  🙁 

As I thought about this last night, it dawned on me why this happened.  It is karma.  It is psychic ability.  It is some supernatural power that Vinyl Factory or Nick or someone has.  What sin have I committed?  What crime have I done to warrant such a thing?  What stupid loser move did I make?  It is simple.  I cheated.  I have cheated on Duran.  How did I do this?  It is simple.  I bought concert tickets to see some other band!  Oh my gosh!  The horror!!!  It’s true.  I did.  I’m confessing.  I bought tickets this week to see Depeche Mode in August in Chicago.  Now, I’m sure it wouldn’t be that big of a deal but…Depeche hasn’t just been any old band for me.  They have a special place in my heart.  You see they were the first band that I saw in concert.  There, of course, is a reason for that.  As soon as I became a Duranie and saw Sing Blue Silver, I wanted to go to a concert.  Yet, I didn’t know about Duran’s 1984 tour as that it is just when I was becoming a fan.  By 1987, for the next Duran tour, I had moved further away from Chicago and knew that there was no way that my parents would drive me hours to go to a concert.  Plus, there was no way that they were going to let their 12 year old go to a concert by herself and they didn’t want to go with.  Nope.  I had to wait until I was old enough to go to a show by myself.  I was declared old enough by 1990 when I had turned 15.  Duran definitely wasn’t touring then but Depeche was.  I did what any inexperienced concert goer did in 1990 to secure tickets.  I called Ticketmaster when the tickets went on sale.  After calling for hours and getting nothing but busy signals, I got lawn seats for myself and two of my friends as every other ticket was sold.  The plan had been made.  My mother would drive us and drop us off.  Then, we would meet up with my mom’s friend’s son who was also at the show.  He would drive us back.  The venue for this first concert ever was also the first venue I saw Duran play in 1993.  Anyway, when I saw the Depeche dates for this summer/fall, I knew that I wanted to go, especially since they were returning that ever-important venue for me on a Saturday night.  Perfect.

Now, of course, I’m a much more experienced concert ticket buyer and goer.  Heck, sometimes, I think Rhonda and I should write a book about what we learned from being Duran fans.  One whole chapter would be devoted to presales, concert tickets, concert venues, etc.  When I was younger and inexperienced, I would just figure out the time the tickets would go sale then go online and let ticketmaster give me the “best available” and move on.  I know better now.  Research pays off.  I truly do believe that.  First thing I checked out was what were the presales and what did they offer.  I discovered that Depeche was doing VIP packages.  Hmm…how much were they and what did they offer?  Now, as much as I like Depeche and I do, I knew that I wouldn’t be going for a VIP package unless it was truly reasonable and it offered just the right stuff.  I wouldn’t want to break the Duran savings account too much for this.  Here are their VIP packages: 

VIP package: Around $350

  • One reserved ticket in the first 10 rows
  • Exclusive pre-show reception, including appetizers, beer & wine
  • One parking spot per order (where available)
  • Specially designed concert shirt
  • Limited edition tour lithograph
  • Official tour program
  • Depeche Mode VIP commemorative laminate
  • VIP commemorative ticket
  • Exclusive tour gift item
  • Early entrance into the venue
  • Crowd-free merchandise shopping
  • On-site VIP host

Tour package: Around $250
  • One reserved ticket in the first 20 rows
  • Specially designed concert shirt
  • Limited edition tour lithograph
  • Official tour program
  • VIP commemorative ticket
  • Exclusive tour gift item
  • On-site VIP host
Now, for me, the most important thing for any VIP package is the seats.  So the VIP package gives a seat in the first 10 rows and the Tour package gives a seat in the first 20 rows.  I noticed that it didn’t say that the Tour package seats would be between rows 11-20.  Thus, it seemed possible to get a seat higher than row 11 by not buying the VIP package.  I also noticed that you wouldn’t know your exact seat until later.  This is how it worked with DuranDuranMusic back in the day.  Now, of course, with Artist Arena, you know your seats when you buy, which I really like.  A lot of the rest of the packages seemed to be about merchandise, which is fine for those big Depeche fans.  In general, though, their packages seem a lot like the old DDM packages with the VIP parties.  The cost were similar as well.  I am surprised that they didn’t offer better seats, though.  With DDM, VIP got you rows 1-5.  Even now, with Artist Arena, you generally get rows 1-6.  In this case, it doesn’t seem like their packages are that much better than Duran’s, in my opinion.  I did think one thing was weird.  You didn’t have to be a member of a fan club or anything to have access to these packages.  This makes me wonder if Depeche’s biggest fans will buy them or will scalpers buy them and sell for more money.  No matter for me as I opted to just get regular seats. 
My research was not complete.  I looked to see what presales were available.  For Depeche, there were three presales:  Citi Card Members, Amazon purchasers and Facebook followers before the general sale.  Interesting.  I didn’t and wouldn’t know if there were some seats in each section that would be saved for each presale or would the Citi Card Members get the best seats, no matter what.  I had to hope that they did save some as I could only try for the Amazon one.  Before the day of the presale, I had printed out a venue map, which was a good one with rows clearly marked as well as seats so I knew exactly where the seats were when they came up on the screen.  I also checked into various ticket brokers to see if there were tickets available from that Citi presale and there were.  Thus, I knew what I could get that way and what the tickets would cost.  I knew that I had options that way and that I didn’t have to just take whatever came up.  
During the actual presale, the first tickets that came up were in the very back section, row XX or something like that.  Horrible.  Yes, they were cheaper but still.  Horrible.  I tried again.  This time, I got tickets in the front section but all the way to the left side, row Z.  Not horrible but not great.  I debated for the 1:30 minutes they allow you to “complete the page”.  I figured I would try again.  This time, I got the center/left section, row 13 with the first two seats on the center section aisle!  I couldn’t believe it!  Obviously, I grabbed them!  This will be the sixth Depeche show for me and definitely the best seats I have had for them.  The best part I think is that I didn’t need to pay for the Tour package to get them!  I also truly felt my research had paid off.  I knew the venue well enough from the map to know what were good seats and what weren’t.  I knew what might be available and what might not due to those VIP packages and the other presale.   Clearly, I have come a long way when it comes to buying tickets from that 15 year old buying tickets through Ticketmaster’s phone system.  All of my Duran ticket buying experiences taught me well!  I am looking forward to the show because I think Depeche gives a good show and I have these great seats, but I’m also looking forward to walking in that venue that started my concert going.  It will feel like returning home.  Now, all of that said, I’m still blogging about Duran.  I’m editing the last research chapter for the book that uses Duran fandom as the case study.  I’m still planning a DURAN fan convention.  I promise that my Duranieness is still solid and isn’t going anywhere.  Can I please get my booklet for TV Mania now?!  Please?! -A

Dancing on the Valentine

I know, I know….Dancing on the Valentine is probably not the most creative title I’ve ever used.  Chances are, we’ve used it before…and I’ll bet we’ll use it again, too!

I cannot lie, this “holiday” is one of my least favorite, ranking right up there with Mothers Day.   In our house, this holiday has become one that I celebrate for the kids. I buy each of them some treats and cards, and sometimes I’ll bake cookies or heart-shaped things, although I don’t do that as much now that they’re all in school and so busy I don’t even see them!  Tonight is opening night for my daughter’s musical (she is the dance captain and one of the Angels in Anything Goes for her school.), so for the past couple weeks I’ve barely seen her – she’s at school from 8am until 10 or 10:30 at night, every single day including Sundays right now. My husband really is not one for grand romantic gestures – I definitely did not marry a romantic and he doesn’t go all out for anything. My husband is practical, logical and pretty much all of the things that I am not. While this used to really bother me – I would be jealous of my friends getting flowers, cards, surprise lunches – I’ve learned that it’s just not what he does, and there is plenty that he does do on a daily basis, like support of all of us, and I am thankful. I just feel that the pressure to somehow be attached to someone or go all-out to show an emotion that should probably just be naturally present every day is a little ridiculous. That’s also how I see Mothers Day, as an overblown holiday.

The sweetest part of my day was when my youngest stumbled out of her room this morning and wandered over for her morning cuddle. I wished her a Happy Valentines Day and she remembered that she had a small card for me that she made yesterday at school and insisted that I open it right then. She is learning how to write her name – the letter “S” still gives her trouble, but she was able to write MOM on the envelope – I smiled and I know I’ll keep the card, along with the other cards I’ve gotten from my kids, in my special drawer in my closet. Yes, I’m that sentimental – I keep them all, along with some other notes and things I’ve gotten in the mail from friends and people I genuinely care about over the years. I love those handwritten notes, no matter how short they might be – I keep them.

I suppose that is also how I view things from the band – whether it’s an RT on Twitter or one of their blogs that we almost never see these days, or even the Katy Kafes. They are all special for one reason or another. It’s not often that those things come along, so when they do – I take the time to enjoy them or save them however I can. I hope that no matter how old I get, or how long I’ve been a fan, that those things still excite and thrill me. I still get excited to see one of them online and tweeting, never mind if they acknowledge anyone!

That is one reason why I smiled extra-wide yesterday when I saw that Duran Duran has a special treat planned for Record Store Day on April 20th. Not only is it my very favorite Duran Duran song of all-time….It’s also in vinyl of my very favorite color.

That’s right, Is There Something I Should Know is being released in blue vinyl in conjunction with it’s 30th anniversary. (!!!) The single will also have Faith in this Color on the B side, just as the original.  I’ll admit it, this is really exciting for me. I was thrilled to see it – and it was just the right thing I needed to see on just the right day.

Sometimes I swear the band is reading my mind. Then I slap myself and come back down to reality and notice that my daughter is sitting here at the table with me eating every last one of the chocolates I just gave her this morning!!!

Time for me to spring back into mom-mode, so I’m off. Happy Valentines Day everyone, and take a little time to appreciate the small things!

-R


I almost forgot!!

I can’t even believe this…but I almost forgot to blog today.  I don’t know exactly how it happened, between the 3 hour phone call with Amanda (no, I’m not kidding) my laundry mountain and the 40 mile round-trip to pick my oldest up from school…but I almost forgot.  I was leisurely doing my late-afternoon perusal of the various social networking sites and realized “Crap, the blog!!!”

So, here I am.  Not quite late since it’s only about 9:30ish at night on the east coast.  Definitely not early.  Not really on time, either.  So sorry!  (now you probably realize what it’s like to be one of my children, or even my husband when it comes to dinner.  *gasp*)

I have two things to talk about briefly…first of all, we’re finally getting vinyl!!  I was really becoming concerned that the band had forgotten those of us not exactly born with a silver spoon in our mouths who couldn’t afford the Super Deluxe, Stamped in Gold, Signed, Numbered, Fingerprinted with Blood, Sweat and Tears Vinyl edition that is selling for ridiculous sum of money.  Wasn’t that about $450 US or something??  Anyway, I was waiting for the Super Cheap, Not Stamped in Anything but Vinyl, Not Numbered and most DEFINITELY not Signed or Fingerprinted Vinyl copy for Regular Ole Folks edition.  I seem to recall starting to fidget about whether or not we’d ever get one ’round about April or so…then I put it in the back of my mind, next to the area where I think about cooking dinner.   Then all of the sudden I read the other day that yes, vinyl is coming soon!!

As for dinner, well…it’s coming soon as well.  Just as soon as I start considering what I can make super fast before the husband gets home.

I can’t wait to get the vinyl.  I don’t care that it’s not coming with all of the little extras, I just want a copy of the superb album I already have on CD.  That will be enough for me, and maybe, just maybe, I’ll even allow my husband to open it and play it once or twice.  Then I’ll stare at it for a while before I finally put it in it’s home, next to the rest of my collection.

Then of course, comes the subject of my 3 hour long conversation with Amanda this morning. It’s been a long time since we’ve had a real, honest-to-goodness plotting and scheming session.  Truly, we haven’t had to – we’d planned the UK trip with nary a problem until we actually GOT there and had to deal with the reality of cancelled shows.  We didn’t have to hide a thing from….certain family members who must remain nameless at this time, because he’d given his blessing extremely early and even without bloodshed!  Today however, I found myself giggling and thinking about possibilities with excitement.  I didn’t realize how much joy I get out of planning something I know I probably shouldn’t be doing!!  It’s half the fun!

What are we planning, you ask?  Oh.  Oh I couldn’t possibly say at this juncture.  All I can tell you is that if what I have in mind works, debauchery in the midwest will be imminent.  😉

With that, I must get dinner on the table.  I have buttering-up to do!!

-R

A new find!

Yesterday I was out with my family – we were in San Diego at Horton Plaza and we came across a music store, of all things!  It was a Sam Goody, which shocked me because I thought those were a distant memory – I didn’t realize there were any left on the map!  Naturally my husband and I were excited to go in the store, and my kids were less-than-thrilled.  (this is odd to me because when I was 11, well…I was a big Duran Duran fan…the music store was my paradise!!)

After convincing everyone that we wouldn’t take more than 4 hours in the store (do you hear my kids groaning in the background?  I still sort of hear it….), we trudged on in, and I immediately made my way to the “D” section of the CD racks.  What a sight to behold!!  Not only did Duran Duran actually have their own section – but it was FULL!  *gasp*  No, it wasn’t full of just the new album in all it’s finery, there were plenty of other goodies mixed in with it as well.  I found Greatest, the new remasters of Rio and Big Thing (I bought that one), some tribute type albums, and a used copy of Essential Duran Duran Remixes, in the original packaging no less.  I snagged that along with the box of Big Thing, and went on my merry way, thinking that I’d scored big.  I went on through the store (the Sam Goody at Horton Plaza is really big, by the way!) to discover that yes, they had vinyl!  Not only did they have brand new vinyl (no copy of Girl Panic though), but they also had used vinyl.  Score!!  I delved into the rack nonchalantly, figuring I’d see what they had, but expecting to find nothing.  Just as I was about to take a deep breath and walk away, I found a promo copy of Electric Barbarella.  It was just a generic white cover with a sticker to indicate what was on it, but upon closer examination I saw that they were remixes I’d not heard of previously.  I really figured that I would recognize the music when I got home because I have tons of remixes on my iPod that I don’t know the full-name. (I’m really bad that way and I’m not even going to apologize – there’s just too much to keep track of and I’m far better with recognizing the music than I am anything else)  Anyway, I scooped up my finds, purchased them, chatted it up with the salesgirl about her passion for Depeche Mode and my passion for Duran Duran, collected the family and went out the door.  Less than one hour, thankyouverymuch!

Last night when we got home, Walt put on the record – I was excited to hear it since I didn’t automatically know what the remixes would sound like.  All in all, they were really cool – some were better than others and I’m pretty sure I’ve heard at least one of the versions before, or some sampling thereof, but I really liked it.  Then on the B side, we came to the final mix, which was called A Capella.  I was curious since I didn’t think I’d ever heard such a thing.  Well, the entire song is Simon’s vocal tracks with nothing behind it.(hence the A Capella name…)  If you ever had any doubt about Simon’s voice, this track puts it all on the line.  Not only do you hear Simon singing each verse without any production effect aside from a bit of an echo, you hear him sing each layer of harmonization in the chorus.  It’s gorgeous.  The mix is very short since it contains just the stanzas of verse and two choruses, but if I ever get asked why I love Simon’s voice, all I have to do is play this mix.  It almost brought me to tears, and had my husband not been there – I probably would have indulged.  My only words after it was over were “That is exactly why I love this band so much.”  Sure, it was only Simon that was singing, I know that.  Sure, on that particular mix there wasn’t an instrument to be heard, but that isn’t the point and any Duranie would know that.

Oh, and the best part of the mix?  At the very end…after the final vocal note fades away to nothing…you hear Simon cough just one time.  It’s such a silly thing, and I can’t even describe it – but there’s a certain comfort in KNOWING it’s Simon.  It’s odd to have such a strange recognition, but it’s just that if you’re a fan – you know what Simon sounds like.  I don’t know, maybe I’m weird, maybe I’m just a Duranie, but it was just one of those moments.  There were several in the mix where I’d hear him take a quick breath to keep up with the words. (and I can’t tell you how impressed I am that he doesn’t trip over the lyrics “Ultra chrome latex and steel”!)  He sings them so fast in the song in order to make them work with the music – I just don’t think I’d noticed before now.  Anyway, it’s those tiny moments that make it special.  Oddly.

The very best part?  I don’t even LIKE Electric Barbarella.  Up until the Red Carpet Massacre album, I thought I hated that song and the entire album it came on….turns out, I don’t hate Medazzaland at all.  (don’t even begin to tell me it can happen with Night Runner or Skin Divers….)

-R

ps – 11 days and counting!!!!

So about that vinyl….

I am sure that most of you have already heard about the limited edition vinyl that Duran Duran is humbly offering their fans – it’s numbered, signed by the band and has a special 30 page booklet that comes with it.  Word is that the packaging is pretty special as well.  As I read the press release, I’ll admit it – I was salivating with hunger for it.  I LOVE vinyl.  I collect it.  We choose to play vinyl at home as opposed to ever using our CD player.  I suppose it’s an addiction at this point. (as I glance towards the door to our garage, which contains shelves filled with, at last count, about 3000 records, including three large trunks filled with “the good stuff”)  My husband and I adore going to garage sales, going through boxes of dusty records, finding the treasures within.  A lot of times, we come up with a handful of Barry Manilow records and not much else.  Other times, we find Elvis, or even a Beatles album that was dismissed and forgotten years prior.  Still other times, I get lucky and find a Depeche Mode album or even a Duran Duran album – and the world is right again.  So, vinyl is our thing, and yes, I felt my pulse ignite as I read the news about the limited edition.  As I read each included detail, the proverbial cash register I have in my brain clicked upwards.  I knew the final count would be pricey, but I eagerly clicked on the link contained in the press release on duranduran.com to go to the website where I could order the album.  It was all fine and good until I got to the price – 250 GBP.  *gasp*  I had to re-read the GBP, because at first I was thinking, “Well, $250 is pretty pricey, but you know – I might be able to swing this past the family Controller.”  Ha.  That’s GBP there, Rhonda.  Try multiplying 250 by 1.6, and then you’ll have the USD amount.  *double gasp*


I couldn’t justify the purchase.  While having the limited edition sounds divine, paying upwards of $400 for an album does not, even if it’s signed.  I already have a few signed items by the band, and I can’t comment for anyone else – but for me – the signatures don’t mean nearly as much unless I was there in person to witness them being signed.  I don’t know if that makes any sense to anyone else, but it’s just not the same.  For example, my prized Duran Duran item is a signed copy of Astronaut – signed by all 5 original band members.  I was there to have it signed.  I remember having to talk myself through a short conversation with both Andy and Roger Taylor as it was getting signed, and I remember Roger smiling at me as he handed it to me.  Oh yes.  Yes I do.  That album is worth about a million dollars to me as a result.  A limited edition of All You Need is Now would be a worthy addition to my collection, no doubt at all – it’s probably my second favorite DD album of all time – but at $400, I just can’t justify it to myself.  

That said, I don’t blame the band one bit for offering it.  Everyone who has taken joy in mentioning how lousy this album is selling so far, saying that the band “ought to pack it in”, or predicting that RCM will actually end up having sold more…here’s the chance for the band to actually sell some records , and interestingly enough – it IS selling.  As of yesterday, the limited edition had actually been 2/3 of the way sold out (only 500 copies are available), and at $400 a pop, I’d say that’s pretty good.   There are definitely some Duranies amongst us that are willing to pay the price to own it, and I can’t fault them for doing so. Granted, 500 albums does not make a best selling album, and I know that – but it certainly justifies pressing the albums as far as the band is concerned, and I can imagine that if they actually DO press a regular version of the vinyl, it will also sell out because there are many of us who really want it, especially now after having seen this limited edition dangled in front of us.

Personally, yeah the price sucks.  Business-wise, I can’t blame them a bit.  More power to ’em if they sell, because if they didn’t – it’d be harder for them to finance the next album, and I can’t have that.  I’m not ready to see them quit yet, because I’m not finished with them!  I’ve got more touring to do, more songs to sing with the band, and more good times ahead.  I hope they’re ready…..

-R

Anybody Know?

Most days, I wake up and immediately start thinking about what I can blog about.  My goal with the blog is to come up with a topic and finish the blog in about a half hour.   Most days, that doesn’t happen.  I could probably spend several hours pouring over the boards every day, coming up with just the perfect topic – but the reality is that I don’t have that kind of time.  Or at least, I shouldn’t be spending that kind of time.

Today, and honestly for the past week, I’ve been sick.  My youngest and I continue to pass what I think amounts to a cold back and forth.  It’s no fun if you can’t share, right?  Anyway, I feel fairly removed from what is going on in the world of Duran, mainly because I write this blog each day – then I put the computer away and go lay down on the couch!  If shows have been announced, I wouldn’t know.   If Nick started a Facebook page in the last few days, I’m completely in the dark. So today I find myself twiddling my thumbs and racking my brain trying to come up with a topic that I haven’t already whined about previously.   I’m coming up completely blank.  That might have something to do with the cough medicine I’m taking, or the fact that I know I should be getting groceries at the store right this second….

So, instead of a real blog, I have a couple questions for anyone who can answer.

My husband, in a quest to try and find an album or Duran Duran treasure that I’ve never heard of before – found a Boys Keep Swinging vinyl online and bought it for me.  I think it was an auction win, actually.  The cool thing is that it’s yellow vinyl and I believe that it’s pretty rare – I think only 500 were made.  Anybody else have one out there?  This really isn’t a question as much as just a comment that although I knew about the vinyl, I can only find clear ones for sale online – not so much of the yellow.  Anyone know?

The other question I’ve got is also vinyl related.  There is apparently an album out there that is somehow related to Duran Goes Dutch.  According to something my husband read (keeping in mind that his only goal here is to come to me with knowledge of something Duran related that I’d never heard of before – therefore one-upping me and feeling superior.  Picture my eyes rolling ), there’s an album that is of the full show that Duran Goes Dutch was recorded from.  According to the seller it’s the “Holy Grail” of Duran Duran – and I wish I knew the name of the album, but the person who was selling it wanted about $1000 for it. (actually, it could have been more, my memory is failing me here)  Anyone know anything about this? It’s something I hadn’t heard of, and I’m sure as heck not admitting that to the husband if in fact this is something valid!  😀  I’ve tried googling it but I’m coming up empty.

Well, my brain has completely ran out of power today, so I’m calling it a day and going back to laundry.

Til tomorrow, be good to one another! -R