Duran Singles: US vs. UK

About a month ago, I wrote a blog here where I compared and analyzed the fans’ ranking of Duran Duran singles to their actual chart position (in the US).  While people were interested in the results, they were also interested in how the fans’ ranking compared to the UK charts.  After all, Duran Duran is from the UK and we know that their chart success there was different.  While I absolutely plan on comparing the fans’ result to the UK charts, I also want to take the time to really compare the UK charts to the US charts.

Single                               Chart Peak in US                        Chart Peak in UK

All She Wants Is                22                                                    9

All You Need Is Now       Did not chart                            Unknown

A View to a Kill                  1                                                        2

Burning the Ground      Did not chart                               31

Careless Memories        Did not chart                               37

Come Undone                   7                                                         13

Do You Believe in Shame   72                                               30

Electric Barbarella          52                                                      23

Falling Down                     Did not chart                               52

Girls on Film                       Did not chart                               5

Girl Panic                             Did not chart                               Unknown

Hungry Like the Wolf    3                                                         5

I Don’t Want Your Love   4                                                      14

Is There Something…       4                                                       1

Meet el Presidente           70                                                     24

My Own Way                       Did not chart                             14

New Moon on Monday    10                                                   9

Notorious                                 2                                                      7

Ordinary World                   3                                                       6

Out of my Mind                  Did not chart                             21

Perfect Day                           Did not chart                             28

Planet Earth                          Did not chart                             12

The Reflex                              1                                                       1

Rio                                              14                                                     9

Save a Prayer                        16                                                    2

Serious                                     Did not chart                            48

Skin Trade                                39                                                  22

Someone Else Not Me    Did not chart                            54

Sunrise                                       89                                                  5

Too Much Information      45                                                 35

Union of the Snake             3                                                     3

Violence of Summer         64                                                    20

What Happens Tomorrow  Did not chart                      11

White Lines                           Did not chart                             17

Wild Boys                               2                                                      2

While I knew that Duran had a lot more success in the UK for the singles accompanying their first album, I didn’t realize how successful those reunion singles were in the UK.  Here in the US, Duran Duran couldn’t get played on a radio station no matter what in 2004.  I distinctly remember how much The Killers were getting played during the Astronaut era but Duran couldn’t get played.  I didn’t get it.  I still don’t.  Musically, there isn’t much difference between the two bands.  Why play one and not the other?  Is it the age thing?  What does this say about America versus the UK?

Across the board, the UK has been MUCH, MUCH kinder to Duran Duran.  For example, there are a number of songs that charted in the UK that didn’t here.  Likewise, the ones that charted in both places tended to do better there than here.  In fact, the only songs that Duran did better in the US were:  Ordinary World (3 vs. 6–still very close results), Notorious (2 vs. 7–still close), I Don’t Want Your Love (4 vs. 14—Hmmm…), Hungry Like the Wolf (3 vs. 5–super close), Come Undone (7 vs. 13–close), and A View to a Kill (1 vs. 2).  Thus, the only times that Duran did better in the US was when they had a super successful hit on BOTH sides of the Atlantic.  There has never been a song that has been successful in the US that hasn’t been successful in the UK.  The only song that really surprised me, in terms of its success was I Don’t Want Your Love.  I’m surprised that it did that well since it followed Meet el Presidente, which went no where.  That said, I do remember it getting played quite a bit on MTV.  I wish I also had the number of times the video was played on MTV to  compare.  That would be super fascinating.

So, what  jumps out at you?  What did you learn?

-A

4 thoughts on “Duran Singles: US vs. UK”

  1. Interesting comments. However don’t forget the UK is so much smaller than the U.S. You have to take that into account when calculating. I remember the lack of AirPlay in the UK well. The last time they were on Radio 1’s A list was TWA era. As for Thankyou, why Perfect Day was the lead single just astounds me. I do know why but it’s very sad really. Who knows, if White Lines was the lead single we could have a different story…I loved the album anyway!

  2. I learnt that if you are a European artist, it’s a little hard to you to sell well in the American market.
    Beyond being awesomely talented, you must be humble, patient, modest and of course lucky to be appreciated there for some time.

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