Today’s Katy Kafe brings John Taylor in to “grill” Katy on her past with the band. Out of all four band members, John always seems the most introspective to me, and his Kafe didn’t disappoint.
It seems as though John is shocked by the very idea that 1995 was twenty years ago. I know how that feels, and I’m guessing the rest of our readers do as well.
John asks Katy about her first encounter with the band and she responds saying that she was “really really nervous” and had big hair. John immediately asks if she had been a fan of Duran Duran. Katy answers in the affirmative, saying that she remembers receiving Def Leppard and Seven and the Ragged Tiger as gifts one year. John responds by saying, “But it wasn’t like you were really going to be meeting your idols that day.” I get his point here. It’s one thing to like a band, it is entirely another to consider them your idols. I appreciate that John seems to recognize the difference, and it is a question that I would have loved to ask Katy myself! Katy says that she “really liked them”. I had a lot of friends like that in high school. There’s liking them and being excited to see them at a show or something; and then there’s committing to writing a daily blog about them (for zero pay) thirty years later. I think that might be the difference there, am I right?
There was a little discussion over the history of cell phones. I have to tell John that yes, cell phones really were around in 1995. I had my first cell phone in November of 1994, actually. It was a large brick from LA Cellular that I had to carry around with me for work while I did door-to-door cold calling for a temporary service. (doesn’t that sound joyous?) I remember it was super expensive to really use, and while my boss, Mr. Grinch (not his name but appropriate) insisted that I carry the phone – he also told me that if I ever used it, emergency or not, that I would be paying for it. Nice guy, that Mr. Grinch.
John asks her why she’s still around. A fair question, really, because he surmises that surely that most everyone else has since moved on. She talks a lot about it being a friendship, and how even back during the time of the reunion, she was really the only holdover – they didn’t even have a manager then, they were still speaking to managers. She says she is a big fan of them as people, and that she’s worked for several labels – and she couldn’t continue working for them if she didn’t like them as people.
John talks about how relationships for him are about trust, and that’s not always easy. Then he speaks of how the four guys go in and out of friendships, and that she is able to kind of go along and make sense of it all and maintain relationships with each and every member of the band. (I’m completely paraphrasing because I’m listening to the Kafe as I type – if you want to hear his answers word for word, go get your DDM membership!) This is where it gets interesting. Katy thanks him, and then says that she’s worked with “such jerks” over the years (I have absolutely no doubt about this whatsoever), and that yes, they do have artistic temperaments and she gets that…but that none of them…”none of the current band members, let me say, have ever been disrespectful to me…” I can’t help but notice the “current band members” comment, and of course my imagination is off and running, but I’m not going to even guess what or whom she might mean.
She talks about how if she’s gotten chastised in the past, it was deserved, and that the band has allowed her to fix her mistakes if she’s messed up. John responds saying that he thinks when you’ve made an error at work it’s best to just come clean, which turns this Katy Kafe into a good working lesson for all…let’s face it, when you’ve worked with the same people for twenty or thirty years, it’s not because you’re difficult to work with. So I tuck that little nugget of wisdom into my head for later.
John asks Katy about some highlights, to which Katy says that there have been a lot. She gushes about the new album, saying that she is really excited about the new album because “it’s going to reach an audience that hasn’t been reached before”. Then she talks about flying on what we like to call Duran Duran 1, Live Earth, and the Video Vanguard Award from MTV.
She finishes the Kafe with a memory of John. They had a party for Thank You in the Flatiron District in NYC, and John turned around and gently told Katy that she should leave her green Keroppi backpack in the car. After hearing about this backpack, I had to look it up. My Sanrio memory goes as far as Hello Kitty and the Twin Stars…I had kind of forgotten about the frog. Perhaps her backpack looked a little something like this:
So John ever so kindly told her to leave it in the car, saving both himself and Katy from a little hard judgment from the masses, I guess. Nick apparently continued to tell her to “get rid of that backpack”…and so the beloved Keroppi backpack vanished not long after. I don’t know Katy’s age, I’m guessing she’s younger than I am, and I’m 44, so in April of 1995 I would have been 24 (and just married). I did some remarkably “green” things as well back then. Didn’t we all? It’s nice of Katy to share them with us though – I’d never tell about the time my then boss (who was ridiculously mean) made me cry in our office because I had the nerve to joke around with one of my employees about getting to work the next day. He berated me in front of clients and said I was completely unprofessional. (I was a staffing manager/sales associate for a temporary service at the time…and I probably WAS unprofessional. Who knew?!?) 😉 It happens, and John was probably a lot nicer than Mr. Grinch, my boss!
It’s gotta be said though – I like the backpack. 🙂