Tag Archives: 78-03 tour

Do You Remember What Happens Tomorrow?

I remember the Astronaut era. Who doesn’t? Thinking back to 2005 (and even a bit prior), it was like a rebirth of my own fandom.  I discovered the online Duraniverse for the first time, I engaged with other fans, found a best friend, and found a real home in the community. I know that in hindsight, many think back on Astronaut as though it wasn’t a best effort by the band.  Some fans have said that the juicy, meaty stuff they like wasn’t quite there. I’m not entirely sure I want to agree, but that’s OK. For me, the album marked a new beginning.

One of my favorite songs off the album from the very beginning was a song that I first heard at the 78-03 show Duran Duran played in Costa Mesa, California on July 16, 2003 called “What Happens Tomorrow”.  It was one of two songs (“[Reach up for the] Sunrise” being the other) they played in their set that would eventually end up on Astronaut.  “Virus” was also played, but was not included on the US/UK version of the album.

One of the qualities I most enjoyed about the song was ultimately left on the cutting room floor. The middle section of the song – the “Silent Icy River” section was much slower than the rest of the song and served as a bit of a break. I liked it because it added some texture, but I can also see why the band decided to nix it.  The slower section probably would have been much tougher to “sell” for radio, and at the time, I think the band wanted support from radio. Taking the mid section out made the song pure pop, which is likely what they wanted and needed at the time. I suppose that is the risk of introducing songs to audiences so early in the recording process. If the songs end up being changed, the original audience can be put off – which may or may not have been the case with What Happens Tomorrow.

When the song was released in the UK on this date in 2005, it was done without the slow midsection, and the “Silent Icy River” portion was made into its own song and included on the single as a “B” side.

Oddly enough, in my search to find “What Happens Tomorrow” on YouTube, I ran across video of Duran Duran playing on NBC for New Year’s Eve in 2004, which I think might be the last time Duran Duran played on NYE prior to just recently. I’d forgotten, and maybe some of you have too.

Without further adieu…

-R

 

When the lights of hope are fading quickly

Yesterday was Thanksgiving at my house. Actually, that was the second time we celebrated—on Sunday, we were at my sister-in-law’s home with her side of the family. We’re celebrating early because we’re going to Paso Robles for the weekend, and I’m excited because all three of the kids are going with us.  Sunday was lovely, but my oldest, Heather, had told us she wouldn’t be there. She was on campus, working backstage as part of the crew for a show. It is part of the requirements for her major and requires a lot of time, including striking the stage, which was happening that night. We’d agreed as a family to then have our Thanksgiving yesterday when Heather could be at home.

We had just finished our meal on Sunday and were talking with family when the doorbell to my sister-in-law’s home rang, and someone shouted out “It’s Heather!” I was in the living room and heard the commotion at the door, and thought to myself, “Who’s Heather?!” Then I saw the long brown hair and knew.  She’d gotten off much earlier than expected and came as a surprise. It’s ridiculous really, because Heather lives just a half hour from me and I have seen her, although since the beginning of October she hasn’t been able to come home and stay, but I was still overjoyed.

I’m finding that more and more often, I cannot get all three of my kids, my husband and myself into the same room for any length of time. There are too many independent parts, so invariably it ends up being my husband and I with one or two of the kids. One is always not available, and this is likely not to improve any time soon with our next one getting ready to graduate from high school. I treasure the very few moments I get, and there is something incredibly special when all three of my kids are together here.  I used to find fault with my mom when she’d complain how she never saw my sister or myself—I get it now.  Something that was at one point commonplace or expected (and sometimes even dreaded – imagine that at one point, we’d divide up the kids between Walt and I so that it wasn’t quite so crazy!) is now something I yearn for.  (we will see if I still feel that way Sunday night!)

Lately, I feel that way about Duran Duran, too. I wrote the blog, went to a lot of shows, and while they were all fun, I’m not sure I actually appreciated them. I mean, of course I loved seeing the band play, or hearing new music or seeing a new video.  The only way I can explain myself, is to say that at some point, I stopped really listening for enjoyment. Weird words to use, maybe, but they’re truthful.  I can remember back to when I saw Duran Duran in Costa Mesa in 2003, or several weeks later when I saw them at 4th and B in downtown San Diego. I was so excited at the mere thought of being in the same breathing space that I couldn’t sleep the night before.  I listened to their albums here at home, in the car, whenever I could.  I think my mind would be on them (leading up to a show) so much that I’d dream about running into them somewhere crazy, like at a gas station!

Somewhere along the line though, that stopped. It is similar to when I bought annual passes to Disneyland when my kids were little (and the passes weren’t so darn expensive!).  It was great at first, but it got to a point when Walt and I would tell Gavin and Heather that we were going to the park for the day and they’d complain.  (Yes, complain. I mean, who wants to go to Disneyland when you can stay at home and play video games, right??) That was the last year we bought passes, I might add.

Don’t get me wrong, I never complained about seeing the band. That would be monumentally stupid since I was the one buying the tickets! Nobody forced me to go, and I always had a blast. I just think the idea of going to show after show lost a little of that magic, and I did it to myself, really.  I started comparing venue to venue or being more annoyed by the silly, trivial things about going to shows. I stopped listening to Duran Duran in the car.  I certainly never listened to them here at home. I didn’t watch their videos very much, or if I did – it was solely for blogging or researching.

In a sentence: it stopped being fun.

I felt it happen. I think a lot of you probably saw it happen through my writing. Instead of being fun, it felt like a job. That isn’t how this is supposed to work. I didn’t know how to turn it all around, until I had no other choice.

You see, as so many have rightfully pointed out to me, touring is expensive. I’ve recently had to get real and cut back on my expenses. I stopped writing and rewriting a manuscript Amanda and I had been working on because the last one that seemed like it had a good shot was rejected. After putting so much hard work into it, I had to stop. My brain was tired and I was emotionally SPENT. I wasn’t even sure I could keep writing this blog. Then I got a job, and little by little – I was forced to put the blog and even my love for Duran Duran on the back-burner.  I’ve been feeling this way since August for sure, but if I really think about it, I think I’ve probably had these sorts of feelings since before Paper Gods was released.

 

Yesterday, I blogged about Notorious.  As I was writing, I realized that  I probably hadn’t listened to that album in years. Not the whole thing, and definitely not just for pleasure. I put it on. I finished blogging, and then set the table for Thanksgiving. I found myself singing along, not really deeply listening for every single guitar chord or synthesizer track – but just enjoying the music. I really enjoyed it.  Two nights ago, I woke up after having a dream.  I’d run into Simon somewhere and he took down my name because one of my shows had been canceled and he was going to help me out. (clearly a dream, right?) I haven’t had a dream about Duran Duran…or really ANY dream….in many months. Most importantly, I’m thinking about blogging again. Thinking about what I want to write.

No, I’m not planning to see the band live any time soon, unless they come to the west coast again…but I feel like I’m enjoying being a fan again, and I’ll take that over a show any day. I suspect the next time I do see them, I’ll be far more appreciative. That isn’t about being Daily Duranie, or blogging, or trying to write a manuscript. It’s about just being me. A fan.

-R

 

35 years and counting…Happy Birthday Planet Earth!

To my complete surprise, we are celebrating another milestone birthday, and a fairly significant one at that today. On this date 35 years ago, the single for Planet Earth/Late Bar was released.

First of all, the math MUST be off because I’m only 25, right??? I just don’t get it….

Secondly, this just does not seem possible. In a lot of ways I’m almost humbled by the thought, because I really think Duran Duran is about the only “thing” in my life (with the exception of my own children) that I can say I’ve stuck with since nearly day one. I can’t quite say day one, because I didn’t grow up in the UK and didn’t hear about Duran Duran until 1981…but it’s pretty close. It’s been a crazy road, and I’m sure many of you out there are nodding your heads in agreement. This band has been around through the thick, the thin….from pubescence to, well…let’s just call it middle age.

The history is just there. Aside from my family, there isn’t any one thing that has been in my life longer than Duran Duran. Whether that paints me as loyal or significantly impaired probably depends on the day, but it is what it is. I often joke that I’ve loved Duran Duran longer than I have my husband (not a joke I tend to make while discussing plans for a lengthy summer DD road trip with him…), but it is true in some sense, and it all began with Planet Earth. As it should.

On Twitter, someone asked about the first date I saw Duran Duran live. My first concert was in 1989, I didn’t see them in 84 or 85 when they toured here. So my first experience seeing them was after Roger and Andy left the band. I saw them in March of 1989 at Universal Amphitheater (which has since been demolished), during their Big Thing tour. I was in nearly the back row of the theater, my favorite band member had left, and yes, it was a let-down in some sense because standing there that night (which does not feel all that long ago), it felt a little like a consolation prize for not seeing them in 84. Oddly, I clearly remember them playing Planet Earth that night, and for me, it just felt hollow. The bones were there, I suppose, but the feeling or spirit wasn’t right. I didn’t get to see the REAL band (in my head at the time, that’s how I saw it), so I was seeing what was left. I had no idea of course that they’d continue on from there and that I’d see them many more times over the course of their career. I just knew what was in that moment, and it didn’t feel quite right. I don’t know if I’d call that night a disappointment, but I think I knew I missed out. Time machine forward to the 78-03 tour, where I saw the band at the Pacific Amphitheater. This was when I saw the original five members for the very first time. They played Planet Earth again that night, and as my husband will gladly tell anyone who asks, I stood there completely dumbfounded for at least the first three songs and likely longer. I couldn’t talk, couldn’t move, couldn’t quite believe what my eyes and ears were experiencing – and I was nowhere near the front. I can’t imagine what I would have done had I been anywhere closer. For me, that night brought me full circle. There was something very, very, special for me about seeing the band I first fell in love with playing Planet Earth. I own the CD from that night, and I still get goosebumps when I play it. The memories flood my head, and I know that I won’t ever forget.  I still feel that way each time they play it. Yes, the line-up has changed, but this time, the spirit remains intact.

Of course, I still haven’t had the good luck to see them play Late Bar – the B side – to Planet Earth yet. I keep hoping they’ll throw it in one of their sets I’m seeing at some point so that I can die happy. It’s funny because Amanda’s favorite DD song is Planet Earth, and one of my very favorite is Late Bar (along with ITSISK and Secret Oktober).  Different sides of the same single. Pretty accurate, I’d say.

Planet Earth was the beginning of this crazy journey. The band says they don’t like to look back, which is fine. In a lot of ways I sort of think it really our job to look back from time to time, and I embrace that task. After all, I wouldn’t be writing this today if it hadn’t been for Planet Earth. I love having milestones such as these to mark not only the band’s career, but also my life. Each song represents a memory, and every once in a while, it’s good to be transported back for a short visit.

The best part, of course, is that the journey isn’t over. March is coming. Shows are still being announced, tours will begin, and new memories will be made. I am humbled by the very thought that in a small way, Daily Duranie helps to keep these experiences and memories fresh in people’s minds, we try to create new opportunities for fans to gather, and the fun just keeps on coming!

Happy 35th Birthday Planet Earth!

-R

 

 

Today in Duran History – Nagoya, Japan

On today’s date in 2003, Duran Duran played at Century Hall in Nagoya, Japan.  Fans will remember that these shows in Japan were the first shows of the band’s reunion, and this show at Century Hall was #3. Many fans and Duranies traveled from all over the world, including the US, to go to see these first shows with the Fab Five back together again.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any clips from this particular show (plenty from Budokan, though, which leads me to believe that: A. they were able to get cameras into the Budokan but not others. or B. They had finally recovered their senses enough from seeing the other shows that they could take video of this one!!)…but I do have the set list!

Friends of Mine
Hungry Like the Wolf
Planet Earth
Come Undone
What Happens Tomorrow
New Religion
Virus
White Lines (Don’t Don’t Do It)
(Grandmaster Flash & Melle Mel cover)
Night Boat
Still Breathing
Is There Something I Should Know?
Save a Prayer
Ordinary World
A View to a Kill
(Reach Up for the) Sunrise
Notorious
The Wild Boys
Careless Memories
The Reflex

Encore:
Girls on Film
Rio