Tag Archives: Duran Duran covers

If We’re All of the Same Stuff

I apologize for not having a blog post yesterday. I would like to say that this won’t happen again, but I cannot. Before I even say what I’m about to say, I can already hearing some comments. You all thought my campaign work was done in November, right? Well…not so much. I had a three week break before I took on a new role, which is a campaign manager for a local race, which will be decided in the first week in April. This combined with the end of the semester at work means that things are pretty intense with me right now. I’m so tired that I feel like crying, which doesn’t mean that I’m not enjoying the new work but wish that I had more hours in my day. Anyway, my apologizes for yesterday’s lack of a blog and any in the future.

Despite my busy schedule this past week, I did one task just for fun, which was to contact a fandom group of friends. No, this group is not connected to Duran Duran or Duran fandom. These women are people I met when I was really into the TV show, Roswell, back in the early 2000s. Back then, we reached out to each other after discovering that we all lived in the Midwest on a message board. The first get together led to lots more even though the show hasn’t seen a new episode in 17 years until now…sort of.

This week, a reboot of the original series, premiered. I felt compelled to reach out to my little group of friends to see what they thought, if they were planning to watch, etc. As we shared our thoughts, one thing became extremely obvious. All of us are assuming the worst about the series with comments like, “They will never be the real characters.” As I read more and more messages like this, I found myself snorting and thinking about whether or not there is, has been or could be something similar to this in the Duran fandom.

First, I considered cover songs. Is this similar to when a band covers a Duran Duran song? I don’t really think so. A whole show is a much bigger deal. Could it be a whole album of covers? That definitely seems like a closer comparison. After all, it might be that some songs of an entire cover album might get Duran Duran’s music more than others as some elements of a reboot might get it right. If we assume that these are comparable situations, I’m not surprised that my Roswell friends responded in the way they did. After all, this was a show that they loved. It is hard to imagine that any reboot could create the same sort of love and devotion even with elements that are very similar. Likewise, I have seen a lot of Duran fans reject any covers of Duran’s music. They love the originals so much that any aspect that is different makes it feels dramatically different and bad to many of the hardcore fans.

Then, of course, comes the question of how similar should the cover be. Should covers try to match the original as much as possible or would it be better if it creates a completely new version or interpretation while keeping key elements like lyrics? I can see both. On one hand, if the cover is alike in style to the original, it could feel comforting. It could also feature the best elements of the original. On the other hand, if the cover sounds really different, that might be less problematic to hardcore fans. A new interpretation could be judged not based on the original but completely on its own.

True confession time. I have not watched the first episode yet. The reason is simple as I want to be able to take it all in when I am not super duper tired or stressed. I’m wondering if this cover of sorts could actually make me appreciate the original show more, not because it sucks but because it shines a light on what make the show so awesome to me. Could it renew my interest in the show or the fandom? Maybe. It certainly got my Roswell group of friends to be chatty all week, which I have thoroughly enjoyed. To me, that makes the reboot worth it. Besides, as I told them, if it really sucks, then we should watch and make a drinking game out o it.

So, what do the rest of you think of covers? Reboots? Are they good and valuable or annoying and dumb?

-A

The Next Thing You Must Have–Duran Shopping

‘Tis the season.  I woke up this morning to lots of beautiful, peaceful, white snow on the ground.  It reminded me that the holiday season is just around the corner.  This means vacation, family time, good food, and more.  This year, the holiday season (no matter your holiday of choice) feels like a good time to appreciate what you have and embrace your loved ones.  For me, this embrace will still include gift giving.  Why?  I like to give gifts and like to make my family and friends happy.  Perhaps, you feel the same or, maybe, your family and friends are trying to figure out some items that they might buy you, the Duranie in their lives!  Here are some suggestions!!

Duran Duran Official Store

During this time of year, I always recommend checking out what is available in the official Duran Duran store.  Usually, there are some new goodies as well as some classics to buy.  Here are the items that have caught my attention!

Holiday Bauble Set

holidaybaubles2015.jpg-large

These are due out on Monday!!  I love that they are hand decorated glass and come in a wooden display box.  Super cute!!!

Paper Gods Products

Band t-shirt
Band Paper Gods T-shirt

Rhinestone T-shirt
Paper Gods Rhinestone T-shirt

Both of these t-shirts were available on tour and super cute in person.  The rhinestone one, in particular, is very cute!  The things I really like about the current t-shirts is that they fit really well and are super soft!!!!

Of course, there are more Paper Gods products in the store!  I know that the coffee mugs caught my attention, including the one below:

Mug

Classics in the Store:

Airline bag
Airline bag

Planet Earth shirt

I also love, love, love that there are items with various logos representing various Duran Duran eras.

Beach Towel
Beach Towel

Shopping Elsewhere

Even if these products don’t suit your fancy, there is plenty more Duran Duran related items to buy this year.  One item that I might recommend is:

Paper Gods Vinyl

Vinyl

I know it is available at Amazon and I just read that it is available at Barnes and Noble in the US as well!  To me, vinyl really makes me appreciate the music more and this one is no exception!  Speaking of this musical format, Amazon also has Notorious and Big Thing available on vinyl, too!!

Unstaged on DVD

Unstaged front

My copy of this just arrived!  Be on the look out for a review of it soon!!!

Cover Albums

Perhaps, your interest in Duran Duran covers has been renewed or ignited after hearing and buying your copy of Eagles of Death Metal’s version of Save a Prayer.  If so, here are some cover albums that you might want to check out!

Making Patterns Rhyme cover
Making Patterns Rhyme

The Duran Duran Tribute Album
The Duran Duran Tribute Album

 Electroclash Undone: An Electro Tribute To Duran Duran

Electrotrash Undone: An Electro Tribute To Duran Duran

Books

Perhaps, you are interested in adding some books to your library that have a Duran connection.  For recommendations, please check out some of the ones we like right on our homepage.  🙂

What else am I missing?  Ah…yes.  Maybe, some might opt to give money for touring.  After all, concerts aren’t free!  Perhaps, you all need a reminder of how good Duran Duran is.  If so, I recommend watching this brand new clip of their performance on the Graham Norton show:

On that note, happy shopping for the Duranie(s) in you/your life!

-A

This Week in Duranland – July 14 – July 20

After last’s week excitement with Duran Duran performing at the White Nights Festival in St. Petersburg, Russia, this week was bound to be calmer.  While I loved, loved, loved the excitement, I knew that it might not stay that way.  Nonetheless, there were some interesting happenings this week in the Duran Duran universe.  As always, I looked into the official sites and the social media sites for my news.

First, there was a new Collector’s Corner published, which focused on the first album and the various releases of that first album, including re-releases, international releases, etc.  I found it fascinating and highly recommend reading it here.

Second, there was a new jukebox up on duranduran.com, which includes some gems like Tel Aviv and My Antarctica.  Check it out here.

Beyond official website updates, here are some other recent happenings.

Singer/songwriter, Tori Amos, covered Rio live in concert this week, which you can see/hear here.

Ask Katy has a new website!  Go check it out and sign up for her newsletter here.

Another online place to check out is Anna Ross’s Facebook page, which you can get to here.   You might just see a Duran clip or two!

Yet, I will finish this week’s summary with what I think is the best NEWS of the week!  John Taylor sent out a little tweet yesterday, which got many a Duranie all excited!  What was the big news?  He was in the studio in London with…Mr. Mark Ronson!  Now, it is no secret that the authors of this blog loved, loved, loved Duran’s last album and thought that the quality of the music proved that Mark Ronson was the right producer for Duran.  Therefore, when reading this tweet, I can’t help but to feel like all is right in Duranland.

I can’t wait to see what next week will be!!!

-A

The Week in Duranland: July 7 to July 13

Well, this week was very, very boring.  I’m kidding!  This week saw some real action!!!!  Obviously, the big news was that Duran Duran performed at the White Nights Festival in St. Petersburg, Russia on Saturday, July 12.  They played three songs:  All You Need Is Now, Sunrise and Notorious.  Here is a YouTube clip of 2 out of 3 of them!

For other information, you can go to the press release on dd.com here or to read our blog posts about it, go here and here.

What else happened this week?  Other things happened this week in Duranland?  I don’t think so.  Oh, I kid.  I kid.

It seems that Nick Rhodes has a new project.  He is going to front a new genetically formulated range of skincare called Geneu.  It should be introduced this summer.  What will Nick be doing with it?  He will be doing a lot of what he does best:  visuals, graphic designs, photography, etc.  Somehow, this project does not surprise me in the least!

Did I mention that the official website has a new look?  It features some new studio pictures and the cool new font that I just adore!  Go here to see it.

Ordinary World was covered this week by The Pierces.  Go watch and listen here.  Then, tell us what you think!

Another cover was featured in USA Today.  Carina Round covered Come Undone and you can read the article here.  If you want Rhonda’s take on it, go here.

The Washington Post posted a map that features every song about New York.  What Duran song was mentioned?  My Own Way, of course!  See the map here.

The latest edition of the Duranasty Webzine was published!  This edition featured lots of information about the album, including release dates (hoping for spring), first single (hoping for this fall), producers, and more.  Beyond the news, each band member was featured including other projects and some fabulous photos.  It is well worth taking the time to read!  Go here for the goodies!

So, what did I miss???  What else happened?  Maybe, let’s hope, that next week is as exciting or even more exciting!

-A

Covers, Covers, we got your covers!!

Second “real” blog post in two days.  You’d think I was gearing back up for an album or something…

I think most Duranies are aware of the Making Patterns Rhyme tribute album that Manimal records is producing, and if you’re not familiar with the yet-to-be-released full album, surely you’ve heard Moby’s Rio and Belief’s Sound of Thunder.   If not – go check them out, the links are there for your convenience!

Yesterday, John Taylor asked DDHQ to ask about your favorite Duran Duran cover song.  I almost tweeted back that I was going to sit down with some popcorn and drinks, and let the games begin.  I knew that I’d be reading a litany of “You can’t do Duran Duran better than Duran Duran”, but I was curious to see what other answers might come up.

Personally, I haven’t paid a ton of attention to covers over the years. I knew they were out there – but I didn’t really care. I didn’t hate them, but I didn’t really feel the need to hear them, either. I was so busy just enjoying Duran Duran that I didn’t think I needed to pay attention. I knew Reel Big Fish had done Hungry Like the Wolf, and I remember Hole’s version on The Chauffeur…and I can’t really forget the medley of DD songs that Rockapella performed  (I have it on my iPad somewhere…), but I didn’t take the time to really search or listen beyond that.  Somehow, I suspect I’m not alone.

So, when John Taylor asked about our favorite covers yesterday, I really thought about the question, and more importantly, why he might be asking. There were definitely an overwhelming number of  those “it’s nothing if it’s not Duran Duran” type-replies, and I suspect that John knew he’d see that. So, why ask?  I’m sure he was curious what we have heard. After all, not every single Duran Duran cover has been promoted by the band. (and from the research I’ve done in the past couple of days, I can understand why…) I think asking that sort of question gives him a reasonable gauge of what we’ve exposed ourselves to hearing.  I also think he wanted to somehow indicate that while he appreciates loyalty to the band and all – he fully expects that we might occasionally hear, and enjoy a cover of their music…and that it’s OK.  Additionally, just talking about covers gets fans thinking about covers, and maybe, just maybe…it gets us listening and exposing our ears to what is out there.

My own response, and theory to what is going on here with the complete dismay, dislike, and venom (I could go on…) for the covers of Rio and Sound of Thunder (not as much so for the LUXXURY version of Girls on Film…) is that quite simply: I don’t think fans are used to hearing them much.  We haven’t taken the time to expose ourselves. It takes time to accept that it’s OK that it’s not Simon singing the vocals, John on bass, Nick…Roger…etc, and the only way you grow to accept it is to force yourself to keep listening.  Eventually you realize that no, the world does NOT come to an end because someone covered a Duran Duran song. Even better, you start recognizing that yes, there are people out there who have a tremendous gift and can continue to be creative with what is already an amazing song. Then the pendulum starts to swing to the point where you want to see just how far someone can go with the original song.  How far can it be taken before it’s not really Rio, or Hungry Like the Wolf or The Chauffeur?  Where are the boundaries?? Sure, this might not be the case for everyone, but I really kind of think it’s the case for many.  I know because I was there, and I’m betting I’m not alone. This was definitely me several years back.  I though I was being the good little fan by saying nothing was as good as the original.  I missed out on some really great music in the process.

I made the comment yesterday that part of the problem is that I don’t think fans have been exposed to many covers and that someone…maybe even a fan blog (because I’m a smart ass that way) should start posting some and getting people to listen.  I’ll say this much: after you hear some really bad covers, you start listening to the covers that might be way out there but still very creative much, much differently.  I can almost promise that.

So each week I’m going to take Wednesdays (since this is what day this is) and post some covers and a short little review of them.  It’s going to be YOUR job, as good readers, to listen and post whatever you think.  You are probably going to hate most of them at first. I get that. I’ll keep reminding you that they’re not as terrible (most of the time) as you think, and that no – Simon will not hate you for listening to them.  That I can pretty much promise.  Eventually you might just find something you like, and by that time, hopefully this damn #DD14 album will be READY TO PLAY!!!  (that was for you, John Taylor and Co….)  What I’m going to try to do is pick a song and then find a few covers of that song to post.  I might not ever find them all – in which case if you know of one to share, please do. Send a link, email us…and we’ll post it!

The question is where to begin. So this week let’s try Ordinary World. There are a TON of covers of this song, so I picked my favorites. If you have others that you want me to hear, send ’em!! Link is in the title:artist name. Short review is below each.

Ordinary World: Aurora

So this cover is different. The melody is definitely secondary to the rhythm track – in an attempt to make it danceable, and it has a much more atmospheric, spacey sound in parts. It’s also sped way, way up from the original.  That said, it’s completely recognizable…and the lead singer is apparently Robert Pattinson’s (of Twilight fame) older sister.  She has a beautiful voice.  Funny how I never thought much about females taking on Duran’s tunes before…but as you’re going to see over the next several weeks, MANY of the most beautiful covers out there are done by females!

Ordinary World: Gregorian

Very interesting, this Gregorian. (really…I’ve studied real Gregorian chant, and it’s not quite to that point) The music is somewhat subdued, and of course the voices are meant to stand out on their own.  For me, this doesn’t really quite do it…but you know, it IS beautiful in it’s own right. I just keep thinking it feels a bit too much like karaoke.

Ordinary World: Joy Williams

This is my favorite cover of this song (that I’ve found so far).  Haunting, emotional…it’s as though all of the sorrow that could be found in this song is packed into her vocals. No guitar, just piano…and it’s stunning in every single way.

Ordinary World: Red

Love the strings on this one and the additional synth sounds make it interesting and their own. The song is executed in much of the same style as Duran Duran, but it’s definitely their own spin on it musically with a little more of a rock anthem type of sound to it.

Ordinary World: Ainjel Emme

Another female artist.  This time, it’s just guitar and vocals.  Her vocals are stunning, and the guitar is acoustic – very pretty.  My only constructive criticism is that she does very little to make the song her own, and I’d like to hear what she could do to take the song to a different place.

Ordinary World: Rust

Wow. This is a much harder rock version. They kept the melody, the guitar solo…probably kept most of the synth that we know…and added a whole new element. Truthfully out of the covers I chose to include, this is probably the farthest from the original – but it’s interesting.  The hard rock gives the song a great gritty texture to it for those moments where I’m really just majorly pissed off AND sad at the same time!

That’s six different versions of Ordinary World. I know there are a ton more out there that I didn’t even include (I could be here for days…listening and writing away….), but it’s a start. Take a listen. Get your ears used to hearing other people performing Duran’s music. It won’t kill you. In fact, I think it broadens the horizons a bit.

-R