Yesterday’s winner: Picture G
I have a feeling that somehow, I completely missed the February edition of the Katy Kafé with Nick.
I don’t know how that happened, only that it did…and we’ll just leave it at that for now. My apologies. However, I’m back at it with for the March edition, and the guest in the Kafé this month was none other than Simon LeBon. As per usual, I am just going to do a summary of the highlights. If you really want to enjoy the Kafé, the best way is to get yourself a membership to duranduranmusic.com.
So, as every Kafé with Simon begins – it seems to take Katy a bit to reign him in. I listened with amusement as Simon told Katy that he likes coffee every once in a while. It seems to me that the very LAST thing Simon needs is caffeine…. One thing is certain, Simon has a lot of energy and he flits from one subject to the next as I’m busily writing notes and attempting to keep up. (it’s pretty impossible…) Somehow, I think he must know that we mere mortals just cannot. (keep up, that is.)
He explains, I think, that Sphere Studios is no longer Sphere Studios. The owner apparently has another studio here in the LA area that will be called Sphere, so the occupants of the studios in Battersea are voting on a new name.
(…Since everyone on the planet seems to know where to go when they get to the UK and Simon had no trouble mentioning where the infamous “studios” are located, I see no point in refraining from giving away the city here on the blog. If they’re not careful, I might just start posting the address. Maybe seeing fresh faces outside each day will give the band reason to finish the album….or if nothing else….I’ll get a restraining order out of the deal, and that would likely be entertaining for all involved….Ok, so I’m joking about the address. Don’t email me for it. I didn’t even know the place was in Battersea ’til yesterday, much less the actual address or directions. Yes, I’m really on top of things. I know.)
Simon’s idea is to call it the Southern Sun Studios. This makes me laugh because well, “sun” isn’t necessarily the first thing that comes to mind when I think of London. Perhaps that’s the point, as Simon goes on to acknowledge that yes, it does bring the label of Elvis Presley “Sun Records” to mind.
Katy takes this beautiful opportunity to once again try to pry some information out of LeBon…but he’s not playing along. I have to give Katy due credit, she really does try to get information out of him, or at least some sense of clarity. She realizes that to all of us out here – those of us who care, mind you – would really like to know what in the hell they’re doing in the studio each day. We want to know where they are as far as the album goes, and to be blunt – when are we gonna hear something new?! Katy makes the point that while John is saying the album will not be out until 2015, Nick is really still saying it will be a little earlier (at least he’s hopeful!)…and she asks Simon why there seems to be a disconnect. Simon doesn’t say a thing (seriously, there was dead silence in the Kafé at that point!) except to say that she should know by now he’s not going to give a single detail.
Fine then, Simon. Don’t play nicely. I may just have to resort to posting photos and video of your dance moves over the years and we’ll start voting and judging them. That’s fine….I’m sure I can find plenty to keep me busy until one of you decides to spill the secret, or better yet…the album is released.
Katy tries again, going for the “You know who we need in here? We need John Taylor” approach…because at least HE will give us some info. Except that according to Simon, they’re not sending John for interviews any longer. So the album is THAT secret?? You’d think they were afraid of a blog getting hold of all that precious and juicy information and misinformation, then spreading it throughout the internet, fan community and world… or something. Gee. Who’d really do that?!?
(We may speculate. We might continue speculating…but we would never post news that the band didn’t want out there. Not knowingly. That’s not our job, that’s not why we’re here, and that’s not something we would ever promote.)
Simon does say that he’s just finished playing some guitar on the song they’re currently working on , and says that the guitar is kind of a mix between The Cure and Johnny Cash. I can’t even imagine what that must sound like, and it appears I’ve got at least another nine months of wondering ahead of me. Yay.
So what else has Simon been up to? Recently he went to David Frosts’s memorial. David was given a stone at Westminster Abbey (the best description I can give: it’s a stone tile inserted into the wall of the Abbey)
Additionally, he tells Katy that he spends some time tinkering with his motorcycle…thus begins a short discussion of Simon suggesting that anyone who works on cars, motorcycles, etc should wear surgical gloves. Not a bad tip. They’re cheap and can be thrown out when the job is done, although Simon slyly comments that he might sell his on eBay when he’s finished. (He was KIDDING so don’t even think of running an eBay search for them!!) I grimaced, knowing that while the idea of buying such things might be, well…odd to me…he’d probably get a good price for them.
(As an aside, it is the knowledge of these types of things taking place amongst fans that still makes me question whether or not I want to be public about being a fan myself. Whether that makes me judgmental or not – it’s how I feel about being a fan sometimes.)
This led into a lively chat about Simon’s overall handy-work around the house. He admits that he once nearly electrocuted himself. I can’t even imagine how that happened, but I almost wish Simon had shared the story. You know, just because I’m curious. (No comments about curiosity killing the cat. I’m not the one who was nearly electrocuted!!) Katy then shares that one of the first times she visited his home in London, he’d pitched a tent outside. The things I’ve learned about members of this band over the years…. (yes, I’m musing.)
They continued on, speaking of British and American TV shows, accents and even books. Simon has been reading a lot of Stephen King as of late…(a future Simon’s reader author, maybe??), and interestingly enough, he even had dinner with Benedict Cumberbatch (Google him if you don’t know who it is) recently. Simon describes him as a very good person who is obsessed with film. I’d describe him as the perfect British actor (I adore his series, Sherlock)…and he has an open invitation to read stories to me any time he’d like. *coughs* Simon closes the Kafé by extending his condolences regarding L’Wren Scott to Mick Jagger. As abruptly as the Kafé began, it ended, and Simon was off for more work in the studio.
It is hard to believe that two years ago, we were reading postcards from the band while they were touring Australia in support of All You Need is Now. I can remember seeing pictures of band members basking in the sun on a boat and having “such a rough time” touring. Because it’s really hard having to remember to put on sunscreen and enjoy the day on the water, you know. It’s HARD to be a rock star, right?? That just seems like it happened a few weeks back, not two years!
Where does the time really go?!? On this date in 2012, they were in Perth, playing in Swan Valley. Who was there??
On this day in 1995, Duran Duran appeared on Top of the Pops to perform Perfect Day. In case you didn’t know, Top of the Pops was a show in the UK from the 1960s to 2006. It featured performances of popular music artists and a run-down of the week’s singles chart. From everything I know, appearing on the show was a big deal. For an upcoming band, it meant that they had finally made it. Duran Duran was on the show countless times to showcase everything from Planet Earth to Sunrise. It is interesting to me that Duran still appeared on the show for a song like Perfect Day since it was a cover. I was able to find it on youtube. Here it is. What do you think of the performance?
Last week, I asked the question, “When did you see Duran Duran live for the first time?” I got a ton of responses, totaled them and determined what year was most popular for Duranies to experience Duran live for the very first time. Yet, it seemed clear to me that there was a better way to phrase this, a better way to organize this first time experience and that was by actual tour vs. year. As we all know that some tours are short, in duration, and others can last years as the band will often have multiple legs to support a new album. For example, All You Need Is Now Tour started in 2011 and ended in 2012. It was longer than a year. Anyway, I’m more curious about what era/what album/what general time frame of the band’s history got people to buy their first Duran concert ticket. In order to find that out, I went to dd.com and their amazing list of concerts. They were so kind as to have divided up the shows into their various tours. Thus, I could find out exactly when one tour started and when it ended. Then, I have put those tours into an easy poll here. Your job, then, is to vote for the tour that you first saw Duran live. One vote.
I know that there were other questions that came up, including how old people were for their first show, which tour was the most popular and which tour had the largest number of songs in the setlist. I will get to all of those, in time. I promise. Until then…
On this day in 2011, the album, All You Need Is Now, was released on CD in the United States. As a big fan of this album, as someone who truly embraced her fandom during this era, I cannot help but to look at this date, this anniversary and smile widely.
In thinking about this day, I actually went back to read the blog post from that day, which you can read here. The blog post from that date features my partner-in-crime, feverish and anxious to get her hands on the physical album. It tells how the local Best Buy had to search and search for their TWO copies of the exclusive edition. Re-reading this filled me with joy–not that Rhonda was sick or that she struggled to get the album or, even though, it was funny, which it was. No, what made my heart beat a little harder was how excited she was, I was, the entire Duran world was. There was new Duran music!!!! We all wanted this so desperately and, finally, the very long wait was over!
After the smile fades, I feel a wave of sadness. I won’t lie. I miss the band. I miss the excitement of the AYNIN era. I miss it all. Instead of focusing on what I’m missing, though, I would rather hear about what your physical album release day was like. Did you, too, search at Best Buy? Did you struggle as much as Rhonda did?
On this day in 1998, the album, Decade, went platinum (sold 1 million copies). As you all know, Decade is the first greatest hits album that Duran Duran released. It was released in November of 1989. Thus, it took awhile to sell. It was not an album that did particularly well in the charts, at least not in the US, as it reached its highest chart position at 67, according to Billboard. Interestingly enough, the song, Burning the Ground, was done to promote the album; yet, it isn’t featured on the album. Another thing that is interesting about the album is the songs that were chosen, as not all singles were selected. Likewise, the songs that were included did not all feature album versions. I remember hearing or reading somewhere that Duran did not want to do this album, but had to do a greatest hits album, per contractual obligations. Does anyone know this is true? Does anyone have a source to confirm this?
Now, I have to admit that I did not run out to the store to get this album when it came out. I do remember buying it at some point in the early 1990s and became addicted to I Don’t Want Your Love soon afterwards. What about the rest of you? Did you run out to buy a copy? What did/do you think of the song selection? I thought it would be fun to include the video for Burning the Ground since it was made to promote this album.