Tag Archives: fans

Careless Memories of a Mad World, LA style!

Yesterday afternoon, I packed up my Mad World book, picked up my own chauffeur from work (my husband!), some Daily Duranie wristbands (do you have yours yet?!?), my camera and made my way up to the Sunset Strip to one of my favorite bookstores: Book Soup!  My mission was to have my book signed by Lori Majewski and Jonathan Bernstein, authors of Mad World.  I’d never been to a book signing that had a DJ along for the ride, spinning tunes as we stood in line.  My husband Walt commented as we stood in line hearing Echo and The Bunnymen that it felt like we’d been propelled back in time to the early 80s. Observant, that husband of mine…. I loved the music, and yes, I did stay long enough to catch the familiar chords of Girls on Film flowing in the air.  But back to that signing…

Book Soup is not a huge bookstore. It is this fabulous, homey feeling bookstore in the heart of the Strip. Situated just up the street from the likes of the Key Club, Viper Room and The Whisky among others, it’s in an unlikely spot, which is very much part of it’s charm. It reminds me of the independent bookstores I’d find on the main street of Glendora or Covina – my home town(s).  Not only can one find books in Book Soup, but there’s vinyl as well – bonus!!

As I arrived last night and stepped into the store, there was no way you couldn’t be immediately swept away back to the 80’s. Kajagoogoo was playing, and no – I can’t listen to “Too Shy” without thinking of Nick Rhodes. I’m forever cursed. Thanks Nick. I wound my way to the line snaking around the perimeter of one side of the store, and as I stood in line, I dared myself to think back to what it was like listening to these songs in the 80s.  I was pretty young back then, and if I only knew where it all might lead me… (and if I could figure that out now, well, maybe I’d actually be making a decent living!!) I just remember a time when I could turn on the radio and song after song would carry me away from my teenage problems to a world of daydreams.  Nowadays I struggle to find a regular radio station that I can actually stand to listen to more than a song or two. The joys of aging, I suppose.

I looked up as I stood in line and caught the wandering eye of Lori Majewski,  as she glanced to see how far back the line began. She  waved. I started to wave back but then thought to myself, wait a minute. She couldn’t possibly recognize you, Rhonda. She doesn’t even KNOW you. Now you’re waving like an idiot. Awesome. So I looked around, only to find that no one else was looking up.  She was waving my way after all.  Great job, self-confidence.  *begin slow clap here*  I swear it was it was my own personal Ducky moment from Pretty in Pink.  (watch the end of the movie if you don’t know what I mean…and why on earth do you not know what I mean?!?)

As I recovered from that moment (there are just times when I’m glad the band ISN’T there, you know??), I saw Patty Palazzo walk past me – and so I did what any normal person might do any Duranie might do, I got out of line to go say hi! I’d never met Patty before, but I have exchanged emails a few times….and actually, we’d agreed to talk that night about setting up an interview for the blog!! (I’m so excited about this news that I might burst! No really. I just ate carrot cake. I might honestly burst.) I don’t know where my courage came from because I am really not this brave ever, but I walked up and said hello, and even dared to hug her.  *gasp* I don’t know WHERE that came from, because my friends – Rhonda is not a hugger. I like personal space. I am not touchy-feely.  But I hugged Patty last night, and I’m pretty sure I violated her personal space.  Maybe this is why I’ve never really gotten anywhere near the band…I’m a closet hugger!!! *gasp* This is really why I should never be allowed to go to events like this unattended. (meaning without Amanda) I even got Patty and a few new friends to wear our Daily Duranie wristbands! Amanda should be so proud…because I had those darn wristbands in my bag, and I kept thinking to myself: do I dare hand them out? Really? Should I? Will I look as super cool as I do right now if I hand them out?

(The answer is no. No Rhonda…you never looked super cool to begin with, so…you’re safe. Go with it.) So I did! Never mind that it took my darling husband three or four tries to get a decent photo…

wristbands

Before I knew it, we were up to the front and Jonathan Bernstein was doing everything possible to make sure I knew it was time to hand over my book. I was too mesmerized by the process to see that he was practically grabbing my book out of my hands. (so sorry!) The next thing I knew, I was being introduced to Lori Majewski by Patty, and we’d set up a time to get together for something I’m not going to talk about just yet…you’ll have to just watch this space! (Again, I’m really thinking I might burst. Remind me that carrot cake is never an acceptable breakfast substitute…)

photo

It’s blurry (sorry Jonathan…I hope your photographer was better than mine!)…but it is a very cool memory.  Admittedly I am fangirling just a bit over meeting Lori. Back in the day, before writing Mad World, before Teen People, she was the editor of a Duran fanzine. How cool is that?? I don’t know where in the hell I was back then, but I intend to ask her all about that…when we meet up for that thing I’m not going to talk about just yet!

If that weren’t enough, and it’s really not EVER enough (I believe there’s a John Taylor quote to be had somewhere in there), after I had my books signed I had the chance to run into Duranie friends.  I know that I’ve lamented here about how much I miss the band, and I do. Maybe that’s overly sentimental, but I miss seeing them play and I especially miss that sense of “one-ness” that we all feel with them when the show is going right. We’re all in that same place together feeling the same thing. It’s a remarkably cool feeling that I hope all fans get to experience at one time or another. However, it’s in moments like some that I had last night that I remember how much I miss my friends from afar. Friends from the UK, Europe, the midwest, east, northwest…southeast…I’ve been very lucky to have made real friends in a multitude of places, and last night I had just the smallest taste of getting to see some of them again. We don’t gather very often, and it was really nice to catch up with a few of them. Friendships are the one collective “thing” about being a Duranie I treasure most. Well, there is the music too…I mean, duh… (can’t really forget to mention the band, can I??), but I love seeing friends from all over.

The night ended relatively early for us, as we had to get back home, but it was really a great night and I’m glad I went to the signing. If you haven’t gotten your copy of Mad World yet, do yourself a favor and look for it on Amazon. I have read the entire thing once and am going back through it a second time.  Jonathan and Lori did a fantastic job interviewing all of the bands, and there is just so much information in there – things we never would have ever known about the music we grew up with.  It is genuinely worth the read.  You should see my book, I was telling Jonathan last night as we left that my book is all marked up, highlighted, red-lined, complete with notes in the margin!  (Note to self: next time, bring a book that is not already marked up with your notes in it…)

-R

 

 

 

Today in Duran History – The Reflex!

If you’re a Duranie and you have a heartbeat (which is likely since you’re reading), chances are, you already KNOW what today is in Duran history.  If you’ve been on Twitter or Facebook this week, you should know this, but I’m not into Pop (Ha ha, I made a funny) Quizzes, so I will spill: on today’s date in 1984, The Reflex was released.

Thirty years ago, people.  Thirty years.

Now, I’m not saying you’re getting old or anything, particularly if you weren’t around to hear The Reflex on the radio the day it was released…but I was.  So….there’s that.  Happy days!!

For many Duranies, this was the song that made them cross the bridge, dance on the valentine, and swear they would be Duranies forever more.  I wouldn’t know about that, because well, I was already a Duranie for a few years before this song came out.  (again, we’re not saying old, but…)  My partner-in-crime claims this date as her Duranniversary (I have played around with the spelling of that word more than I ever care to count…I’m going with this one!), so Happy Anniversary, Amanda!!  Thirty years, thirty some shows??? (There would be more if the band ever decided to do some more shows. Just saying, because I can.)

Moving on…

I can remember hearing  The Reflex on the radio in 1984, but it really wasn’t until I was in marching band in about October of 1984 that other kids in band started telling me about the song. I would patiently stand there, listen, and roll my eyes back into my head when they would say it was new…because by then it was SO six months ago…but that Nile Rodgers remix did something special with it, and I can remember friends, even friends who *gasp* were not into Duran Duran, thinking it was cool.  Because it was.  Maybe it wasn’t the best DD song ever written, maybe it was.  One thing is certain: there was something special there…and here we are thirty years later.

-R

#DDReflex8414  (I probably don’t get extra brownie points for posting the hashtag on the blog, but that’s OK!)

It’s a very very MAD WORLD.

As promised, today I’m going to give a brief review (with no spoilers!!) of Lori Majewski and Jonathan Bernstein’s new book, Mad World which is out today!

First of all (and most important), I want to disclose that Lori approached Amanda and I several months back about helping them out with promo for Mad World.  While the typical “Are you sure she meant to contact us? I mean…we’re just a couple of fans!!” were made between Amanda and I, we were (and are) extremely honored. I suppose we could act cool, calm, collected and professional and put off an air of “Well of course they’d want our help”…that’s not exactly our style. Amanda and I are simply fans. Like you. We began this blog from that very simple two word fact, and that’s how we’re going to continue, forevermore.  I should also disclose that I received a copy of the book early for review – and that has never happened before, so for us, this is a first, and we are completely honored by the opportunity.  Maybe that’s overreaching on our part, maybe we’ll be slammed for saying so; but for Amanda and I, the way we see it is that someone out there sees the good we’re doing, and we’re very, very proud of that.

However, that won’t stop me from bringing forth an objective review….just so we’re clear about how much I adore this book.

I don’t want to give a lot away about Mad World because I really want everyone to go get their own copy.  But, if you could see mine – you’d see it completely red-lined and highlighted. Yes, I still read as though I’m reading for a college course.  If you take away just one thing from my review – I want our readers to know that reading this book makes the songs sound new again.  Let me try to explain.  Let’s face it: these songs are around thirty years old now.  At one point or another, the songs started fading into the background. I might still listen to the music. I might (I do) still have nearly all of them included on my trusty mp3 player, but I don’t really hear them the way I once did.  I don’t pay attention to every last drum beat, or every single crescendo or synth loop.  I still love the music, but I don’t feel the music as much. It doesn’t completely consume me.  Or at least it didn’t before Mad World.  

Once I started reading though, that all changed. The book is basically divided into chapters that correspond with songs.  So for example there is a chapter called Girls on Film. I’m pretty sure you can guess what and who that’s all about.  Jonathan and Lori give their initial thoughts on the song (and band in a broad sense), then they include the interviews done with the band about that particular song – since this is an oral history. What I really like is the song is discussed in the original historical context – “How was it back in the 80s”, and then they have a section called “That was then, this is now”; and in that section the song is talked about from the present point of view.  So, I found myself listening to the song before reading the chapter, then reading the chapter, and going back to listen to the song again.  I couldn’t help but hear the song differently. It was as though my ears were reinvigorated!

This is not a book that I would critique based on writing style, or how much “dirt” was drummed up about the subject…although I feel that the bands involved seemed to be incredibly forthcoming and honest about their work, which is refreshing.   Of course the writing is good. and I love that Lori and Jonathan are true to themselves. When they are fans, they say so and own it rather than try to play the “We are completely professional and above it all” card.  Their commentaries are rooted in reality, and it is obvious that they enjoyed the work that went into the writing.  However, the real star(s) of the book are the interviews. I learned so much in reading, and it wasn’t the big picture stuff that resonated – it was the little things.  I could really get a sense of the emotionality that some of the artists interviewed continue to carry with them about songs that were written so long ago. I felt some of the heartbreak that others had when they looked back.  I could even hear the anger, despair, distain and even apathy of others for their fellow band members.  Those points in the book make the songs whole.  It’s as though now I’ve got the full story – the 360 degree view.

This isn’t a book that could have been written as successfully even ten years ago.  So many of these people needed to get past their own egos, whether they were overly trumped up, or completely deflated in the years gone by.  It has taken this long for many of them to simply come to terms with what took place, which is why I really believe the interviews worked so well.  In all honesty, I think that I needed to become an adult in order to fully treasure their stories.

Lori and Jonathan say that they wanted Mad World to be a fan friendly book. They have taken the route of going directly TO the fans to answer our questions, and get us involved. I have to give them kudos for doing so, because I believe the evidence is clear: it worked.

I am an 80s kid. I was born in November of 1970 and so when the year 1980 rolled around, I was 9 years old. My formative years were spent in the 80s, and when I think about the music I love, New Wave from 80s is the first to come to mind. It is a vital portion of my personal soundtrack, my playlist.  Mad World fills in the gaps, the things I pondered while laying on my not-quite-orange but also not-quite-brown shag bedroom carpet listening to my stereo and staring at my green walls peppered with pinups of Duran Duran when I was a kid.  Definitely worth the read.

Amanda and I plan to do more with Mad World in the coming weeks – so watch this space!

-R

To order your copy: Mad World 

Today in Duran History – Glasgow and a bit of Mad World

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

On today’s date in 2004, Duran Duran played the SECC in Glasgow.

Do you want to know what I remember about Glasgow, and the SECC in particular?  It was bloody FREEZING in there.  I remember sitting and waiting for a show in December of 2011, complete with my down ski parka on…continuing to shiver.  I don’t think I completely thawed out again until I touched down back in California, a day and a half later.  Naturally, that was in the month of December…and this show took place in April.  So there’s that, right?  Who was there in 2004??

Also, today is officially MAD WORLD day!  That’s right, the release of Mad World – the book that all New Wave 80s music lovers should have, hold and caress fondly (but never nostalgically….no. We can’t have that…because we, my friends…are not old. We’re not nostalgic. We just know good music.), has been released today!!  If you haven’t already pre-ordered your copy and you’re not waiting by your front door to tackle the mailman or UPS guy, I urge you to rectify the situation immediately and order it from Amazon!!  Why, you ask?  I’m reviewing it.  Later today.

In the meantime, check out the Reddit AMA with Lori & Jonathan: Mad World Reddit

Need a link to grab the book?  Fear not, my friends.  I’ve got you covered: Mad World.

-R

Today in Duran History – John Taylor in Tokyo

On this date in 2001, John Taylor did promo work in Tokyo…and since I don’t have any other exciting information to add to that (if anyone else does, send it in!), I’ll also add that on this date in 2011, the band played the Fox Theater in Pomona California as part of their All You Need is Now Tour!  I was there for this one, and I can say – it was a great show.  They played Friends of Mine on this night and nearly brought the house down when it played.

Lastly, I have it on good authority from DDHQ that The Reflex has an anniversary coming up.  #30 is coming up on Wednesday.  If you’re on Twitter, they’ve been using the hash tag #DDReflex8414 to celebrate.

Busy week ahead – my kids are on Spring Break, so a very Happy Monday to you and yours!  If you caught the blog earlier, you may have noticed that I had the wrong month’s worth of dates today.

All I will say is that it’s Monday and my children are home on break.  I think that explains it all.

-R

I’ve got something to say

Did you know that on this date in 2009, Simon blogged that the band had left Sony records?

In 2009, I was still very active on duranduranfans.com…and once in a while, we’d have a visitor on the message boards named Moocher.  I remember Moocher well.  Why? Moocher liked “actively debating” with me.

It was no secret on that board that I was no fan of Red Carpet Massacre. I was positive that the band would leave Sony, or Sony would leave the band. I didn’t know how or when, only that it was inevitable. From my point of view, it felt to me as though the band was poorly mismatched with the producer of choice for Red Carpet Massacre (and as I write this I remember Moocher giving me grief for always calling the album RCM as opposed to writing it out), and given the sales of that album as well as Astronaut – it seemed likely that one way or another, the band would part ways with Sony.

The day before Simon blogged about the parting with Sony, an interesting post showed up on ddf written by none other than Moocher. That poster and I had words more than once on the board,  our disagreements always remained respectful, but we were both passionate about our feelings. On this particular day, Moocher said that news was about to hit that the band left Sony – and my comments about the band, their attitudes (in fact Moocher quoted me several times) and what I felt lay in their future, were called on the carpet. I know that I had upset Moocher by saying that RCM wasn’t up to par over the prior months – our discussions had generally centered themselves around that topic. Moocher went on to describe the great love s/he had for Red Carpet Massacre, and that no label could ever take that from them. Grinning broadly as I read Moochers smack down, I agreed, and I still do.  For example, there are times when I complete a post for this blog, but I know it’s not my best work. That doesn’t stop me from loving my work – but I know in the back of my mind that I can still do better. I can’t imagine it’s much different with the band and their music. That said, I’ve never been shy about my opinion, even back in 2009. I loved the band, enough to be honest about what I saw, heard and felt. Moocher loved the band just as much if not more, and I respected that.

So that day, I chuckled when I saw Moochers post. I knew much of the post was directed solely at me, and that I deserved some of that ire. The next day, when Simon’s blog appeared at dd.com, it was strikingly similar to what had been written on ddf by Moocher.  Coincidence?? We will never know….

This story brings me to a similar point I want to make about this blog.   I mentioned a couple weeks ago that I was taking a bit of a hiatus from the rigors of writing lengthy blogs each day. The truth is, I was very burned out. I was becoming increasingly negative about everything from the band themselves to the fans…emphasis on the fans.

I’m not sure if other fans really understand what it’s like to write a blog. I know that when we started this insanity, I had no idea what I was really in for. One day, I just started writing without a lot of thought as to whom might be reading. In hindsight, I think our “blog” really started back when I was still posting on ddf. I think the very first “post” was likely my review of the fan show in NYC 2007. (It was not a good review) The only difference between that first post and now is the web address, really.

The way the blog is supposed to work (for me), is that I sit down and begin writing without a lot of thought into how the community-at-large will react. For a long time, that worked. I would write and either no one would comment, or the only people that did comment were those who agreed. About the time that the blog started getting notice from other fans, the first dissenting opinions showed up. They came as a surprise, in moments I wouldn’t have expected, but I never minded having a discussion. Sometimes I learned things, and sometimes I changed my mind about things I’d written. Those comments broadened my view. In a lot of ways, I was thankful for those discussions, because they made me see that people were reading and reacting, which was fantastic.

Naturally, things didn’t always stay so friendly. Some people took my opinion extremely personally…and maybe that was needed. Maybe some didn’t like the mirror I was holding. I don’t know for sure, but it’s impossible for me not to notice the reactions: I’ve been kicked out of private online communities of “friends”, I’ve been blocked from people who I thought mattered (to me), I’ve made business decisions for the greater good that ended up ruining friendships, I’ve had complete strangers call me everything from “bitch” (probably accurate and I don’t apologize) to “cunt” (totally uncalled for), and I’ve been called a “sad loser” more times than I can count. (Whatever. I was in band all through school. You think I haven’t heard that one before? Get some creativity.) Oh yes, there’s also my very favorite…”Durantard” (that one earns a slow clap for brilliance.)

On the opposite end of the spectrum, I’ve been friended solely because someone has thought I knew the band and could get them into shows or backstage (If only!!), I’ve made many, many other friends because they started reading the blog; found me on Twitter and became more than just a screen name, I’ve had drinks bought for me many times (those are ALWAYS appreciated, I promise), and I’ve learned so, so much. I have learned to have much respect for the band’s management, friends of band members (you know who you are), and other journalists who were once bloggers like me. That doesn’t mean that I always agree with decisions that are made or methods with which things are done. I just have deep respect for the fact that they have a much different view on that side than I might here, and I definitely do not know it all.

I never meant for this blog to become a career, so it’s a good thing that it isn’t! It was really meant to just be fun. I wasn’t thinking ahead when I started writing posts for the blog. Clearly not! It’s name alone should have made me take a pause and think of the implications. One of the kindest compliments I’ve ever gotten about the blog was simply that they could tell I write from a very authentic place. I do. Right or wrong, on any given day when you read this – they are my real feelings. This blog is a reflection of what I really think. If you want to really know me, this is a very good place to begin. While I’m quieter and a lot more shy in person, this blog (my posts, anyway) is still me. I guess I’m just brave enough to put it out there and allow it all to be picked over. Funny, I never thought of it being brave until I realized that so many others are even afraid to sign their names to a silly comment. (again, that earns a slow clap)

The real trouble with putting yourself out there though, is that over time, it begins to feel as though you’re on a slow simmer over an open fire. I started worrying about what to say here that wouldn’t cause a riot on Facebook. I started worrying about what other people were saying about me, and most importantly – I started wondering about whether I was really still a fan of Duran Duran. Then I remembered what one of the people I admire most in this world – the fandom world – said to me.  She said to me, “Rhonda, it’s clear that you and Amanda have fun with the blog, and that’s part of it’s charm. When it stops being fun, then it’s time to go.”  You see, she knows of what I’m writing because she’s been there herself. It is unbelievable how you can have plenty of people “following” you, and yet feel so incredibly alone as though you’re on a quickly shrinking iceberg in the middle of a boiling pot of water. I didn’t want to give up the blog completely, but I needed a break. So I took one. If the band can be on hiatus, then damn it, so can I. So I am. Or I was. I’m not really sure.

There is genuinely no winning this game until you can stop feeling – and if I stop feeling, then I can’t very well still be a fan, and if I can’t be a fan, what in the hell am I doing here? That’s the question I ask myself as I write. Daily.

What I’ve derived as the conclusion for now is that I’m going to keep writing my opinions here. I am probably not always going to like what Duran Duran says or does. I’m probably not going to make any of you very happy with me. I’m going to poke fun, be demanding and impatient, be snarky, laugh at myself, love on the band, and then turn around and gush over Dom Brown because darn it – that’s what I want to do. I don’t care that the rest of you don’t think he’s a member. It’s MY blog. It’s Amanda’s blog. If you don’t like it, then stop reading.

Daily Duranie is not going to be a reflection of what anybody else thinks, says or does in this community except ourselves, and we really don’t care if the rest of you don’t like it. We ARE anxious for the next album. We DO want them to hurry. We DON’T like it when John Taylor says they don’t need to tour. We’re FANS. Of course we want all of those things!! When the day comes that I sit back and blog here that I don’t care if the band ever tours again or that I’m happy to sit back and wait a few years for the next album, one of you had better come take my pulse, because I may have died. It’s not out of greed I say those things, it’s out of love for them. I’m a big fan and I want to see them again! I am exactly who I say I am.

The comments are still going to be open, and if you’ve got something to say that can be written respectively and thoughtfully for discussion, we’ll be happy to respond. Otherwise it’s probably going to get tossed out with the garbage. I’ve never said that before, but I am now. Amanda and I don’t need to put up with the nonsense, and we’re just not. This blog is ours. I’m going back to having fun now!

-R

 

Daily Duranie Guest Blog – Just Very

Today we’re very lucky to have a guest blog from none other than Fabiana Torras, who along with her cohorts from Argentina, were the winners of the TV Mania Franchise contest with their song “Just Very”.  Fabiana explains all about the franchise, and how they created such a brilliant entry!

By Fabiana Torras

The idea of the TV Mania franchise was to open things up for people to become TV Mania elsewhere, as explained on the TV Mania website. We figured people could be TV Mania by actually following our Manifesto and for fun, and actually adhering to certain principles that TV Mania has, like using samples of people talking along with rhythm boxes and sampled analog synthesizers, and then putting it all together.  So you just simply apply for a license to be TV Mania. So, If you´re in…Buenos Aires, and you wanna be TV Mania Buenos Aires, you have a look and then you apply and we give you an official TV Mania license. And then you can perform, send us music and video material, remixes, anything you like, and we put them up on the site. So we´re hoping that there´ll be a lot of TV Manias around the world”. – Nick Rhodes (answering my question at a TV Mania event in Second Life)

TV Mania for Daily Duranie 4 Manifesto
In case you ever wondered what that TV Mania Manifesto was really all about…

That might just be the best answer I ever received to a question  I asked. As an extra bonus, it was Nick Rhodes who answered it. On that exact day, March 2nd 2013, not only did I receive an answer to what I wanted to know on the first of the Second Life TV Mania events; I also got the name of the future franchise Gerardo, Pablo and I would apply for: TV Mania Buenos Aires.  This was not an instant thing, though. We had to wait for six months for the franchise to be up and running, but at this point we all know Durantime affects side projects as well, don´t we?

Last September, as soon as the franchise was up, we applied and got the confirmation email with our name´s approval and the download links for the “Franchise Pack”, which included samples and music of the songs Euphoria, Beautiful Clothes, Paramount and I Wanna Make Films. We were in! All we needed now was an idea and time to make it happen.

Our first meeting was set on a Friday night after we all got off work, mostly to discuss what direction our project would take. To be honest, we didn´t actually meet face to face until there was a deadline; as much as we loved the idea of “being the band” and enter a contest with absolutely fantastic prizes for any Duranie, everyday life makes you so tired that sometimes if someone doesn´t push you, you just do not move (See? Limits are good!). We had to make a song or a remix and shoot some video for it, since every song you sent was going to be uploaded to TV Mania´s official Youtube playlist. And from the first moment we started thinking about our franchise project, we all agreed it had to be something related to our local TV and the video had to show our city to the world, but in a “TV Mania” sort of way.

A list of famous phrases from Argentine TV was made and we recorded about 50 at Pablo´s home (he has a little studio of his own there), but ended up using only 9 of those. You can hear the three of us on our track, along with Pablo´s wife, Cecilia, who was very happy to help. We also wanted to include samples of Nick and Warren in our song, so we asked permission to use the audios of the Second Life events to sample the guys and we were very happy to get a green light from TV Mania. There was a precious bit of Nick we were dying to use where he said “TV Mania Buenos Aires”; I mean, we just had to have that, right?

Once we chose the bits of Nick and Warren that were going to be used, we wrote and recorded the samples in English (it is my voice you hear, by the way), and afterwards we began to write the music, which was completely new. We decided not to use anything from the downloaded franchise pack and try to come up with something fresh and original, respecting the TV Mania essence. For the video, the plan was to film different Buenos Aires landmarks and ourselves in what we thought could be TV Mania-esque outfits and colours.  That was how “Just Very” was born.

Here’s the video link to watch for yourselves!  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3WLnDzsAlDE

Now, as I write and tell you all of this, I get the feeling it doesn´t seem to be that hard, does it? But there are lots of things you need to know how to do in order to make all of this happen. It´s not that easy to make and mix music, operate a camera and film proper video, edit both music and video, and I am not counting the “standing in front of a camera” process which many people may find uncomfortable (with zero budget, little time and no volunteers, it´s you and you alone doing that!). There were many things we had to use to accomplish our goal and I am glad we were such a great team, because I know that I alone could never have done what we did as a group.

Nevertheless, being more than one person doing something together means you have to find a common ground to stand on when you make decisions, and you can trust me when I say that isn´t always a simple task.  For example, when the time of sending the final song to TV Mania came some of us did not want to include the samples in Spanish and some of us did. It took us a LONG TIME to agree on that. In the end, we put it to a vote and decided to send an “Ambient Mix” of our song that didn´t have samples in Spanish. For the video of that one, we simply added some colour effects to the original one and sent both “Just Very” and “Just Very (Ambient Mix)” for approval.

A few hours later we got the news of our videos being up on the official TV Mania Franchise Playlist on Youtube, and a couple of deadlines later (the contest deadline was pushed twice extending it for 2 and a half months) we found out via TV Mania´s Twitter account that we were the TV Mania Franchise Grand Prize winners for “Just Very”.

To this day, we still think it´s a dream….which is why I’ve included this photo (a memento from the Skype session we won with Nick and Warren as result of the contest!)

IMG_0029

Just as Duran Duran likes to do for their liner notes…we’re including a list of what we used:

  • Ableton Live 8
  • Synths: Albino Vst synth/Atmosphere Vst synth/Korg M1  Vst Synth/ Korg wavestation synth/Orange vocoder
  • Electronic drums: 707 sounds/808 sounds/Ez Drummer
  • Guitar: Fx Boss GT8 / digitech rp7 valve/ Steinberger Spirit guitar
  • Adobe Premiere (video)

yo

Fabiana is from Buenos Aires, Argentina. She´s been a Duranie since 1988 when she was 10 and loves the band, side projects (well, duh!) and mostly all the fan-tastic people she´s met because of them. She has a major in Journalism and Communications and at the moment is finishing her Community Manager & Social Media graduate studies. She works for a private university where she manages an academic department (not as fun as seeing #Duranlive!) and is looking forward for the next Duran Duran album and tour. No need to convince an angry boyfriend to let her go see them live: he is a huge Duranie!

When you think of Duran Duran, what is the first video to pop into your head?

Yesterday, I was avoiding real work and looking over Facebook. I’d posted a link to an online poll regarding iconic 80s videos, and the subject got me thinking.  What is the FIRST video that comes to mind when I think of Duran Duran?

For me, it’s Rio. Keep in mind, I wasn’t considering my favorite video, or what might have been the first video I ever saw for Duran Duran – but rather the one that comes first to mind.  When I think of Duran Duran, I can’t help but think of that yacht, the gorgeous water, the neon “champagne”…the pink rotary telephone…the sun, those silk suits…Andy being thrown overboard… it all reminds me of the band.

I wondered about other people…did it make a difference as to when people became fans?  What about male/female choices?  Would they be the same?  So I decided to conduct an off-the-cuff, completely scientific poll.  I asked a simple (or what I thought was simple) question: What is the first video that comes to mind when I say Duran Duran.

In asking, I made a couple of assumptions: ONE – that people who answered knew their videos. TWO – that people could actually understand what I was asking.

Thankfully, I didn’t have anyone ask about the band. So there’s that.

However, as always – a few people couldn’t come up with one video. I’m usually amused by the people who simply refuse to make a choice. Even if I promise that Duran Duran isn’t reading, that they don’t care and that this is NOT going to be sent to them as some sort of “A HA!!! Just LOOK at what your fans are thinking!” Some people just cannot choose. The band should be immensely proud that there are folks out there that just want them all.  All the time. Everything must be equal. I had someone tell me that making them choose one video is like choosing between children.  After I uncrossed my eyes, I contemplated the comment.

To begin with, I’m not in that camp. I will openly tell you what song is my favorite, what albums I feel should have been discarded before they were released, I’ll even go as far as to say what band member is my very favorite and why.  I don’t even KNOW the band personally and I still have my favorites.  I am obviously completely heartless.  AND opinionated.  I’ve been called a bully before, by fellow fans, because I have told them they have to choose or they can’t vote.  I’m really not a bully.  I grew up being the one who was bullied much of the time – but I do insist that if you’re gonna play, you play by my rules.  This is my blog post, these are my rules.  Simple.

My bark is much worse than my bite, but don’t tell anybody that.  It’s OUR little secret.

I really didn’t ask anyone to choose, though. I just asked what video came to mind first. That doesn’t mean it must be the favorite video, or even the video you happened to see first, although I can certainly agree that perhaps the very first video ever seen could possibly be the one that comes to mind first. That makes sense.

Someone else mentioned that the video that comes to mind for them first isn’t necessarily the most iconic. Fair statement. I’m going to ask that very question at some point and see if the answers differ.  Why? Because I have real work to do and I’m looking to avoid reading about patents and types of corporations for as long as possible.

So what about those answers?  Rio was the runaway answer here, earning nearly four times as many votes as anything else mentioned. I don’t think that would necessarily surprise the band.  I once received a comment from an entirely anonymous person, explaining the band’s image to me.  Yachts, supermodels…SEX…(gasp!!).  If it weren’t for that image, maybe things would have been different for the band. Yes, that one decision may have made all the difference.  Maybe they would have continued opening for bands like Fashion, for instance.  I really don’t know.

What I did find interesting was that even with a question like this, there were a plethora of answers. Everything from Rio to Girl Panic was mentioned.  The top answers were: Rio, Girls on Film (yes, I did pay attention here and most, but not all votes on this one were from men.  I can’t say I blame them.), Save a Prayer, Planet Earth, The Reflex and yes…Hungry Like the Wolf.  And we wonder why those songs are on nearly every set list…

What I couldn’t really tell from the votes and would really like to know is just how much the timing of when someone became a fan (meaning what album was out at the time) and what the first video someone saw had to do with the video chosen. Not that it’s all very scientific – I just like doing these polls.  There’s something therapeutic in counting hashtags instead of reading up on LLC’s, I guess.  Now I see why Amanda does them every day.

This is the first real blog I’ve written in a while. I don’t know if anyone has really noticed, but I’ve taken a bit of a hiatus of my own as of late.  I needed a break.  I still wrote (and will continue) the Day in Duran History during the week as a short blog, but other than that – I was living Daily Duranie “free”.  There’s a number of reasons for this, but I figure if the band can take breaks and take years to put out albums, I can take breaks too.  When they start breaking news for us, you can bet I’ll be back to posting on a daily basis. Until then, when I have something to say, I’ll post it.

-R

 

Changing and Expanding

Over the past several weeks, we have had many people – some well-intentioned, some otherwise, tell Amanda and I that we’re asking a lot of ourselves to come up with a daily blog about the band; or about being fans of this band.

I would agree. It IS a lot to ask ourselves. It never started out to be that way – I loved the name (still do), and at the time we had plenty to write about. More than plenty! There always seemed to be something that would come up.  I knew the time would come when there would be a long dry spell in between albums, and I wondered how we would weather that period, but I figured (as I usually do) that we would cross that bridge when we found it.  We have done far, far better than I would have hoped.

The fact is, this blog is about being a fan…and we are betting that many of you have other interests besides Duran Duran, whether or not they include certain TV shows (I’m a sucker for Sherlock and Scandal myself), other bands (The Killers is near the top of my list), or something else entirely.  As much as Amanda and I have done our due diligence of research on Duran Duran,  I think she’d agree that we’ve likely done far, far more on Fandom itself at this point – something that will likely continue, as will our blogs about being fans.

We recognize that for many of you – your interest with this blog and especially Amanda and I, begins and ends with Duran Duran, and we understand. However, we’ve decided to expand, and as a result we will be throwing other things up for discussion here on a more regular basis from here on out.  Don’t leave yet!  Likely, readers might not notice much difference – except that now I’m making the public announcement that we’re going to be slowly expanding the blog beyond being Duran Duran fans.  We are still kicking around ideas for how that might happen, but there will definitely be a slow evolution taking place. It was never our intention to solely rely on Duran Duran to be the vehicle of our existence. We had always planned to expand in the long term, but it was finding the right time, and both Amanda and I feel that time is near.  That doesn’t mean we’ll leave Daily Duranie behind or that we’ll stop discussing Duran Duran altogether, only that we’ll be expanding our horizons and letting our insanity run wild through other fandoms as well!

This is where our readers – you – come into play.  We obviously want to cover fandoms and topics that you are interested in.  The sky is really the limit here, and we’ll try almost anything once!!  So, I invite you to drop us a line. Let us know what you like.  Tell us what you’d like to read about.  Send us an email: dailyduranie@gmail.com.

Additionally, we would like to invite submissions for guest blogs. If you have a particular subject that you’re interested in writing about that has to do with fandom, not necessarily Duran Duran fandom – let’s say you’re a big Harry Potter fan and went to a convention, or you adore Star Trek and even write FILK (songs) – or perhaps you’ve been Sherlocked and want to write all about it, we’re inviting you to write an article and send it to our gmail for submission consideration.  We are pretty open to reading whatever is sent to us, and if we think it’ll fit – we’ll publish it here for all the world to see!

Our guidelines are simply that the article (blog) must be formatted and edited (meaning that it needs to be written in a word processing program of some sort as opposed to sent to us at Facebook, and we ask that you please spell check your work.). Additionally, proper grammar is not only appreciated, it is expected.  Please do not send in submissions that were written as though you’re texting a friend, thank you.  We prefer length to be under 1000 words.  (although if you have an amazing article that is over that amount, we can talk about it)  Daily Duranie has final say over submissions, and we do not pay for publication.

If accepted for publishing, Amanda or I will make contact and request that the author send a small photo and a short 5-6 line bio about themselves for publication. Just as it was back on our blogger site, authors will receive byline credit as well as have a nifty thumbnail photo and bio published with each accepted article.

Change is not easy for any of us, including Amanda and I. It is difficult to know exactly what direction to travel, and we’ve always allowed this blog to sort of evolve organically as opposed to forcing it in one direction or another. We feel as though it’s come to a natural point where it’s time to expand just a little and see how it feels. We hope that many, if not all of our readers, will appreciate some fresh air with what is to come and stick with us for the journey!

-R