Tag Archives: Happy Birthday

Happy 58th Birthday, Roger!

My favorite original member of Duran Duran has a birthday today.  That alone makes me smile! I love the days when I can gush unabashedly, particularly when the person involved is my favorite.

I have been a Roger-girl from as close to day one of my fandom as possible. The Planet Earth video certainly may have had something to do with it, as would any of the band pictures they’ve ever taken. I liked that he seemed quiet and shy, because I was too. I felt like I was able to relate to him, even though I knew (even as an adolescent) that I was way the hell out of his league. I think that is what made Roger “safe” for me as a crush: there was little chance of being rejected because he didn’t even know I existed, unlike the boys at school who would openly call me “ugly” or gag when I would walk by. (Oh yes, it happened, far more than often than I care admit) If nothing else, Roger was safe to crush on purely because there was zero chance I’d ever meet him.

Like many, I was sad for me, happy for him when he got married, and far more so when it was announced he’d left the band in 1986. I always wondered what happened to him. I’d heard so many rumors, ranging from a breakdown to retirement – I just wanted to know what happened. Of course, we all had the chance to see who Roger had become once they did the reunion tour in 2003.

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I was a little surprised. I don’t know what I was expecting now that I think about it. I suppose he wasn’t nearly as shy as I’d remembered. Still every bit as handsome, though. And then there was that one time I actually spoke to him at Virgin Megastore in Hollywood. According to my oldest, I did everything but propose marriage – but she also has her mother’s gift of EXTREME EXAGGERATION. I just told him I was glad he came back, that he was always my favorite, and then I thanked him for doing the signing because I didn’t think I would have ever had the chance to meet him otherwise. He gave me a huge smile and said thank you for being so sweet, and then I floated away and couldn’t feel my body for two days.

I’ve run into him very sparingly since then, never for meaningful conversation, but I have managed to make him laugh a few times. I’m still a little intimidated by him because…well, he was the equivalent of my Prince Charming in 1980-something. The pedestal he once stood on has long since been knocked over and I’m well-aware of his humanity by now, but there’s something about running into a one-time crush that sticks with me. I think it might be my inner-teenager speaking to me!

These days, Roger is married to the devastatingly beautiful Gisela, and has a gorgeous family. He seems happier and healthier than ever, for which I am thankful. I’ve forgiven him (ha!) for carelessly tossing our Daily Duranie wristband aside all those years ago at Spy Bar. (even though we were able to get Nile and John Taylor to put it on without a problem) I get it. He couldn’t even see us, much less care about what we had thrown to him at the time. I still haven’t ever gotten his sticks at a show. There was that one time he tried to throw them my way, but…it wasn’t meant to happen.  Maybe someday the opportunity will strike, and if not, that’s OK too. I have a feeling I’ll still manage to survive.

No matter what, no one else ever seemed to quite belong behind that drum set in the way he does, and I’m hoping he sticks with it for the long haul. He’s a part of this crazy family whether he likes it or not!

Happy 58th Birthday Roger! Here is hoping for many more healthy and happy years ahead!



Happy Birthday Dom!

Sometimes my timing is impeccable!  Take this week, for instance.  Amanda and I are putting the final finishing touches on our massive writing project, and I come out of my writing cave just in time to wish   Dom a very happy birthday!!

It is easy to come up with nice things to say about Dom on any day.  It’s special to be able to say nice things on his birthday, though.  For one, the guy exudes constant energy and gives 100% during every single show I’ve ever seen. (and I’ve seen more shows with Dom than with Andy and Warren combined)  He never just “phones it in”.  Not only that—he makes it look like he’s having fun and that it’s all easy.

JoNiDo at Berkeley

I love it when he’s touring with Duran Duran.  Sometimes Dom tweets pictures from the places he’s visited, or will even mention the shows and things he’s taken in along the way.  In fact, he’s the guy who convinced me to go see Love in Las Vegas!  He was right!  He’s not the greatest at social media,  but I’m really happy we’re not just seeing #RIP tweets from him these days.  He tries.  He gets a “B” from me for effort. 😉  And sometimes, like last night as he retweeted birthday greetings from fans, he even gets an A.  (hope that retweeting finger heals soon…ha ha ha!)

I can’t say whether or not he’s patient all the time.  However, when I saw him last April and asked him for a picture, we had trouble getting our camera phone to work. Unfortunately, we ended up needing the flash. For someone who was jet-lagged and blinded by the light (get it?), he was happy to stand there with me.  Now I have have evidence of a memory that doesn’t have one or both of us with our eyes closed in the shot. 😀

Yes, I still think the band is lucky to have such a good-natured, hard-working guy playing guitar for them.  He’s a great addition to their live band—it is strange using the word “addition” after what has been 11 years or so now—but I think the fans are lucky he’s out there too.  He helps to make the shows fun, and I’m glad he’s there.

I hope he has a fantastic birthday with family at home, and my best wishes for many more.  See you in a few weeks, Dom!!

Happy Birthday!!




Happy Birthday Amanda!!

Today marks a very special holiday because it is Amanda’s birthday!!!  I am celebrating the day she was born because without her, Daily Duranie would not exist, I would not be writing as quickly as possible to finish what has essentially become a brand new manuscript, I would not have ever gone to the UK to see Duran Duran the first time…much less the second…and chances are I wouldn’t be planning to see them again this summer (and definitely not so many times!)

Dear Amanda, I’m not saying you completely corrupted me but…

You *are* the one holding the whole bottle…

Amanda does so many things for this blog that go unnoticed – she works incredibly hard to keep us on track and to make sure that SOMETHING is posted every single day, even if it’s the poll – just because she feels very strongly about this site and what we’ve built. She is an incredible partner, and gives so much of herself, I just had to take some time to say thank you.

I know that even today, as I take time to celebrate with my own birthday girl here in this house (my youngest shares Amanda’s birthday!), that Amanda will say she’s still going to write because she wants to keep the schedule. I admire her work ethic, and I also really wish she would take time for herself because I know she deserves the opportunity to sit back and recognize just how much she really does, and not for herself (I really don’t know anyone as selfless as Amanda), but for the world in general. The world is a better place because she was born, which is something we should all celebrate. 🙂

Amanda, I hope you have a fantastic birthday, my friend. I’m sorry we can’t celebrate together – even with a Vodka Friday today, but we will chat tomorrow, and the real celebration will come in July.  🙂

I do hope the band is prepared.

Happy Birthday!!!


Happy Birthday Rhonda!!

Today is a special day in Daily Duranie-land!  It is Rhonda’s birthday!!  I start looking forward to writing this blog about the same time as when I start pondering what to buy/make for her birthday!  (Fun Amanda fact–I love giving gifts!!!)  I want every birthday blog to be unique and special, including this one.  After 11 years of friendship and 5 years of doing this blog, I have learned a lot about Rhonda and about myself.  Most importantly, though, I have learned a lot about friendship!

Vodka is hobby

By now, all of you have heard about how/where Rhonda and I met.  Virtually, we met on the no longer in existence message board, duranduranfans.com.  In person, we met at the Duran Duran Fans Convention called Friends of Mine in September 2004.  Besides our mutual love in Duran Duran, we quickly discovered that we enjoyed having fun on a night out and laughing!!


From there, we discovered that we both LOVE, LOVE, LOVE talking about anything and everything Duran Duran.  In fact, when others seekindred fansm to tire of the conversation or got other interests, there we were–still talking, still thinking, still analyzing.  We understood that we truly loved the band in the same way and for the same reasons.  Kindred fans.

Then, we discovered that our similar fandom philosophies carried over into toBiloxi lineuring!  Once we toured together, we knew that we had found our touring partners for life!  It seems to me that a lot of people can be friends and be good friends, but it takes something special to be able to travel together.  The two of us have been to many places around the country and to the UK twice.  We have been on planes, trains and automobiles together.  There have been many, many, many hotel rooms throughout our friendship history.  concert ticketsTraditions have been established and we fall quickly into routines when on tour together.  It is like we were born to tour!!!  In fact, I would go so far as to say that touring is really where we are most happy.  Of course, a big part of that is seeing those litle Duran Duran concerts but it is also where our friendship comes alive and gets renewed!

Of course, we didn’t stop there with just conversations about Duran Duranbest friend or going to see the band on tour.  No…we had to do more!  So, I said, “Let’s write a book about fandom!”  Rhonda said, “Cool!  Let’s do a daily blog, too!” And this little entity was born!  This monster, this beast, this larger-than-life thing is more than just a book or a blog or a website or many social media handles or meet-ups or conventions or a message board.  It is something much much larger than the sum of its parts.  No matter how we describe it or define it, it is truly our baby.  We gave birth and have nurtured it all along the way.  It has grown and developed and we couldn’t be prouder.

crazy friendLife, though, is not always smooth or perfect.  There are bumps along the way, especially when turns are taken.  At those times, when bruises are fresh, our friendship, our bond and our fortitude has gotten stronger.  Why?  Simple.  We have each other’s back, no matter what.  I have often thought about the friendships between the guys in Duran.  They have experienced the ups and the downs of life.  Throughout it all, they have managed to be able to work together, to create together, and to be friends together.  It seems to me that this gift is really rare.  How many people can say that they can work with their best friends?  How many people can travel with their beloyal st friends?  How many people have stuck with their best friends through all that life throws at them?  I suspect the number is really pretty low.  This is why I know how special my friendship is with Rhonda and I assume that she feels the same about me.

Amanda & Rhonda Ace RooftopOn this day, the anniversary of the birth of my best friend, I find myself feeling like the person who has received a gift.  I got the best friend I could ever ask for.  She is someone who makes me laugh and laughs at my wacko sense of humor.  She is someone who shares my passion for Duran Duran and is willing to work her ass off right along side mine to show that love and devotion through everything we have created together.  I couldn’t ask for a better touring partner-in-crime as we certainly know how to have fun together and always will and, most importantly, I couldn’t ask for a more loyal friend.  She will always have my back and I will always have hers.  We will always, always be there for each other.  Truly, we share in this gift of friendship.  Durham drunk

Happy Birthday, my dear friend!  I absolutely wish that this is the best year of your life (until the next one!) and that you experience nothing but joy, laughter and fun as well as a little/lot of Duran Duran!!!  Love ya lots!!



Happy Birthday To You!

It is November 7th.  This date is a significant one.  No, Duran Duran did not start on this day.  It is not the date that Andy left or Warren.  It isn’t the date that DD14 is coming out (at least…not this year.  Ha!).  No, this date is more significant than that.  You see…it is someone’s birthday.  Someone important.  Someone very important to this blog/website.  It is, of course, Rhonda’s birthday!!!!  This year marks the 10th time I get to wish her a happy birthday.  So, what should I do this year to acknowledge the day????  Simple.  Let’s celebrate her last 10 years, at least the fun, Duranie parts!

This is the year that Rhonda helped to organize a little Duran Duran fan convention called Friends of Mine that was held in New Orleans.  While she openly discusses how this changed her life because she got to do something beyond that important role of “Mom”, I like to think that it has more to do with meeting me!  HA!  Perhaps, what was most memorable from that weekend was getting oHowl at the Moonn a stage at Howl at the Moon, a dueling piano bar and belting out “Rio” for all the world to see (and hear!  EEK!).  One might assume (correctly) that we might have exchanged in an adult beverage (or 10) in order to get up and do this.

This is the year of Astronaut and of our first tour during the Spring of 2005.  So many highlights with everything from:  Being 3rd row in front of John (okay…so that was more of my highlight but she liked Roger then so it’s cool!), getting kicked out of the hotel bar (*adjusts halo*), having Roger and Dave point at certain people wearing light up devil horns (no more halo…), not sleeping, laughing hysterically at a cafe at 5 in the morning. and having auditory hallucinations about the song “Sunrise” and so much more.  There is no wonder that we had to do more!  Where toVegas 2005 then?  Vegas!  That’s right, we went to Vegas, where we again decided we didn’t need to sleep and someone might have yelled for people to leave Roger Taylor alone!  (points to the other half of the Daily Duranie!)

This year was truly a fascinating one…as there was a tour but before that a Duranie weekend in Chicago and a tour with a prior opening band.  Oh….the things you do when you are young (and I’m talking about us notClear Static Tour those kids in Clear Static!).  MiDDwest MaDDness including some dancing at the Holiday Club, tequila shots, nicknames that aren’t too polite, and one of our catch phrases:  “It was one of those weekends” and it was!  The Clear Static Tour, on the other hand, included a road trip through Iowa of all places and my famous response to Rhonda after she wondered if we were sober enough to drive.  The answer was clearly no, so I uttered, “Drink up, babe!” as I pushed her drink towards her.  Then, the fall came along with a mini-tour.  A monumental tour.  We welcomed Dom Brown to the band in Chicago and dared to close down Bourbon Street in New Orleans.  If that wasn’t enough, we concluded that “All Things Duran Are Worth It”, except for those insane all day festivals.

The year of the fan show.  The dreaded fan show.  The worst Duran Duran gig ever.  We survived it and got stronger because of it.  Besides, we met some cool pRhonda fan showeople and had fun, including doing some tourist things, dancing the night away at the Pyramid Club with other Duranies, walking around Central Park and more.  Nonetheless, we knew that we would be in for a bumpy ride…

The Red Carpet Massacre era.  It might not have been the most peaceful or the most fun, but it was probably the most inspirational as a certain idea for a certain book got planted in some heads while sitting in traffic multiple times on the East Coast.  WEast Coast Toure also danced to Roger’s DJ Set in Atlantic City and decided not to stay in a city for longer than 24 hours.  “Check out those weapons, sistah”…indeed.

Summer mini-tour in Vegas and in Orange County, California.  THE key highlight of the whole tour was Simon’s dance during Skin Trade.  Truly, that was worth the price of admission and the cost of my flight!  Rhonda’s daughter also survived her first Duran show (5th row—not bad!!!) whereas Rhonda’s husband enjoyed his view all the way….in the back while we were up front.  Good times.

No Duran shows?!  Whatever are we going to do?  How will we survive it?!  Well, a girls weekend might help and it did…right about then is when dear Rhonda says…”On top of writing our book, let’s do a blog.  We will do it each and every day.  We will call it the Daily Duranie.  It will be SO cool!”  What the hell she was thinking, we will never know.  More importantly, what the hell I was thinking when I said yes?!?
possible Daily Duranie header

How in the world do I begin to summarize the year 2011?  All You Need Is Now.  A show in Chicago.  Two UK trips.  A humble Simon.  Scary moments followed by the trip of a lifetime.  Seeing the band play in Birmingham.  LBirminghamiving through the joy of Secret Oktober in Brighton and laughter of Leopard in Bournemouth to end in a very cold Glasgow to one of the best shows ever.  Amazing doesn’t even cut it.  The tour of a lifetime.

Anyone up for a ridiculously long road trip?!  Yeah, let’s drive from New Orleans to Biloxi to Atlanta to Raleigh to Durham to Portsmouth back to Raleigh.  Awesome.  Front row failure in Biloxi (we will do better next time, I promise!), amazing shBiloxi lineow in Durham, guitar picks, handshakes, and meet ups.  Double vodka tonics in order to drink all the vodka in the city.  Truly, it feels like a lifetime ago!

Again, we find ourselves without shows so what do we do?  That’s right.  We plan a convention.  Durandemonium.  It wasn’t easy but it was a success.  People had a good time.  Connections were made.  Duranie spirit was reinforced.  Plus, we got to drink some vodka!  Oh yeah, we also drank some vodka at Roger’s DJ Set in the spring, too!

The presvodkaent.  Finished draft of the book.  Continued onward towards goals…slowly but surely.  Always with vodka in hand.

So, Rhonda, I wish you the very happiest of birthdays!  May the next year bring you so much joy that you can’t stand it and lots of touring for us!!!  Cheers!


Today in Duran History – Happy Birthday Amanda!!

On this day in (a year I won’t mention today)…Amanda Pustz of Daily Duranie was born.  😀  Happy Birthday Amanda!!!

Let’s take a look at some special Amanda/Rhonda memories over the years, shall we?  In September of this year, I will mark 10 years as having known Amanda. Prior to our meeting in person at a DD fan convention, I did run into her posts from time to time on the DDF message board – but it was only after we met that I think she became more involved on the message boards and online communities for Duran Duran.  One might say that I was a bad influence.  However, I present the following as evidence in the contrary:




Quick question: which one of us is holding the vodka bottle?

I thought so.



But…rather than embarrass Amanda (primarily because she will get me back in spades…and who really wants that?!?), I decided to pick out a few of my better memories with a few stories that go along with them:  (They aren’t in order. I’m not the organized one out of the two of us…)


This is on Bourbon street in New Orleans. The date is right, so we were there for the Voodoo Festival Let’s see if anyone can guess what we’re yelling. (I’ll never tell…)


Below is from the same weekend. Club Ampersand – where a fan get together had been planned by DDM.  It was a fascinating beginning to the weekend, I must say.








We made it to the star in LA and took photos. This isn’t just about it being Duran Duran, this is a memory that (for me) showcases how long we’ve worked together on our manuscript, this blog…and bigger dreams.






Naturally, I can’t ever forget the trips we made to the UK. Who ever thought we’d go?? Twice?? In a single year?? Thankfully, I have a fantastic traveling partner.


Success!!! This is a photo of us in Brighton Centre – I won’t ever forget that night, and I’m sure Amanda won’t either.




And then there’s the night we finally found ourselves in front row!!




And lastly (for now), there’s Durandemonium. There is no way I would have ever attempted such a thing without her – and I can really say that had she not been there pulling me along – it likely wouldn’t have ever happened.  And now we’re planning another!








We try to remind everyone that while the music is what brought us here, it really is the friendships that keep us coming back for more. Maybe I’m just a big sap, but as I was driving home in particularly nasty traffic last Friday afternoon, it occurred to me that if the band REALLY needs motivation to continue, or inspiration to write – they really need not look further than the real friendships that they, in an indirect sort of way, have helped to create.

Amanda, I hope you have a wonderful birthday – and next year, I hope we’re celebrating the release of some really fantastic music to add to the soundtrack of our friendship at the same time we’re celebrating your birthday!!!