Tag Archives: In the Pleasure Groove

Books Never Read Better

The title is my weird attempt to switch up one of John Taylor’s frequent phrases in his autobiography.  If you have read the book, you know that he wrote the phrase, “Music never sounded better,” a lot.  I twisted around for the title of this blog.  Needless to say, I’m not feeling particularly clever or witty right now.  No, I’m feeling pretty desperate for the weekend.  The third week of school is always busy, overwhelming, stressful, or whatever appropriate adjective could fit there.  The ten to twelve hour days are sucking the life out of me, which is why the lame title.

Instead of thinking about the upsetting world events (or American politics–same difference) or the mountain of grading I have, I want to think back to this time in 2012.  Five years ago this month, John Taylor’s autobiography was released and he was traveling around the UK and later the US to do various book talks and signings.  I have fond memories of that time period.  First, I was so super excited to read the book that I downloaded it from Amazon UK because I couldn’t wait for the US release.  I even ordered a British copy as well as buying for American copies as well.  Once downloaded, I cleared my schedule, laid on my couch and read until my battery ran out.  I think I read the book in like a day, which is not my style at all.  I’m usually too impatient to continue to read that much despite my love of reading.

Then, in October of 2012, I attended one of those book signings and talks in Chicago even though I had no business attending.  In October of 2012, I was working about 80 hours a week.  I was teaching full time and I was campaigning full time, too.  My level of exhaustion was so strong that I barely made it to election day without literally collapsing.  Yet, I couldn’t miss this chance to see John read his book in person or to have him sign my copy (and one for Rhonda!).  Thus, I drove down to Chicago, about 2.5 hours, attended the event and drove back, knowing that I had to be at work the next day.

Like reading the book, I have distinct memories of that event.  For example, I remember being in line, chatting with friends and fielding constant campaign calls.  I wanted to just focus on John Taylor that night but couldn’t.  Honestly, I feel like that is the story of my life.  When I’m at work, I sometimes want to focus on fandom and what’s the latest tweet or post from the band.  Sometimes, I’m able to squeeze in a glance or two.  Likewise, when I’m at home or campaigning, other aspects of my life demand my attention.  It is rare that I just focus on one role I have in life.  I feel like I have to multi-task all the time.  I not really a fan of that.

What is interesting, though, is that when I think about reading John’s book, I don’t remember being districted or interrupting (other than the battery drain).  No, I was able to be laser focused and I liked that.  Of course, the book had a fascinating focus that led to a little book club on here as I reread and led discussion on it.

Anyway, I wouldn’t mind another book by John Taylor or about John Taylor to totally distract me from real life.  I think I could use it and it would give me an excuse to just say, “to hell with,” my grading or my household tasks or whatever else I need to do.

-A

London Bass Guitar Show 2014

Remember way back when it seemed like every day was filled with something “Duran” to write about??

Ok, maybe that’s just me.

In 2014 though, John was still out and about on occasion to talk about his autobiography, In the Pleasure Groove: Love, Death and Duran Duran. If you haven’t picked it up yet – you really should, and since I’m giving him a plug, I’d go for the audiobook.  He reads it.  Who wouldn’t want John Taylor reading to them???

I digress.

On this date in 2014, John Taylor found himself at the London Bass Show. If I remember correctly, there were a few Duranies there, and I seem to recall that John explained to them that the new album (Paper Gods) wasn’t finished yet, and that it would be quite some time before they’d be back touring again.

Admittedly, that was not easy news to hear, and we (Daily Duranie) were less than enthused.  That said, we survived.

Barely.

In any case, do you remember the London Bass Show?  Share your memories in the comments or on Facebook or Twitter, and have a great weekend, because today is my “Friday”!

-R

Happy Birthday John Taylor!!!

I never know quite where to start when I sit down to do a birthday blog!  After all, I usually have a lot to say and want to have the post be an extra special one.  This one feels even more that way.  Most importantly, it is a blog post dedicated to John Taylor.  While I know that I might not shout it from the rooftops that often or squee much over posted pictures, he is my absolute FAVORITE and has been since I was 8 years old.  Eight.  As a kid, I liked that he was “cute” and had great hair (who didn’t love the John Taylor of 1984 with the blonde bangs?!?).  Now, as an adult, I feel like I appreciate him in a much more in-depth way.  It isn’t that I don’t find him attractive or don’t like looking at picture of him.  That isn’t it as I totally do.  (Seriously?!?  Who doesn’t?!?  It is just a given, right?!)  No, it is more about how much I appreciate all that he has given and continues to give all of the rest of us.  Heck, this year for his birthday, he gave US all new Duran Duran music.  (In case you haven’t heard the song, Pressure Off, click here to hear it on YouTube.)  He has given the world so much that I always have a hard time capturing it all in a simple blog post.

First, he has given us plenty of music.  Most significantly for the authors of the blog and the readers of it, he has given us tremendous bass playing in Duran Duran.  Could you pick a favorite or ten?  An obvious example is the bass in Rio.  Here is a clip with the bass isolated from the rest:

Here is a clip of John talking about playing bass on Planet Earth in 1983:

Of course, John didn’t just play with Duran Duran, but he also played on the side projects of Power Station and Neurotic Outsiders.

Power Station–John with Bernard Edwards

Neurotic Outsiders–live clip of Planet Earth

As many also know, John made a lot of music on his own as well!

Immortal:

Beyond music, he has done quite a lot!  Clearly, he is a man of many talents!

Actor–

Author–

Activist–

Looking at the videos I have chosen to share here, I can understand why I am a fan and why everyone should be a fan.  Luckily for me, I have also had the opportunity to have a few decent moments with the man despite me still reacting like a school girl with her big crush. (If you need a reminder of my inability to deal around John Taylor, I recommend reading this blog here, which captured how badly I handled front row.  I’m all ready trying to get myself prepared for the front row experience at the Agua Caliente casino in October.  Pathetic.)

What were some of those moments, you ask?  Well, the first real interaction with John (if you can call it that since the interaction was so brief) was in the summer of 2005 when I saw John outside of his hotel in St. Louis.  My mission there was to ask for an autograph.  I approached him, asked politely and he agreed.  That’s it.  Simple.  Respectful but more than enough to keep me on a high for the next few years!  Then, in 2007, I got to speak briefly at the Red Carpet Massacre CD signing in Chicago.  I asked him about his socks.  Why?  If any of you were around in 2006, the people posting in the Church of the Bass God thread on DuranDuranMusic decided to send him socks for his birthday.  After he received them, he took pictures with some that he liked, including the pair I sent, which were James Bond socks as seen below:

Bond socks

The next big moment came in 2012 when he came to Chicago for a book reading and signing.  Not only was he super generous in signing a book for me and for my partner-in-crime, but he accepted a Daily Duranie wristband and put it on!

John Wristband

Of course, like everyone else who attended the signing, I was able to get a picture of him signing my book(s).  Yet, I wasn’t satisfied.  It is silly of me, I know, but I still really wanted a picture of me with John.  Finally, this past spring, when Duran Duran played at the David Lynch Foundation Show, I was able to get my picture.

John and Amanda

In keeping with the story of my life, he looks great and I’m out-of-focus and have my eyes closed.  Awesome.  I guess this just means that I’ll have to try and get a better one, right?  At least, this is what I tell myself.

At the end of the day, I still feel like the lucky one.  It isn’t because of those moments (although they were fabulous) or those pictures.  No, I still feel like the lucky one to have been around at the right time, right place in order to discover John Taylor and become his fan.  His birth, truly, was a gift to all of us.

On that note, I wish John Taylor the very happiest of birthdays!

-A

Duran Duran History – London Bass Show

Duran Duran history for March 2nd: in 2014, John Taylor appeared at the London Bass show in support of his autobiography, In the Pleasure Groove: Love, Death and Duran Duran. He spoke about his career, his book, and also played his signature Peavey Bass.

We know there were more than a few Duranies in attendance, share your photos and experiences!!  -R

 

Duran Duran History – John Taylor Signing

Today’s Duran Duran history takes us back to 2012 when John Taylor had a book signing event at Waterstones in Brighton, England.  Obviously, this was a promotional event for his autobiography, In the Pleasure Groove.  As someone who was lucky enough to go to one of these book signings, they were a real treat.  While I thought it was cool enough to hear John read from his book on the audio version of it, it was super cool to see/hear him read it in person.

If you haven’t read the book, I cannot recommend it enough.  Then, dive into our blog posts about it.  The first one is here.

While I couldn’t find a video clip of him reading in Brighton, I did find one from Bath:

-A

Today in Duran History – John Book Signing in L.A.

On this date in 2012, John Taylor did a book signing at Book Soup in Los Angeles for his autobiography, In the Pleasure Groove:  Love, Death and Duran Duran.  

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I cannot believe that this book came out two years ago now!  I feel like it was just released.  Anyway, did any of you attend this particular book signing?  I was lucky enough to attend the one in Chicago that took place about a week or so after this one.  If you want to read about my experience, I wrote about it here.  (By the way, take a look at what Mr. Taylor is wearing in the picture!)

-A

Today in Duran History – In the Pleasure Groove

On today’s date in 2012, John Taylor released his autobiography.  Maybe you’ve heard of it???  😀

That’s right – just two years ago In the Pleasure Groove: Love, Death and Duran Duran  was released. We were giddy with the excitement, sharing pictures and stories from the many book talks and signings with John…and some of us may have actually read the book. (4 times including the two times I listened to the entire thing in the car…but who is really counting?!?)

For the record: I still believe it’s a must-read for all Duran fans.  I wonder if the rest of them will ever write one……

-R

Today in Duran History – Birmingham Conservatoire

On today’s date in 2012, Duran Duran’s John Taylor appeared at the Birmingham Conservatoire in support of his autobiography In the Pleasure Groove: Love, Death and Duran Duran.  He gave a talk on the book itself and then signed copies for those in attendance.

I am almost positive many of our readers were there – if so, post a picture of you with your book!

-R