Tag Archives: Martha Quinn

Kennedy Space Center PRomotion

I am not heading to Florida this week. There is a part of me that really wishes that I would be. I recognize, though, that I cannot do everything and be everywhere. Yet, I do have Vegas coming up and a family vacation in a few weeks. That said, I am completely excited for those who are going and feeling nothing but pride for the band to be given the honor to play at the Kennedy Space Center for Apollo’s 50th Anniversary. On top of all of that, I love all the publicity that Duran has been getting. Let’s share some of what I have seen and heard, shall we? (I’m not sharing the CNN interview because Rhonda had a blog about that one last week.)

I think what I have been most excited to see are the videos about the individual band member’s memories about the moon landing. As someone who was not on the planet then, I love hearing other people share stories about historical events that they witnessed. My parents, for example, told me that they were at my uncle and aunt’s house that day to play cards but that they all stopped when the news came through. So, what did Roger, Nick, John and Simon share? Let’s see!

I love that Roger mentions about how he already knew that he was going to be a musician but the idea of an astronaut couldn’t help but come into his consciousness then. I bet that a lot of kids started to think about this as a career choice after seeing this footage and the hero’s welcome the astronauts received.

It is interesting to me that John mentioned how school felt like it was in slow motion that day. I can remember later space flights in which my teachers in elementary school put on the radio for us to listen to the lift-off. Of course, I also can distinctly recall sitting in my classroom in 1986 when the Challenger exploded with what probably was the exact opposite feeling to the one in 1969.

Nick’s story about keeping the Sunday Times Magazine about this historical event reminds me of a quote that I have in my classroom. It says something about how you never know that you are living in history while it is happening. On that day of the moon landing, I’m pretty certain that the whole world knew that history was happening. Nick clearly did.

I love the fact that Roger’s parents woke him up to see the moon landing. Those are parents that I can appreciate!

Leave it to Simon to get philosophical at the end. I agree with him, though, it must be hard to have one’s life to be defined by one event. It could be magical but also limiting.

Besides these video clips, the band has been busy promoting the event through talking to various media. Tomorrow, for example, Simon will be on Sirius XM Volume in the morning to talk about it. He was also on iHeart radio with Martha Quinn this weekend, which you can hear here! While Martha tried to get setlist intel out of him, he instead focused on the drones that will be up in the air during their set.

Did I miss any other press? If so, let me know and I would be happy to edit this post to include it. Excited to cheer Duran from a distance this week while I listen to all the space related songs of theirs.

-A

Happy 37th Anniversary MTV!

Can you believe that MTV launched on this date in 1981—a mere 37 years ago???

I kept going back and redoing the math on that, because it just doesn’t seem possible. I can’t remember exactly when MTV arrived at my house. I know we had cable at some point, and I remember watching MTV for hours and hours. I just don’t know when we finally got it, although I’m sure it was before Live Aid in 1985.  What I do remember is that my friend Marsha had it as soon as it became available to residents in Covina, California.  I began spending many hours of my day planted in front of her TV as a result. (Thanks Mrs. W!!)

My musical tastes were formed by two things: playing clarinet, and MTV.  As a clarinet student, I learned far more about classical music than I ever thought possible. In the years before MTV, I knew more about classical composers than I did contemporary 1980’s-era artists on the radio. By then, I’d cultivated a deep appreciation for  Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, and Mozart, along with many others. That list is long, my friends. Benny Goodman was and still is my hero and spirit animal, right alongside Pete Fountain and Artie Shaw.  On the other hand, I really didn’t know much about pop music. I discovered a local radio station – KROQ – before MTV came along, but once the videos got started, there was no stopping me. I relished every single video that came on the screen, along with juicy bits of music news and background information that VJ’s such as Martha Quinn and JJ Jackson diligently doled out in between.

I cut my New Wave and Alternative teeth on artists like Wall of Voodoo, Burning Sensations, The Motels, The Fixx, Visage, Soft Cell, Joy Division—I could go on and on and on, and you’d likely know every band and artist.

It blows my mind that this all began 37 years ago. Can it really be possible? Sadly, I know it is. Life goes by in the blink of an eye.

I wouldn’t mind sitting down in front of the TV to watch an MTV video marathon direct from 1981, even if only for a day. It is a shame we can’t step back in time, for even just one moment. The innocence of youth, hope for what the future might hold, and seemingly limitless energy all seem very appealing right now.

Yep, I’d take a little more of all that today.

-R

It was 30 years ago today…

All morning I’ve seen tweets and Facebook messages referring to Live Aid because today is the thirtieth anniversary. Thirty YEARS ago. Is that even possible??

I suppose in some ways, yes, it does feel like it’s been thirty years. It really kind of feels like a lifetime ago in some respects. The year was 1985. It was the summer between my freshman and sophomore years of high school. I spent the day running between the backyard of my home, where I was trying to perfect my tan (back then, I didn’t think twice about skin cancer) and my living room, where I had the TV turned up loud enough so I could hear who was playing.  I didn’t want to miss Duran Duran.

Historically, there had never been a show like it. Live Aid was about something much bigger than the music. I don’t believe there has been a show like it since. Whether it’s chalked up to the music of the time, the world, or just that particular generation, Live Aid was a once-in-a-lifetime kind of gig. For the lion’s share, most bands look back on Live Aid as this sort of strange, surreal experience; but many also seem to have found a sense of pride in having been a part of something so beyond themselves. I don’t get the sense that it was an experience that any of them were able to fully appreciate at the time, with comments regarding firm set-limits to testimonials describing the glitterati-enlaced talent waiting and mingling backstage. Even as a fan, to read oral-histories such as the one Lyndsey Parker penned for Yahoo! Music can feel a bit surreal.

For me, Live Aid represents an end to my glory days as an 80s music loving teen. Music was forever changed. Duran Duran didn’t play another show as the Fab Five until 2003. Like John Taylor, I rather miss the days where music was about living life to excess: hedonism and narcissistic as it may have been. After Live Aid, it stopped being about having fun for the sake of having fun. All of the sudden it became about “the greater good” to a large extent. While I am not one to mock the trials and tribulations of the world…there is something to be said for escapism. That’s probably why to this day I still look to Duran Duran for my escape and fun.

And Martha (Quinn)? Believe me, we ALL heard that bum note. For the Duranies out there, it was the final punctuation mark on a remarkable moment in our lives. Of course we forgave Simon, and at the time I don’t think many of us realized the eventual significance of the moment..but it stood as that final capstone for so many years, it is difficult not to equate one with the other. I don’t think the band has necessarily perpetuated the memory of that note as much as it’s been in the lore and/or canon of this fandom ever sense. That note came to be known as marking an end, and a new beginning.

-R