Tag Archives: reunion

Niavete falls from our eyes

Prospective is an amazing, wondrous thing. Sometimes, a little time and distance shines just the right kind of light on things. Today, I drove my oldest – Heather – to the airport. She flew out to see my sister for about a week. I remember the last time Heather flew anywhere alone. It was also to go see my sister, and it was the first time she’d ever gone anywhere alone. I was a nervous wreck that day. Heather has changed a lot in the past several years. She’s dangerously close to turning 21. “It’s twenty days away, Mom…but who is counting?”  She is a junior in college, lives pretty much on her own, and is anxious to discover where she’s going after she graduates. When I think back on that first trip on her own now, I realize that she really was young then, but she still managed. I can remember her excitement about being with my sister, away from home, and feeling just a little more grown up when she got home. This time, she’s looking for the place she’s going to live after college. She’s wondering what is going to come next. She’s excited, but in a very different way this time. She knows what Chicago is like (Although I cannot wait to hear about how freaking cold my California kid thinks it is when she gets there!), and her entire perspective might change a bit.

As I drove home from the airport, thinking about all of that, I did something I haven’t done in probably eight or nine years. I put in the CD from the very first time the reunited Duran Duran played at the Pacific Amphitheater in Costa Mesa. The year was of course 2003, and I was in the audience. It was not only the first time they played the Pacific Amphitheater, it was also the first time I ever saw all five original members.

The first thought that went through my head as I listened was that I wish I could bottle up the enthusiasm of the crowd from that night. The roar of fans up on their feet, cheering their hearts out for this band that most, if not everyone in the audience that night, grew up listening to, was like a tidal wave of sound. There was no way not to get caught up in it, and I did as I listened and relived that night.

So much has changed for me since that night. If memory serves, I was in the 16th row. I can remember that (oddly) because I stood there before the show began, watching all of the people in front of me as they would rush up to other fans, hugging, laughing, and yes, even some were crying and cheering as they bounced in the revelry. There was so much excitement and pure joy in the air, and yet I didn’t know a single soul in the amphitheater besides my husband. I wanted to know how they all knew one another, and most of all, I wanted in. I wanted to be a part of whatever group that was. Even though I had already found duranduran.com by then, I wasn’t a vocal member of the message board community. No one knew me, and I hadn’t quite found my place yet.

I thought about how excited I was to see Andy on stage that night. I haven’t allowed myself to even really think about his absence in the years since. I listened to his guitar as the sound washed over me in the car. All I can really say is that there was something certainly very special about the fab five. It was like this shining, perfect, moment that wasn’t ever really meant to last. I’d forgotten how differently he plays, the solo in White Lines coming to mind, but even Hungry Like the Wolf has a different feel in parts. It isn’t necessarily better, just different, and I’d forgotten.

Then there were the songs that we don’t hear much anymore. Friends of Mine, Nightboat, New Religion, What Happens Tomorrow, Virus… I know the band likes the backbone of their set list the way it is, but to hear some of those songs again just made me sit back and really listen. The way the crowd responded to every song blew me away, and yet I was a part of that audience.

In a lot of ways, I wish it could all be like it was then. I screamed and cheered no matter what they played because at the time, everything I heard was brand new, as though I’d never heard it live before.  I can remember feeling out of breath after every single song because I danced like crazy. I jumped, I screamed, I nearly felt faint, and when the concert was over, I felt completely spent. I have seen Duran Duran about fifty times since that fateful show in 2003. Sometimes, even I want to slap myself when I think about that. But, the one thing that hasn’t changed is my love for this band, and even the community that surrounds it.

I am so grateful, and moreover, my heart feels gratitude that I’ve experienced 95% of it as an adult. Sure, I was a petulant ten or eleven year old when I discovered the band. My walls were painted in a beautiful coat of Duran Duran posters and pinups, and I bled Seven and the Ragged Tiger just like most of the rest of you reading. But, it wasn’t until adulthood that I really began traveling, seeing the band, meeting friends, and of course—starting Daily Duranie. I wouldn’t want it any other way.  Sometimes though, I do have moments where I wish I could go back to the beginning, forgetting what I’ve seen and what I know.  Instead,  draping myself with the innocent infatuation I once felt for them,  and allowing the music to fully wash over and consume me.  I want to feel that same wild abandon I once had, not a care in the world beyond that very note or measure.  Listening to this Encore CD in the car reminded me of both how wonderful, and how lonely that time was for me. I still wouldn’t want to go back.




Sets You on a Path: The Reunion

Today is easily one of my favorite dates to celebrate. On August 29th of the year 2000, Simon and Nick visited John at his house in Los Angeles.

What could they possibly have talked about?

Getting the band back together!! The reunion they said would never happen….

That’s right. It all began with a chat around the pool. (well, that’s how I picture it in my head, anyway) And if it weren’t for that day, and the reunion that followed, seventeen years ago now, none of this – the albums, the touring, the message boards, DDM, Astronaut, Red Carpet Massacre, All You Need is Now, Paper Gods…and this blog….probably would not have happened.

I just don’t know if I would have kept going to shows. Maybe I would have for a while, but life gets in the way. I know how I am with other bands. If it’s not “easy”, I don’t bother. Would that have become the way with Duran Duran? Probably. After all, I hadn’t gone to very many shows before the reunion, although it was one of their gigs at the House of Blues in Anaheim that really got me back into the band, and that was before the reunion was announced. Even so, I’m not sure that I would have been inspired to keep reading message boards or meet people had the reunion not been announced. I don’t know that I would have gotten involved with planning a convention, or that I’d have ever met Amanda as a result.

It’s wild to consider that just one conversation at someone’s house changed everything. But it did.  And while the reunion may have been one fleeting moment in my life, I’m grateful. And happier. I found a part of myself I’d been missing. That “something” wasn’t really Duran Duran. They were just the catalyst to get me looking for it, and I’m thankful. I really am.

This silly band. They don’t know me much beyond the words I write here and my face in their audience. Yet, in some odd way, I will always feel as though my life is weirdly entwined with their professional one. One day in August of 2000 set me on a path, and while yes I’m nearly quoting “What are the Chances”….it is incredibly fitting.

So while I head off to work today – I’ll be thinking about that band a little. It’s a good day.


The Distance Between Us – Techno For Two released, 2001

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

This feels like a John Taylor sort of day to me. This is appropriate because on this date in 2001, Techno for Two was released in Japan.

Now, maybe some of you are now squinty-eyed and wondering “What in the hell is that about?” Fair enough.

This is the fourth solo album released by Mr. Taylor, and in my little opinion – it’s his best. It includes “Mister J”, “Mansman”, “Tight”, “Immortal”, and my personal favorite, “6000 Miles”.  The album feels very introspective to me, and I guess I must like that about John’s writing.

I like a lot of John’s solo efforts, but this album is indeed my favorite. One of my favorite memories is traveling by train in England, looking out at the gorgeous countryside while “6000 Miles” played in my ears.  (Not the Ventura Mix..the original ballad) The timing couldn’t have been better, and now I can’t think of that trip without hearing that song in my head. Funny how music works.

What is even more fascinating to me is that at the time this came out, Duran Duran was in the progress of putting the original line-up back together again. In hindsight, I think I can see the beginnings of that through this album and the way it was written. Trust the Process, indeed.  Everything happens for a reason, and I don’t think I’m entirely out of line by believing that John needed that solo time to get to the place he currently resides today.

It’s also a little hard, in some ways, to believe that this album is now sixteen years old. So, while I’m in a quiet, reflective sort of mood today – I’m going to give Techno for Two a listen. If you don’t have a copy of the album, you can find a lot, if not all, of the songs on YouTube.


Do you remember the website for Something You Should Know?

During the frenzy of 2005, something else was going on besides just Astronaut tour dates. Something You Should Know was coming our way.

A director saw a story that needed to be told, and had spent time going around the country interviewing fans for a documentary named Something You Should Know.  M. Douglas wanted to tell the story of Duranies, explain why we were fans, and what kinds of things we would do to express our fandom. Many of my friends were among those he had interviewed for this documentary, and they were excited to know that at some point in the future, their tales might have ended up on a big screen.

The timing could not have been more perfect for such a venture. After a long hibernation for many, the re-emergence of the Fab Five with the Astronaut album provided just the enticement to come out of the shadows.  It seemed like I was running into fans nearly everywhere I went, and it made the journey that much more exciting. Like many of you, I sat waiting for the announcement that he documentary would be released. On this date in 2005, the website for Something You Should Know was launched.

While the documentary itself did not turn out quite as I had imagined – the storyline seeming to sensationalize the “slightly bizarre” behavior of fans rather than tell more of an honest story, I can remember being very excited to hear that someone even thought there was a point to fandom at all.  The irony (for me), is that now having been rejected a few times for trying to tell the honest story of fandom – I can see why it was easier to sell the sensationalized stories. I could easily step up on my soapbox and lecture why this is so wrong, but I’ll refrain.

You’re welcome. Happy Valentines Day!

This is one of those times where, as I’m writing, I’m thinking about how this feels like this happened so long ago.  A LOT of life has gone on since the website for Something You Should Know was launched. Even so, I remember…do you?



Do you remember Greatest? It went platinum in 2005!

Finally, a date in history that I clearly remember!

Wait…I’m not sure if that’s a good thing, or a bad thing in this case.

Was 2005 really that long ago? Twelve years flew by in a blink!  On this date in 2005, Greatest went platinum. (Actually, it’s gone triple platinum now)

I didn’t buy Greatest when it first came out, in 1999.  It was only available on VHS at that time, and the track listing was a bit different. I was in the midst of mommyhood then, and while I seem to remember seeing the VHS tape in the store, I know I felt that I already had those videos on my VHS copy of their video album from the 80s.  Here is that track listing for those of you who might want to know:

  1. “Planet Earth”
  2. “Girls on Film” (Uncensored)
  3. “The Chauffeur” (Uncensored)
  4. “Hungry Like the Wolf”
  5. “Save a Prayer”
  6. “Rio”
  7. “Is There Something I Should Know?”
  8. “Union of the Snake”
  9. “New Moon on Monday”
  10. “The Reflex”
  11. “The Wild Boys” (extended version)
  12. “A View to a Kill”
  13. “Notorious”
  14. “Skin Trade”
  15. “I Don’t Want Your Love”
  16. “All She Wants Is”
  17. “Serious”
  18. “Burning the Ground”
  19. “Ordinary World”
  20. “Come Undone”
  21. “Electric Barbarella”
  22. “My Own Way”
  23. The Wedding Album EPK

Then, in November 2003, they reissued Greatest, but this time, it was on DVD.  First of all, can I just comment on how genius was it to reissue Greatest right at that time?  The band had reunited, done quite a few shows that summer, and then this compilation DVD is re-released. If you were a big fan you wanted it, and if you were someone who went to go see their shows but had forgotten their music, you wanted it so that you could be reminded.  It was like the “catch me up” album to have, and having a DVD full of videos to go with it wasn’t bad either.  It was only then that I started hearing about easter eggs.


Yeah, I was pretty in the dark about the whole technology thing back then, despite being married to someone in the industry.  I quickly learned that easter eggs were hidden treats (well, they were treats for us, weren’t they?!?) that one could find by clicking on the title, or playing the videos in a certain order. This was fascinating! I spent an incredible amount of time trying to figure out how to see this video or that video. In fact, it was over a year later when I was headed off for my very first fan convention, and we were still talking about all of the easter eggs! Eventually, I did find them all – with help – but the DVD was actually the first place I saw the entire 17-minute version of New Moon On Monday since the 1980s. Yes, the easter eggs were a pain until you either figured out how to get to them, or, like me – had some kind soul send a directional map! (I was never very successful at easter egg hunts!)   I thought about including a full track listing including hidden tracks here, but what I found was way too long and complicated. Google it!

I have to say, out of all of the things the band has done with video – and this is just my opinion –  I appreciate the easter eggs on the Greatest DVD most. It was genius, and while yes, many of the eggs stumped me, it was fun, and it got the fans talking. A LOT!  While doing some reading before writing this post today, plenty of online places say the DVD was criticized for the easter eggs. I can understand, because yes – every DVD player works differently, and it was confusing in parts. Even with all of that, I still had fun with it, and it was a joy to see EPKs and versions of videos (however the smallest of differences) that I hadn’t ever seen or noticed before. Personally, I think people just like to complain.

Hmm…might actually BE something to that easter egg thing, should they maybe want to re-release anything like an anthology or something for the 40th anniversary coming up in 2018…not that I’m counting or suggesting anything….just saying….

So while this date in history commemorates the Greatest album going platinum – and I don’t know how many of you keep track, but there are STILL weeks that go by where Greatest tops the charts in various countries – I can’t help but remember the DVD as well. It was something that brought me up to date (both with technology as well as with things the band did while I was busy getting married, moving across the country and having kids!).

Hmm, they’re forecasting a lot of rain this weekend where I live (which means we should probably build an ark!), I might just drag this out and have a Duran viewing party!

Do you still have your Greatest CD/DVD/etc??