Tag Archives: The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas

What a Difference a Week Could Make

Last Sunday was Mother’s Day and I spent a good part of it with my parents and my niece. We went out to eat and played some games. Sounds nice, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, I was distracted and frustrated for much of it. Earlier that morning, I received a little email from DuranDuranMusic informing me that Duran Duran has added five shows in September on the West Coast. I read the email and chose not to react…much. After all the timing of these shows is the worst ever. All I did was simply forward it on to Rhonda. I offered her little commentary but part of me hoped that she and our friends would reject these dates. I didn’t want to have to make a decision about whether or not they were feasible. It felt like too much after another insane and tough weeks at work. So, after I forwarded the email, I put the idea aside and went on with my plans.

About 45 minutes into our drive, my phone started to go a little crazy, indicating lots of notifications. At first, I thought it was my niece alerting us to some change in plans but then I realized that it was time for the West Coast to start waking up. Of course, my friends saw the news and were reacting. Not knowing what the initial thoughts were as I couldn’t check my phone as the driver, caused me to stew. What if they want to go? What if they can? Could I make it work at all? What are the rules at work about September time off? Then, I just started getting frustrated. Why couldn’t the band come to the Midwest? If they were playing near me, so much more would be possible and easier. Why do I always have to fly? Why is it always the West Coast? What is that about? Yes, yes, I know it about the money. They must get paid a good amount to play there, I thought to myself. I even recognized that if I am frustrated, imagine what the rest of the country and world feels. They haven’t gotten shows in years! Then, I started to get mad at myself for getting mad. Needless to say, those fifteen minutes of driving were torture and the more time I had the more irritated I became. Sometimes, I am so stupid. Yet, I could not help how I felt.

Finally, the car stopped and I was able to check my messages. Shit. They all wanted to go and could. Of course, they did and could. They have normal jobs–not like mine with all of the dumb rules and regulations. Notice how my frustration moved from the band to the job. Part of me was even mad at my friends, which is the dumbest thing ever. Then, as soon as I thought that, I realized that I didn’t even know why I was mad at them. Of course, they could and should go to as many shows as possible. Why would I stop them from having a good time? No, it has way more to do with how *I* wanted to go but didn’t think I could. I was angry at the situation more than anything else. I wasn’t really mad at my friends, at the band, or even really at work.

As I sat down at restaurant and began to message my friends back, I started to calm down. Maybe I could make something work? I began checking my employee handbook. I started searching for flights in general. I figured that at least I wouldn’t just dismiss the shows outright and that would make me feel better. By the time, my parents and I were driving back, the messages had slowed down as everyone tried to figure out what they could really do after the initial excitement. I had settled into a maybe I could go state of being. Then, on the way home, I started to talk to my parents about the possibilities. I weighed the pros and cons and sought their opinions. As normal, my parents tried not to take sides, preferring me to come to my own conclusions, which sometimes drives me crazy. After all, I can sit with indecisiveness for a long time. Usually, when that happens, it is because I feel guilty. I feel guilty for missing work so early in the year. I finally could admit that this was the underlying issue. Having recognized that, I got a little more frustrated, at both the system that creates and reinforces that, and at myself for letting myself feel that way.

As Sunday night turned to Monday, I concluded that I would ask a couple of colleagues and friends what they think I should do. They did not seem shocked or appalled that I asked the question nor did they seem to think I would be terrible for going. By the time Rhonda messaged me in the middle of the day, I knew that I could and would make Vegas work. Of course, I also wanted reassurance that people actually wanted me to go. Why did I worry about that? First, I wasn’t super awesome the day before, which I was not proud of. Second and more importantly, the last time wasn’t ideal due solely to me. Don’t get me wrong. It wasn’t like the Vegas trip in February wasn’t fun. I had a good time and the shows were great! I cannot complain there. But Rhonda tried to talk to me and I wasn’t able to articulate well what I was thinking and feeling. I’m sure that it ended up making things worse instead of better. I definitely seemed unfocused and I was to a lot of extent. It has nothing to do with the band or fandom. My head was still in campaign land. Up until that point, I had been able to turn off work when I tour but I couldn’t then. Being in charge created a different reaction in me. More significantly than all that, I was literally exhausted. Now, I know that is a word that gets thrown around often by many people but…the way I’m using it goes beyond I need some sleep. No, my exhaustion ran deep. It is the reason I was sick for over a month. Even today, I feel it as I need significant amount of time to really rest and recover. After all, working two intense full time jobs for months is bound to take its toll. That mini-tour just happened to hit at the worst point of my illness and my exhaustion.

So the more I thought about making Vegas work, the more it made sense to me. Is it the best thing to do for work? No. Do I already give a lot? Yes. More than many. More than most. I cannot feel bad about taking a day. One day. I deserve a chance for a do over, right? I think so. Then, of course, Rhonda and I managed to get tickets on Wednesday through the typical, “I hate Ticketmaster” process. I took it as another sign that it is meant to be. Finally, reading about our friend fighting in the hospital, reminded me that life is short. I’m not going to regret missing a day of work, but I might miss a chance to be in my happy place with my friends.

-A

Now I’m Lying Here Waiting: September 2019 US Shows

Here I am, I’m a dotted line

By now, you’ve likely heard that Duran Duran is coming back to the states this summer and doing additional dates surrounding the KAABOO Festival in Del Mar, California. (It’s a tiny little town just north of San Diego).

The additional shows are as follows:

September 7 & 8 at The Chelsea in the Cosmopolitan, Las Vegas, Nevada.

September 10 & 11 at Mountain Winery in Saratoga, California.

September 13 at Lake Tahoe Outdoor Arena at Harvey’s Casino, Nevada.

Cut the corner, stick me to your door

So, let’s just address the very large, pink-spotted elephant in the room and get it over with. Yes, they’re coming back to the west coast. Yep, this is the third time they’ve played Vegas, and not only Vegas but the same venue in the past 18 months. I know, I know, they’ve played America a lot lately. I am feeling like I need to apologize to the rest of the world, and yet these choices in places, dates, and venues have absolutely nothing to do with me personally. I just am a fan who can potentially reap the benefits (or deplete my bank account by purchasing tickets).

Obviously, these are business decisions. The band has mentioned before that they don’t have a lot of input with where they tour or play gigs. Somehow, I suspect that knowledge doesn’t make it any easier, and I have to respect that. I am ever hopeful that they play in other places besides Denmark, Iceland and the west coast of the US.

That said, could it be that this third set of shows at The Chelsea is Duran Duran’s version of a residency? In the past, Amanda and I have commented on the potential for Vegas residencies here on the blog. Many artists do them. Duran Duran is not one to blindly follow the current, instead – they do their own thing. Could it be that this is their idea of playing several shows in the same place without committing to the same venue and city for weeks on end? It’s not really a residency, but I have to ask – how often do you see artists playing the same venue three times over the course of a year and a half that aren’t playing residencies in some form or another? Food for thought.

I’m a man who stepped off the path

The other, slightly less obvious (?!) elephant has to do with ticket prices. I’ve seen many fans experiencing varying levels of sticker shock since yesterday. Here are the levels of VIP ticketing and pricing being offered:

There are three VIP packages available for these 5 concerts. Members can purchase a maximum of two (2) tickets per person for Las Vegas and four (4) tickets per person for Saratoga and Lake Tahoe.    

1) The Ultimate Front Row Backstage Tour VIP Package. $600 + Ticket Price:

  • 1 Front Row Ticket
  • An exclusive “behind the scenes” escorted Backstage Tour
  • Unforgettable pre-show on-stage photo opportunity 
  • A limited edition autographed Duran Duran photo
  • A custom designed logo’d tote bag
  • Commemorative VIP Tour Laminate with Lanyard
  • An exclusive to Ultimate package stylish logo’d Toiletry Bag
  • An exclusive to Ultimate package logo’d bluetooth speaker
  • Logo’d Bluetooth noise reducing rechargeable headphones
  • Logo’d stainless steel tumbler

NOTE: There is no meet and greet associated with this package. Details of the backstage tour will be emailed no later than 4 days before the show. The merchandise will be mailed.  

2) The GOLD VIP Package. $175 + Ticket Price 

  • One Premium Ticket in rows 2-8-
  • A custom designed logo’d tote bag
  • Commemorative VIP Tour Laminate with Lanyard
  • Logo’d Bluetooth noise reducing re-chargeable headphones
  • Logo’d stainless steel tumbler

There is no meet and greet, experience at the venue or parking associated with this package. Merchandise will be mailed.  

3) The BRONZE VIP package. $65 + ticket price

  • One Premium Ticket (typically in rows 9 through 20)
  • A custom designed logo’d tote bag
  • Commemorative VIP Tour Laminate with Lanyard

There is no meet and greet, experience at the venue or parking associated with this package. Merchandise will be mailed.  

We will also offer regular pre-sale tickets which you can purchase on its own (not part of any package)

The world spins so fast

I’m going to be blunt: You want to sit in the front row? You’re gonna have to pay, and pay dearly. The law of demand and supply is in effect here. It’s going to be painful, and we’re all going to hate it. However, if you want to be in the White Lines Spit Zone, or stare deeply into John’s eyes as he’s playing Come Undone or Hungry Like the Wolf, it’s going to cost you.

Me? Oh hell no! I’ll happily sit a few rows back so that I can keep paying my son’s college tuition! (it’s not any cheaper than VIP, I’ll say that much!)

I might fly off

So with that, we’re back to the pre-sale anxiety jig. Will I get tickets? Are they going to be too far back? How many shows can I feasibly get away with buying? Watching the Ticketmaster countdown clock tick down to go time… It is definitely a love/hate relationship. Are you with me?

On the other hand, seeing shows added made for a very lovely Mother’s Day. Seeing as my darling husband went to the trouble of printing out an online Mothers Day card for me while I was out at the crack of dawn feeding our chickens and cleaning their coop….I am ready to buy ALL of the Duran Duran tickets.

Well, not really all of them. After all, there’s a two-ticket limit for Vegas and a four-ticket limit for the Saratoga and Lake Tahoe shows.

Meanwhile, my mother arrives tomorrow for an extended visit, I have a house to clean, groceries to buy, a bed is being delivered, hotel and pet kennel reservations to make, and a graduation to attend this weekend. It is crazy…as usual!

-R


I Really Didn’t Sleep Last Night

Hello everyone! I am attempting to blog from the airport. I’m on my phone, and I am so tired I can’t see straight, but this is happening anyway.

Amanda is already waiting for her flight and won’t be home until late, so I offered to write today. Here’s the thing, we didn’t get back to our room until after 4am, and unfortunately we didn’t have time to even talk about the show last night. So, these are my rambling thoughts. Good luck reading!!

Before the show, we had a meet up at the CliQue Bar in the hotel. I thoroughly enjoyed sitting and talking with everyone. As much as I felt like planning a meet up would be overwhelming for me, I realized just how important they are. Those social activities are what help to keep us all connected. Yes, the shows matter. The music is paramount. It is what brought us here to begin with. I don’t know about anyone else, but the friendships I’ve made are what keep me coming back for more, even 40 years later. Maybe I’m not the only one.

The show was, of course, fantastic. Our seats were closer by a few rows last night, which made us very happy. We were even later to the show last night, a welcome thanks to everyone we saw in the main lobby of the venue. I don’t think Amanda and I minded for one minute that we were running behind because we were stopped by fellow fans wanting to say hi.

The band seemed every bit as energetic as the night before. When someone asked me later that night about which show I thought was better, it was a tough choice. They were both fantastic. I know that in some way, I needed to give a definitive answer so I replied “Last night”, to which this person – who may or may not have been one of the musicians onstage – informed me that they played better that night.

I’m gonna just agree. I mean, he’d know better than I would have from my fourth row, just a bit to the right of Simon location (that he admitted never being able to find me in!)

I did notice that Simon was in a silly sort of mood. He talked a lot, almost as though he were trying to stretch out the show to make the moment last. Personally, I thought the show length was fine, particularly since they added The Reflex to the setlist. I enjoyed Tempted much more last night, likely because I wasn’t nearly as emotional about Seventh Stranger (I had seen it the night before and ended up a sloppy, terry mess). It felt like there was more of a pause between the songs too, which also helped. Or, I wasn’t sniffling and wiping my eyes so it just felt like a longer pause!

I thought the entire band did a wonderful job. Not only were the shows great, they lit a fire in me that I haven’t felt in a long time. Standing there, cheering for some of my favorite people on the planet made me feel so alive. I needed it.

So here I sit at my gate, waiting for my plane to take me back to reality. In some ways, I really am sad. I will miss my friends, and I enjoyed not having to worry about anyone but myself for a change. I took walks with friends, spent a glorious amount of time talking with people I genuinely care about, and even managed to eat at a couple fabulous restaurants, thanks to our resident foodie-friend, Lori!

I rarely talk about things like this, but Dom and I ended up at the same place last night. It was good to see him, get a couple of bearhugs and chat. He’s a good guy…even though he seems to love to give me as hard of a time as I give right back at him. Bring it, my friend….Maybe next show, I’ll have to draw a map so you can find me. Ha!

What else? I guess this week will be about assimilating back into my normal mom role. Did I mention that I’m picking up my very first baby chicks to raise? I’m going to be a chicken-mama!! Yep, I’m going to develop my own litttle farm at our new house, so I’ve been building a chick brooder (google it if you don’t know). I’m excited. It is so not Duran, but balance is good, right?

I’m off. Thank you to Amanda, Lori and Suzie for being great friends, confidants and roomies. It was great seeing Patty and Kelly, along with an entire list of people I’m not mentioning for fear of leaving someone out. Lots of love to all of you. My life wouldn’t be the same without Duranies, that is for sure! Special thanks to Duran Duran for making me remember to stop and listen to the music. I am so grateful for you and your work.

-R

Chasing After Rainbows

Did you know there was a show last night?!?

There were DEFINITELY Duranies in the house, the two of us included! Today’s v-log covers the show, the music, the fun, and the fans! This outrageously wild weekend isn’t over yet, either. Today we are meeting at the CliQue bar (or as our naughty roommates call it – the Clitoris bar!!) today at 5pm for an OFFICIAL DAILY DURANIE MEET UP! See you there!!

Another crazy and slightly silly Daily Duranie show review!!

See you tonight! -A & R

It’s Vegas, Baby!

We are here, and we’ve filmed a blog to celebrate!! So far, it has been a weekend of getting reacquainted, relaxing, and resting, but we found the time to shoot a quick update.

Cant wait for the show, hope to see you there…and if you can find the time to stop by CliQue tomorrow before the show – we will be hanging out!

Until then….

Not our best vlog…but probably our shortest!!

-A & R

Finding Revelation out of Desperation

On a wandering river

Alright people, here’s the deal: I had to be up early this morning in order to catch a ride with my husband to the airport. That means that by the time you read this, I will likely already there, waiting very impatiently for my flight. I’m writing this on Wednesday, a day ahead of time.

You know those crazy butterflies you get in your stomach when you realize you’re just minutes away from seeing the band? Or that feeling when you walk into the hotel or venue and you know that there are other Duranies, or even the band themselves, in the building? It is a mixture of nausea with a jolt of excitement – like you’ve had too much caffeine?? Yeah, I’ve got it all right now.

I love it.

The feeling isn’t new, but I can’t remember the last time I felt like this. Even last December I almost dreaded the trip. My husband had just been laid off work. The only reason I still went was because I’d committed to being there. I didn’t want to let friends down. The weekend, although fun, still gave me a pit of dread in my belly. I couldn’t wait to get back home on New Years Eve. I just felt bad being there knowing that my husband wasn’t having a great time looking for work.

Not this time.

Going on together

I’m packing and getting ready, and I feel good. Things aren’t perfect. I mean, I’m not at my fittest. The struggle is real with basic things like seeing (I need new glasses!), but I feel good. I’m anxious to see my friends, and I’m looking forward to enjoying the weekend. This is a definitely and welcome improvement.

This is your final reminder to follow us on social media…we will do our best to entertain!

dailyduranie on Instagram

Daily Duranie on Facebook

@dailyduranie on Twitter

Well, it is about time for me to board my plane, so I’d better skedaddle. I’m hoping technology doesn’t fail me and I can get some video posted on Twitter and Facebook. Perhaps even a Facebook live when possible. I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend, but you’ll be seeing me soon!

-R

Standing On A Roof Up Here

This is where it starts

One of the best things to ever come from listening to Duran Duran, at least for me, has been friendship. When I was in sixth and seventh grade, completely awkward looking and feeling (may those school photos never surface…), finding other girls who liked Duran Duran helped me feel a little more normal. Still nerdy and weird, but not alone. As a mom of two, Duran Duran was my one “adult-outlet”. Now, as a middle-aged mom of two adults along with one 10-going-on-15 year old, I have a few incredibly good friends that are my people.

Now, I know that the band doesn’t like to pat themselves on the back for that sort of thing. I get it. You can’t just go around taking credit for saving the world and all that. On the other hand though, isn’t it remarkable that the music continues to bring people together?!? Relationships have been formed, many of them proving to be long lasting and able to withstand thousands of miles in distance. No, I don’t think you can be “proud” of that, per se….but I do believe it’s worthy of marveling over, just a little.

Saying goodbye to darkness

I think of my own fandom in two parts, really. The first would be when I was in school, all the way through college. I adored the band, but I wasn’t involved in a true fan community. Coincidentally, this was all before social media was ever a thing. The second part started in about the year 2000, continuing through present day. Naturally, social media plays a gigantic role in my fandom activities. It is how I first “met” every single one of my current Duran Duran friends. It is also how I stay in touch. I’m not a phone person. I’ll text all day long, but I HATE speaking on the phone. A lot of that has to do with my hearing, but that’s another story for another day.

I’ve known Amanda since 2004. I have a few other friends (Jess, Lisa, Tarcia, Tracye, Robin, Krissie and a few others that I’m failing to list and will likely hear from later) that I’ve been friends with since almost Day One, which would be slightly before I met Amanda. Many of those women have drifted off into their own worlds now, but we still stay in touch. Who said you can’t meet “real” friends online???

When Amanda and I hosted Durandemonium several years back, our goal was to bring fans together. It mattered very little to me whether or not we received any sort of “notoriety” from having put that party together. I didn’t care about being recognized, or having someway call me an uber fan. My joy came from seeing people make new friends. I still see many of those friendly faces when I go to shows, and I like the idea that the weekend that we, along with a great group of organizers, brought people closer.

Now I can see the big idea

Lately, I’ve been spending more time on Twitter. The whole social media thing has had it’s own strange learning curve with me. At first, I spent more time on Facebook (after message boards), then I moved to Twitter, and then back towards Facebook. Now, I’m on Twitter a lot.

Plenty of fans backed off from Twitter once John and Simon stopped tweeting. Even Dom only surfaces once or twice in a blue moon, and I don’t see nearly the same amount of activity on Twitter from fans. But I’m not really there for the band members. (Yes I know everyone says that. I’m not, though. I was there before Duran Duran even joined Twitter!) I like the flow of Twitter. Ignoring the political stuff, the anger and angst – I like to talk about music. There are plenty of people on there that know far more than I do, and I enjoy learning from them.

I feel like I’ve started to fall in with some new friends, whom I treasure. They don’t seem to mind that I write Daily Duranie, or that I’m overly opinionated about some things. I definitely don’t mind that most of them know far more about Duran Duran than I do. In fact, I appreciate it. Our chats range from discussions about Nick’s fashion sense to talking about newly mentioned producers.

One of my newer friends is a podcaster (If you haven’t taken the time to listen to “The D-Side”, you should), another is a photographer (shout out to @BBamok – you’ve seen her work because DDHQ reposts it every once in a while. She is incredibly talented!), still another lives in Birmingham and does beautiful sketches and paints, and a few others are DD collectors that have proven over and over that I know almost NOTHING about Duran Duran. I love them all.

One of them is planning a Duranie party in Atlanta in April. I’m actually considering using a frequent flier ticket and going out there. I haven’t done something like that in years – and I think getting together with other fans is exactly what I need. Just like anyone else, getting away from the house isn’t an easy task for me, so I am going to need to figure out the logistics and have answers before I mention it very quickly in passing to my husband…but I’m working on it!

An empire in a day, built on hope

So what is all of this musing really about, then? I suppose that I’m reminding myself that the best part of being involved in a fan community is in fact the “community” part. Meeting new people, making new friends, learning new things. That is what makes life so wonderful and rich. In turn, if I can remind someone else of that before going into what can sometimes be a crazed, fan-frenzied environment, so be it.

The real experiences and memories don’t come solely from getting that picture of John Taylor. I know that very few of you will believe me there, but it’s true, at least for me. I have one photo with Simon, and another with Dom. Those memories are nice, but when I think about being a Duran Duran fan – those pictures aren’t what my mind drifts to most often. Obviously, the shows and music go without saying, but what else?

My smiles come from thinking about ordering that first vodka tonic with Amanda, when we discovered we liked the same cocktail. I think about listening to Mac tell me about the time John came walking down an escalator. One of my favorite memories was the time Walt drove Amanda and I up in the Hollywood Hills, which culminated in a litany of curse words from me as I exclaimed “Start the damn truck Walt and get us the hell out off of his driveway!” I think about the Ace Hotel, the Sunset Marquis, and how cocktails that mix vodka and champagne are unkind a few hours later. Hurricanes and PB&J’s with Mac and Jess in New Orleans, my friendships with Lori and Suzie, and of course those trips to the UK are the things I think about whenever I start to feel down.

When I can raise it up again

I am so lucky. So, so lucky. It feels good to spend a few minutes in gratitude over the times that I have had in this fan community. I really don’t want or need time directly in front of the band or a band member in order to make my life full or have meaning. I’ve hit the jackpot in so many other ways when it comes to Duran Duran. Seeing the band again in Las Vegas, and more importantly having the opportunity to connect with everyone while I’m there is a bonus to what has already been a wonderful ride.

I wish everyone the very best time in Vegas or New Orleans. We’re going to have a great time! Hope to see many of you along the way – say hi if you see me!

-R

See them walking

As the lights (or sequins) flashing out are so bright

Is anyone else enjoying the pictures, set lists and tweets that seem to go hand-in-hand with touring? I love seeing the flurry of activity, the pictures from backstage (Questionable fashion choices included, l might add. Nice sequins, John.), and even the posts from other fans at the shows. It reminds me of how much I enjoy the whole touring process, even if I can’t be at every show.

Walk right out to the four line track

This week, however, I am very lucky to be able to say I’m getting ready to leave for Las Vegas on Thursday. In the past, I’d hop in my car and just drive the four hours. Maybe I’m weird, but I LIKE driving. I love the idea of being alone with my own thoughts, listening to my own music, and making my own way (no pun intended…really…) there. Unfortunately though, the distance from my current address makes the trip less-than-optimal, so I am flying. I leave on Thursday morning, and I’m flying on a fairly tiny plane – just 30 seats – which should make the trip interesting!

Naturally, the one time I am flying on a very small plane, there’s a chance of snow. Now, I realize most of you live in snowy climates. Snow isn’t exactly “news”…except that this is happening in Las Vegas, which is really not known for snow. I’m not really concerned about the weather – as long as my little plane is able to take off and land at the appropriate places. I would also like to put it out there that I hope everyone else has safe travels, too. After that, I’ll be inside…and probably at a bar. I mean, it’s my vacation!

Sense a rhythm humming

We’ve had quite a few people ask us about meet-ups this week. Here is the thing: we get in on Thursday afternoon and will be ready for fun by late afternoon! This time though, Amanda and I sort of agreed that we’d do things more casually. The pressure of putting something together didn’t appeal to me, and I liked the idea of just going with the flow. I realize that for many of you coming, you might have been hoping for firm plans and big parties. What I will tell you is this, we’ll post where we’re going and you can decide to join in. It’ll BE a big party no matter what, but it takes a little bit of the pressure and planning off of us to do it more like a “pop-up” hangout. Looking forward to seeing everyone!!

In the meantime, I can give the heads up that Mandalay Bay has a pretty good live band that plays in their Rhythm & Riffs lounge right in the middle of the casino. Their name is Phoenix, and they’re a solid cover band. They’ve been at Mandalay for at least 6 years now, if my memory serves. They play a pretty good variety, but they are mainly rock, not pop. They’re not going to break into “Rio”…for example. They go on at 10 on Thursday, and I believe 10:30 on Fridays. I wouldn’t be surprised if you found a bunch of us there on Thursday night, if you happen to be in town and want to open the weekend with a good party!

Wider baby, smile (we haven’t made a million…more like SPENT a million…..)

Now, for those of you who aren’t going to be in Las Vegas, I am going to try my best to keep my phone out of water this time, and post more videos! Dance parties, meet-ups, bar “visits”…Duran shows… what could be better?!? Even if you’re not there, our job is to make you feel like you are still taking part in the action! Watch this space, and stay tuned to our social media!

If you’re not already following Daily Duranie on Facebook , @dailyduranie on Twitter, and dailyduranie on Instagram, what are you waiting for? Add us, and stay up to the minute with our Vegas adventure!!

-R

You Had Plans All Along

If someone asked you what your greatest strength or talent was, what would you say?  I’m not talking about the skill or quality for a job interview, even though it could be used at work as well.  No, I’m thinking about the essential element of who you are and when you are using this, it feels good and right.  Would Simon say that he is an entertainer?  What about Nick?  Or John?  Would they say artist?  Multi-media specialist?  The past week has made me think a lot about what mine is.  This skill or quality I am thinking of is used here with fandom, at work and during political actions or campaigns.

Some of you have guessed that it is organization.  I thrive in situations which require organization.  To me, there is nothing better than when I have worked hard to organize something and it goes well.  I feel that way at work when I plan a great lesson.  I definitely feel that way when political campaigns result in a win for my candidates.  Likewise, I love when I am able to organize surrounding my fandom.  Over the last eight years or so, Rhonda and I have found ourselves organizing various fan events from simple meet ups to online parties to a full-blown weekend convention.  Each time those events went well, I felt successful.  Sometimes, like with the convention, Durandemonium, successful doesn’t adequately describe how I felt afterwards.  I was on top of the world, ready to do more.  I mean, who doesn’t like it when the core of who they are helps to create something fun?

As you all know, Rhonda and I have been thinking about doing something like a mini-convention in Las Vegas during the weekend that the band is playing there in February 2019.  We have brainstormed some ideas and have sought out information.  Hopefully, we will be able to figure out something definite soon so that we can share and start signing people up!  Here is what I can tell you.  Right now, we are thinking about doing something Thursday night as a welcome party of sorts.  Then, we would have activities during the day on both Friday and Saturday.  Obviously, Friday and Saturday nights would be taken up with the shows themselves.

For those of you who were not at the convention in 2013, some of the activities we had included get to know you games (Duran style), other Duran related games, video viewing, book talks and a party.  If you were at Durandemonium, what did you think of those activities?  Which did you like best?  If you weren’t at that convention, what sounds good to you?  What are some other suggestions you might have?

We would like to get the ball rolling for whatever we do in Vegas as quickly as we can for various reasons, including to reserve a space, start planning the activities and make sure that everyone knows that they should come in on Thursday to party with us!  Nothing is obviously definite as there are lots of factors that we need to consider before we totally commit to it, but I am feeling optimistic.  Maybe, it is just my desire to use those organizational skills but I don’t think so.  Is there anything much better than a bunch of Duranies hanging out together and having fun?  I don’t think so!

-A

No Time for Worry

So maybe you have heard that Rhonda and I have shows coming up in 2019.  Yes, I admit that we are very fortunate.  I acknowledge the fact that there are many, many, many fans that are nowhere near as lucky.  I wish that every Duran fan had shows to look forward to.  In thinking about this, I’m going to take a minute or two here to simply be grateful that, at least right now, when it comes to Duran, I’m lucky.  Lately, I have been feeling like anything but in the rest of my life.  Life has been hard.  I have spent much of my energy just working my way back from holes of unhappiness just to “okay” status.  Happiness is not a word I use or have used for a long time.  Needless to say, I need some joy.

When the three shows (one in New Orleans and two in Vegas) were announced, I did not hesitate to pass that information on to Rhonda in an “official Duranie alert” capacity.  When the information popped up, I didn’t stop and think about any potential negatives.  For example, I wouldn’t say that we had a great time at the last show at the Chelsea in December of 2017 due to a giant standing in front of us blocking our view and a number of potential fights almost breaking out.  I chose not to even think about a repeat of that show.  Likewise, I didn’t stop and complain that these shows were once again in Vegas.  While I’m able to get there, I admit that it would be nice for me to not have to fly.  The Midwest, I hear, is lovely!  (Hint!)  Just sayin’.  I heard that some fans questioned whether or not the setlist and performance would be much different from the Paper Gods Tour.  Nope, that thought did not really enter my mind.  Why is that?  I suspect a lot of it is my need for joy but also just being grateful that I will get another show, another weekend with friends.

I have been thinking about how life was ten or even a few years ago.  I have to admit that I remember myself complaining about various things, including work, politics, parents, etc.  Looking back, I clearly didn’t realize how lucky I had it.  Sure, there are always things that can be improved, made better, fixed but I wish I understood then that things could also be a lot worse.  In hindsight, I don’t think I appreciated how good life was then.  Things felt easier.  No, they were not perfect but better than they are now as so many aspects of my life have just gotten tougher, harder, more challenging.

Funny enough, when thinking about Duran, I am willing to bet that I did the exact same thing.  When I look back to different eras like Astronaut and All You Need Is Now, I have a lot of fondness.  Some of the best memories and moments took place during those album cycles.  Yet, if you read this blog in 2011 and 2012 or even 2013, you probably didn’t see me being super grateful.  In all honesty, I suspect that there might have been some criticism.  While I still think that there can be room for improvement when it comes to Duranland, I no longer am or want to be the person that picks out all of the band’s flaws.  No, they are not perfect.  Yes, they could grow in multiple ways.  But I have a choice.  Do I want to just complain or enjoy what I have?

Sure, I could vent some frustration over Ticketmaster because it truly does suck or spew continued annoyance by the lack of setlist changes.  Those would be valid criticisms.  Yet, I have so many other things to worry about than every little crappy aspect of being a fan of this band.  Instead, I would rather embrace the joy, the fun, the friendship, the escape that Duran shows and tours brings.  So, you won’t hear me complain about the setlist or the venue in February.  No, I’m just going to be dang happy to be there.

-A