Why do Duranies go with non-Duranies to shows? Well, the answer is obvious, isn’t it? People go to shows with non-Duranies because either they don’t have any Duranies to go with or because they want to share their fandom with others. No matter the reason it seems to me that things can either go well or go very badly. I have to admit that I have gone to shows with a variety of different people. An ideal show, for me, would obviously be to go with Rhonda. Why? On top of being my best friend, we both have the same philosophy about the band, shows, and activities surrounding the shows. For me, all three elements are essential for the best time. The first element is clear and was basically what the conversation surrounded on twitter. I prefer to go with other fans. I will be even more clear. I want to go to shows with Duranies and not just people who liked Rio back in the day or can sing the Reflex. They have to be fans and I think we all know the difference. There has to be a passion for the band. They don’t have to know everything I know about the band but they have to have strong feeling for the band and their music. Perhaps, then, a spark will take place which results in them finding out more about the band. To me, anything less results in disappointment. The second element revolves the show itself and how to behave at a show. I won’t lie here. I sing (badly) at a show. I don’t sit down. I might scream once or twice, particularly after a JoSi moment. I move around. I watch the band closely, especially that bass player guy. Again, ideally, I would love to be close as the experience is enhanced and, generally, I’m willing to pay to be close. So, what if the person or people you go with, don’t want to pay. What if they don’t sing or dance? What if they would be horrified by your behavior? Again, I think this could end in disappointment even if you go with Duranies. Lastly, the activities surrounding a show are also important. I like to meet up with people before and after a show, for dinner and/or drinks. My post show nights are, generally, not early as I like to go out. I like to have a good time and a Duran show is the perfect time to do it. Again, if the person or people you are with, don’t like to do that, it isn’t going to be as fun. It is quite possible that everyone involved won’t be happy as some compromise to make the others happy but the happy ones aren’t that happy because their companion(s) aren’t really excited. Thus, to me, all three elements are important.
Of course, there have been times that Rhonda and I can’t go to shows together. It is one of the not fun parts of living so far away from each other. During those times, I have sought out different people to go with. In many, if not most, cases, the night has gone badly. Sometimes, it has gone so badly that I know it as it is happening. For example, once, I was unable to watch the show when the person I went with couldn’t handle being among the masses in a GA show. Other times, it takes a while to really understand what went wrong. Usually, those are the shows that I have gone with people who like Duran but aren’t Duranies. In those cases, I have usually had to listen to them complain about Duran did or didn’t do. For example, one person complained that Duran wasn’t spontaneous enough and actually compared them to Depeche Mode. For the record, I like Depeche but their setlists, at times, don’t vary at all. Literally, it is the same songs in the same order every night. Anyway, I didn’t want to argue with this friend. Sometimes, the person I have gone with may appear to be a Duranie or a could be Duranie. Those experiences are the ones that really disappoint when it turns out that the person isn’t and never will be. Now, of course, not all of my show going experiences with non-Duranies have been bad. The ones that haven’t been have, at least, 2 out of the 3 elements, though. My friend, Robyn, has gone with me a couple of times. She likes Duran but isn’t a Duranie. At the shows we have been to, though, Duranie friends have been present. On top of that, she goes to shows like I do. She will sing and dance, too. She also likes to go out before and/or after. Yes, perhaps, my expectations play a significant role. Maybe, others don’t have as high of expectation as I do, which is why things have gone well for them.
Despite good experiences with Robyn, I truly hope that the people I go to the rest of my shows with me are on the same page with me. I wish that everyone had people to go with who are on the same page as they are. This leads me to the fan community. Isn’t part of the reason fans talk to other fans to make friends in order to have people to go to shows or fan events with? I know that was the exact reason that I went to the Duran Convention in New Orleans in 2004. I knew that there was a tour coming up and wanted to have people to go with. I would love for every Duranie to go to shows with other Duranies. Perhaps, the fan community can work to have that happen!