In the last couple of days, Duran has been posting about how they are filming the video for Girl Panic in London on June 6th and 7th. They have included some details, including the director’s name, the location being a posh hotel in central London and that supermodels are being flown in. These details all sound very Duran Duran. You would think that this would excite the fan base but not so much. Some people are confused by the choice of Girl Panic. Others question the importance of videos all together, especially Duran Duran videos. Both are fair points, I think.
I remember learning about Duran’s musical history as a kid. It seemed really easy to follow and understand the pattern. There would be a single and a video to go with it. Most albums had about three singles, on average. The songs would be played on the radio and the video would be played on MTV and other video shows. Now, this pattern doesn’t seem to be the case anymore, which is why the fan base reacts as cynically as they do. People knew that All You Need is Now was the first single of the album. The song was released on a different day than the album and could be downloaded independently. Then, of course, the video soon followed after that. This felt like the regular pattern for Duran, the pattern that we are all used to and comfortable with because that is what it has been like for the past 30 years or so. Then, there were statements about how Girl Panic was the second single. Okay. Everyone seemed okay with that. Yet, there was no video to follow or accompany this second single. Of course, neither song received much, if any, airplay, from what I have heard. While the video for AYNIN was played at least once on VH1. Then, we heard or read tweets from John about how they were releasing Leave a Light on as a single. Okay. Does this mean that it became the second single or the third? Then, strangely enough, we hear about the video shoot for Girl Panic. Huh? What’s really the second single? If Girl Panic was the second single, how come they waited so long to do the video shoot? While I suspect that they had this planned for awhile to go in between the UK tour and the Europe tour, could they really not find a time before this? Then, of course, some people question the purpose of videos at all.
Fans have wondered what the point of doing videos is for Duran. MTV doesn’t exist as it once did. Yes, VH1 shows videos but it isn’t like it used to be. Generally, videos are shown early in the morning only. Kids are not glued to these video channels like I once was. Of course, now we have youtube. That certainly isn’t the same either. I don’t know how many people go to youtube and just browse. Even if they do, what would make the random person land on a Duran clip. I think it is much more common for people to go to youtube and type in something specific. People have the choice of what to watch. That wasn’t really the case with MTV. We had to watch every video that came on if we wanted to watch videos. We were a captive audience. We could not just pick and choose which video to watch. This is why I know a ton of 80s songs, including the ones that I can’t stand. I doubt that kids could today say the same thing about current music. So, why would Duran film a new video? They aren’t going to get played a bunch of times each day on MTV. Maybe it will be on VH1 a couple of times but nothing significant. Will it get enough hits on youtube? I doubt it. Of course, one thing that must be acknowledged here is the purpose of videos to begin with. They are promotional pieces, a way to get people interested in buying the album. Will the Girl Panic video be able to do that? I doubt it. I would love to say and think differently, but I have to live in reality (at least some of the time!).
Based on this change of pattern and lack of actual promotion, I should be against them making a new video. Yet, I’m not. Why? I’m a Duranie and part of that means that I love their videos and am excited about seeing a new one. Of course, Rhonda and I will review this new video like we did for AYNIN. It was always so exciting to see a new clip when I was a kid and I still have that feeling now. Therefore, rationally, I might acknowledge that it probably won’t do much, especially if Girl Panic really isn’t the current or next single. Yet, emotionally, I’m all for it. I want to get excited and squee when there is a cute shot of one of the boys. I want to see what creative idea they came up with! I also really like the song so I look forward to seeing how they matched the visuals with the song.
Thus, if I am to interpret the reaction to this news, it has everything to do with our history as being Duran fans. Some fans are annoyed because things have changed both with how singles are announced and when as well as the role of videos. Others of us are still excited by seeing a new video. Of course, a big issue is that I’m just thrilled that they are continuing to do work. This gives me hope that everything will be okay with Duran and Simon, specifically. This week I will be glued to their Facebook and twitter to see if other details are released and to see how Simon is doing. Then, I will get excited to see the finished product as well!!!