On this date in 2004, the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) honored Duran Duran the at their February Awards show, The Brits, with the Outstanding Contribution to Music Award. If you haven’t seen the video for this, it is a must.
I admit to loving this clip. First of all, I’m a total sucker for the montage of Duran’s career. It shows how much awesomeness Duran has been responsible for. Then, I appreciated how each band member had something to say to acknowledge those people who helped them be as successful as possible. I remember seeing this video in 2004 and just feeling proud. The pride was for being a fan of this band for so long at the same time I was so excited about what was about to come with this reunion. More than that, I loved seeing the band get the kudos that they had been deserving but never got.
Many fans who have been around a long time are aware that Duran Duran has always had a lot of criticism. Much of that criticism seemed to center around the fact that they had keyboards, cared about their fashion and wore make-up and/or had a lot of teenage fans. I rarely saw Duran get awards as a kid in the 1980s. I know that they received a couple of Grammy’s for their videos but that is about it. More often, I found myself trying to defend them or ignoring public criticism.
Sometimes, I wonder how they survived hearing/reading all of those negatives. I know how hard it is to ignore criticism directed towards you. In my experience, it often seeps in and hurts even when you know that the criticism is unfair or wrong. As a blogger, I have definitely experienced my fair share of negative comments. As a teacher, I deal with it a lot and more this year than previous years. For example, I have had a lot of criticism that my students are not performing as well as they should. I know that I have done a lot to help my students learn and achieve the best they can. Thus, this is a concern that I shouldn’t take to heart but I, too, often do. Typically, I respond with defensiveness and frustration. This is why any sort of validation means a lot to me. Last week, one of the assistant principals came to observe me. Her review was glowing. I needed that. It doesn’t erase all the negative assumptions but it helps.
I have to think awards like this help overcome the rough treatment Duran had experienced throughout the band’s career. Perhaps, the fact that it was such a significant award really helped. I know that awards shouldn’t be needed and they don’t, but that validation can really help. And why shouldn’t they or me receive that type of acknowledgement? Doesn’t everyone deserve recognition of a job well-done? I sure think so.