24 Facts: Duran Duran

2010-10-19 09:15
1.    Duran Duran formed in Birmingham in 1978 in a nightclub called Rum Runner.

2.    The owners of the club, brothers Paul and Michael Berrow, became the band's management, paying them to work as doormen, disc jockeys and glass collectors when they were not rehearsing.

3.    The group was formed by Nick Rhodes, John Taylor and Stephen Duffy, with the later addition of Roger Taylor and, after numerous personnel changes, Andy Taylor and Simon Le Bon.

4.    None of the three Taylors are related.

5.    Fashion designers Kahn & Bell and Antony Price helped build the band an elegant image that earned them the nickname "the prettiest boys in rock" from People Magazine. They even worked with Vivienne Westwood in the 1990s and Giorgio Armani in the 2000s.

6.    Duran Duran was among the first bands to have their videos shot by professional directors with 35 mm film movie cameras, which gave their videos a much more polished look.

7.    They were also among the earliest bands to work on their own remixes.

8.    In late 1980 the band ignited a bidding war between the EMI and Phonogram Records.

9.    Although EMI won the bidding war, Nick Rhodes later told Deluxe magazine in a 1998 interview that the band felt "appallingly ripped off" as a result of signing a contract with EMI.

10.    Despite the “rip-off” the band released a self-titled (first) album in 1981 in which their first single, “Planet Earth”, hit the number 12 spot in UK Top 20 chart.

11.    The band’s controversial third single, “Girls on Film”, found a number 5 spot in the UK charts two weeks after the launch of MTV in the US. The video of the song became a talking point after it depicted topless women mud wrestling and pillow fighting among other sexually inclined stunts.  The video was banned by the BBC and heavily edited for MTV. An uncut version can be found on the bands video collection DVD.

12.    Some members broke out of the band in 1985 to form two bands, Arcadia and Power Station. The two breakaway bands went on to produce noteworthy chart-topping hits.

13.    The 1985 single “A View to Kill” was included as a theme song for a James Bond movie of the same title.

14.    In 1986 Duran Duran was reduced to a trio comprising Rhodes, John Taylor and Le Bon. Guitarist Warren Cuccurullo and drummer Sterling Campbell joined later.

"Skin Trade" (1987)

15.    In 1993, the band released a second self-titled album:  Duran Duran: The Wedding Album. The cover of this follow up featured wedding photos of the band members' parents.

16.    In 2006, Duran Duran remade John Lennon's  “Instant Karma!” for the Make Some Noise campaign sponsored by Amnesty International.

17.   The poorly received single "Someone Else Not Me" did well on video and is noted as the first to be produced entirely with flash animation.

18.     In October 2010 the band’s Facebook page and Google search boasted 298,337 fans and over 9.9 million hits respectively.

19.    Between 2001- 2003 the band was out of contract. They went on tour to prove the drawing power of the band. Fan and media response are said to have exceeded expectations.

20.    Nick Rhodes is the only band member who has never broken away from the group.

21.    Singer Justin Timberlake has openly admitted to being one of Duran Duran’s biggest fans.

22.    The band's music has been sampled by a number of hip hop artists, most notably slain rapper Notorious B.I.G., who sampled its 1986 single “Notorious”.

23.    Between 7-12 December 2010, the band will be touring South Africa.

24.    Duran Duran will release their 14th album titled All You Need is Now somewhere between February and March 2011.

Duran Duran tour SA in December 2010. We decided to take a look at the band that was once referred to as "the prettiest boys in rock".
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