March 29: From today's Daily Record | Old romantics: Duran guys are back on road | Duran lads set to storm the Castle - Duran Duran plan to let their loyal Scottish fans be the first to hear new songs written by British pop’s latest “supergroup”. The 80s favourites – led by singer Simon Le Bon – play Edinburgh Castle on July 16. Simon said: They’re locked in the studio working on the eagerly awaited followup to 2007 album Red Carpet Massacre, produced by charttopping Timbaland. “We’re moving in a different musical direction with these guys than we did with Timbaland. Read it all in the scan I just uploaded for you!

March 29: Duran Duran part ways with Sony Music | Simon Le Bon conclude his blog from March 27th, 2009 giving the news about the band's departure from Sony, here is what he says:

[...] possibly the best news today: We are free of SONY music corp.

Good luck guys with this new adventurous chapter of the Duran Duran's life!

March 29: The news about the Hodgson collaboration has made the headlines in many music websites but it also appeared on the scottish Daily Record newspaper from march 26th. In the same issue there's also an article about the Edinburgh show. Download scans of both articles here and here

from Rolling Stone.com:

We texted Ronson and here’s what he had to say when we asked about working again with Winehouse:

“Maybe… Trying. Working with Duran Duran right now. It sounds fckuing amazing!

Simon says [in his blog from march 27th]: "We worked up three new songs [with Mark] yesterday alone, and at this rate we’ll be probably be able to match Prince - double album for double album this year. BTW, does anybody actually want, sorry: does anyone actually know what to do - with a double album these days?"

March 26: Duran Duran will play a live show exactly 29 years after their very first performance at Rum Runner. This will happen at Edinburgh Castle on Thursday 16th July as part of the 2009 Edinburgh Castle Concert series. “We are currently in the studio, working on new music,” reported singer Simon Le Bon, “so are only going to be doing a handful of special dates this year. When the offer to play in this historic location presented itself, we were all keen to make it happen. It’s been a while since we’ve played in Scotland – but have always had a great time playing to audiences there.”

“Tomorrow Belongs to Duran Duran”

On agoust 10th 2001 Simon answered an "ask katy" question about the very first song he sang live in front of an audience as lead singer for Duran. He said "it was a cover of “I Feel Love” originally by Donna Summer. It was July 16th 1980 at the Rum Runner club in Birmingham, we came onstage to “Tomorrow Belongs to Me” the Hitler Youth song from “Cabaret” - precocious or what? I was so nervous the entire left hand side of my body was shaking for the duration of the show...

Download a scan of the article from yesterdays Independent [Life] about the Uk summer festivals circuit. The article mentions Duran Duran's appearance at Lovebox festival.

the Independent [Life]

March 25: Updates from the studio.

From the nme.com | Kaiser Chiefs’ drummer and songwriter Nick Hodgson has written a number of songs with Duran Duran for their new album.

The band are currently in the studio with Mark Ronson, who invited Hodgson in to work with Le Bon and co. “I called Nick a week ago and asked if he’d be interested in coming to work with Duran Duran and write a song” Ronson told nme.com. “He’s never done that before, because he only writes with Ricky and his own band, but I thought it made a lot of sense because there’s a lot of Kaiser Chiefs songs I could imagine being on a Duran Duran record 25 years ago.” The producer says Hodgson worked with the band for “five or six hours”, and they wrote three songs together: “One is quite rocky, one is more Italo disco” he says. ”Two of them I would definitely say are making the record.” Ronson will work on the record until the end of this week. He will then return to New York, where he will perform at the launch of Topshop next week.

From Simon's blog just published on dd.com:

"We have had such an inspired session so far. in the 5 days we’ve worked there, we have seen the nuts of 8 new songs starting to grow on our tree" [...] "Yesterday we had a surprise visitor, in the shape of Nick Hodgson drummer and songwriter with the fabulous Kaiser Chiefs"

From katy Kafe up on ddm.com:

Nick Rhodes says that the band is recording the new music with sound engineer Andrew 'Snake' Newton. Newton is also credited for recording Falling Down and engineering the Red Carpet Massacre World Tour and the Songbook tv programme. Newton spent the weekend [prior to the Mark Ronson session] mixing 11 tracks with Rhodes. With the help of Newton the band will record the new album in surround 5.1. Nick is also so excited about his new mac powerbook.

March 25: In the latest katy Kafe up on ddm.com Nick Rhodes was so talkative that he finally confirmed the news about the possible release of a documentary film [*as we reported on feburary 26*] and he reveals the definitive title: it's Drama Americana. Nick says that the prodouct is now finished and he confesses that he's very pleased with the title; the documentary was filmed during the 2005 astronaut tour. He says: "it needs to go out soon, so it will be released on dvd, download or whatever it is". "We got a whole list of things circling aorund the duran duran airport waiting to land. We have some remixes and at some stage we will try to put them out, in some kind of prodouct. We also have a lot of footage we filmed on the south american tour, mostly documentary and a little bit of live stuff, but I think it's very different than anything else we have put out before. It needs editing, hours of editing..." About concerts, Nick talks about some east european surprises.

"We got a whole list of things circling aorund the duran duran airport waiting to land"

March 19: Great news! The band is back in the studio in good company, yesterday Mark Ronson joined them!

*Updated March 20*: Mark Ronson has started work on the new Duran Duran record, and tells NME.com it’s their best material in 15 years.

"I’m such a fan that I know what a Duran Duran fan would want to hear".

Ronson went into the studio with the band on Wednesday (March 18) and says it’s already going so well that he hopes to do the full album. “Today we started a song, and it has to be my favourite Duran Duran song in at least 15 years,” he said. “We made this beat, this backing track, and I was like ‘why don’t you guys start jamming over it?’, and all of a sudden its like instant Duran Duran. Just add water, you know?” A fan of the band’s since childhood, the producer says he was apprehensive at the prospect of working with the Brit legends. “I was so nervous the night before, I’m always like that the night before every project, like ‘this is the one they’re going to figure out I’m a fraud’. But I’m such a fan that I know what a Duran Duran fan would want to hear. It’s going so well at this point, I’d like to do half a record, maybe a whole record with them.” He says that despite their longevity, Duran Duran are still very much in touch with what’s happening currently in the music scene. “They’re at a point in their career where they could just accept lifetime achievement awards and play a few festivals but they actually care so much about new music. They have an impeccable knowledge about old really cool avant-garde stuff but they’re really up on their shit. They’ll talk to you about TV On The Radio and Klaxons, and they’re not just saying it to be trendy, they’re actually really into it. I feel like there’s a lot of bands especially now that are really indebted to them, I’m sure Brandon Flowers and all these people would be the first to say it.” NME.com

March 19: A gem and a great find for anyone who loves the early years like me! This interview from the Saturday Shake-Up programme featuring Simon Le Bon and Andy Taylor is only 28 years old, infact is dated 28 March 1981. After 28 years is still unseen to the majority of the Duran Duran fans. Here is an excerpt from the tv show with the two guys around the release of their first single Planet Earth [released on 2 February 1981]. Shake-up was a saturday morning entertainment and music programme presented by Christine Anderson, Alastair Pirrie and Graham Thornton.

Download a free preview clip from itn site

and... If you like old videos you have to download this funny interview from the 1982 tv show The Tube presented by Paula Yates [Check out Nick pulling John's hair!]. Download itn clip

Something newer, a clip from Gavin Elder's Documentary on Duran Duran 2003-2005 [filmed on Kodachrome K40]. The video is up on supersens.nl. This clip might be part of the documentary that the band hoped to release in 2008 under the title "Looking for Sushi [On Tour With Duran Duran]? Who knows?! Check it out

March 15: On march 12 Meredith Ostrom and Nick Rhodes attended the 'Naked Soul' Exhibition, presented by Meredith Ostrom in support of 'Youth For Youth', a charity that works to prevent gang violence and drug use, in Howick Place. Above pics of Meredith's body art; Many of her paintings focus on her own naked physical form impressed onto vividly painted canvas. A video [made by Pauline Amos] of Meredith doing her body painting art was shown during the exhibition. Photos of the couple [?] at the exhibition can be found in the main photo agencies websites.

March 16: Tina Lawson took some great pics of the band in Columbus back in December 2008, she uploaded them on her Flickr account and told me "I love duranasty.com, one of my all time favorite DD sites! I'd be so pleased to have a link to my pics there. Thanks!". So here you go! The quality of Tina's pics is amazing and you can even downlaod them in full size. Enjoy! Thanks Tina for sharing such a great quality collection of pics!

Press, press, press! Who loves press? I do for sure, I'm never tired to read and see what kind of coverage the guys gets around the world when they are on tour or promoting. I'm still getting stuff from the RCM tour and since these haven't been posted yet I'll trow them in this 2008 post. Here you go with a bunch of magazines scans including one of Simon dining in Manila!

Dato magazine | Chile | november 2008 | cover

Dato magazine | Chile | november 2008 | article

Rogue magazine | Manila | june 2008

Rogue magazine | Manila | may 2008

Sin Elite magazine | Italy | 2008

Absolute magazine | Italy | sept-oct 2008

 

March 12: Simon Le Bon, his brother Jonathan, and Presenters Ed Leigh and Graham Bell, alongside Chris Williams, went Ice Sailing [on a frozen lake] in Sweden back in february. They flew across the ice on catamarans at speeds of up to 100kph - High Altitude programme has been aired on BBC2 on 8 March. I just uploaded some screencaps of the tv show [click on the banner below], enjoy! Guess who won?! You can also watch a clip of the programme here

March 11: by local correspondent Kathy [first from left in the pic below] | "The Gryphon Nighclub at the Seminole Hard Rock was the place to be on Saturday, March 7th, when Roger Taylor and Jake Fonique's brought their spectacular "Do it in Heels" set to Hollywood, Florida. Saturday, March 7th was a beautiful South Florida evening for the fan gathering at the Gryphon that coincided with the 25th anniversary of Duran's concert at the old Hollywood Sportatorium back in March 1984. The Gryphon's atmosphere, lighting, special effects, and professional dancers are much like the clubs you'll see a half hour away in Miami's South Beach. DJ Matt Spector opened the evening's festivities. Then, by the time Roger and Jake took over the DJ booth at 1:00 a.m., the Gryphon's dance floor and bars were packed elbow to elbow with people. When DD's multi-talented drummer appeared, the 40 or so Duranies in the room screamed "Roger! Roger! Roger!" As Roger and Jake kept the music going, DD fans danced alongside the South Florida club-going regulars, who are used to dancing to world-renowned DJs. In fact, Samantha Ronson, accompanied by Lindsey Lohan, spun in the club adjacent to the Gryphon at the Hard Rock that night. But you would have never known it at the Gryphon, as the attendees obviously loved Roger & Jake. Apparently, the feeling was mutual: The DJs interacted with the crowd, laughed, clapped their hands, and put their hands up in the air. Everyone enjoyed Roger & Jake's selection of music, and it was non-stop dancing for three solid hours. Afterwards, Roger graciously shook hands and took pictures with his fans. One of the fans, Erin [pictured below with Roger], received a gift bag containing Roger's autographed "Modern Drummer" magazine to mark the 25th anniverary of the SBS tour. Also included in the blue & silver gift bags, in homage to the bands that influenced DD, were Sex Pistols & Chic albums and memorabilia, as well as other DD and DJ Roger-related gifts. Additionally, several DD fans went home with "Do it in Heels" posters and place cards, which were provided to us by the club. The other gift bag winner, Fatima, discovered DD in the '90s while a teen, and has been a devoted fan ever since. Although both gift bag recipients were from South Florida, people traveled from various parts throughout the United States for the "Do it in Heels" night at the Gryphon".

Also check out the incredible collection of pics taken by Teajay that night: gryphon2009

March 7: from duranduran.com | Roger gives some Duran Duran info in his recent blog. Our drummer writes from New York where he have been deejaying at Cielo Club and says: "We had two weeks in London, which went really very, very well. [...] I do think we have 20 really great ideas fro songs, we are all very excited about it. I feel as though it’s going to be a great album since we’re very free now. It is just a very creative place to be, like a young band, just kind of following our instincts. [...] When I get back to London we’re going to go back in to the studio with Mark Ronson. I have no idea what it’s going to be like. I am feeling very good about it all".

March 7: On march 5, at 6.04am, Salvo and Claudia's second son has seen the light making their lives richer than before. Welcome on Planet Earth sweet Nicolò.

Wishing you a beautiful life.

yours daddy, mammy and Angelo.

March 7: I love to go retro when there's not so much news from the band and in the media. I have been listening to Liberty during the last week, one of the most underrated Duran Duran albums wich contains some gemms like My Antartica and Serious. Straight from my Duranarchive an article from International Musician and Recoding magazine from October 1990 where the band discusses the writing and recording process. I always learn something new about Duran Duran's music and their writing and recording process in articles like this, check it out:

Some more infos on Liberty

It's the first Duran Duran album to feature songwriting credits outside the original five band members. Guitarist Warren Cuccurullo and drummer Sterling Campbell were made permanent band members and given songwriting credits, although Campbell would leave in early 1991, before the band began work on their subsequent hit The Wedding Album. Writing and rehearsing for the album took place intermittently between May and July 1989; demo sessions took place in August and September, and final recording began on October 9 at Olympic Studios, with producer Chris Kimsey and engineer Chris Potter. Recording, production and overdubbing of the many keyboard and vocal layers dragged on until March 1990. A bootleg recording of the demo sessions for the album, titled Didn't Anybody Tell You? surfaced in 1999. Many unreleased, scrapped songs from the Liberty sessions were heard by the public for the very first time:

"Bottleneck"
"Money on Your Side"
"Dream Nation"
"In Between Woman"
"Worth Waiting For"
"My Family" [played live 1989]

When asked about the bootleg, John Taylor said, "I like coming across things that I've forgotten about. That I've forgotten that we recorded. That's what's really exciting about the Didn't Anybody Tell You bootleg, because there's so many songs on there that never got finished. They just take me back to that moment. Actually, what I like about that album is that the Liberty album - when we were rehearsing it, when we were writing it was gonna be a great album. I really felt it was gonna be a great album. When we got in the studio I fell apart and the production just wasn't right. It turned out to be a very mediocre album, but at the demo stage, which is what that [bootleg] album is all about, I think there's a great album in there. Could have been great songs."[quote from ttp].

March 1: On the official fan community website duranduranmusic.com there's a very informative video of the guys in the studio. Nick Rhodes talks about the first couple of weeks of songwriting, giving details about the instruments they are using [Dom has a 1953 Fender, Roger an electronic kit, Nick uses the usual stuff -Korg, Roland, Sequential Circuit- and John plays the same keyboard he used onstage during the RCM tour]. In the clip Nick describes their work and the writing process: "the studio is a compact room where we have been working the last couple of weeks, writing some new songs, we haven't done this for a while, not since the sessions with Timbaland, Justin Timberlake and Nate Hills. This is very different. We do not want to work with anyone else, It's just us. "We jam away and we play untill we find something, a seed, some DNA, a cell and we slowly build the song. It's a big artschool project.

 

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