Duran Duran

Duran Duran

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About Duran Duran

In a career that’s spanned decades, Duran Duran have always steered pop and rock music in futuristic directions. Formed in the late ’70s by childhood friends John Taylor and Nick Rhodes, the Birmingham, England, band settled on the lineup that would make them New Wave stars in 1980 with the addition of guitarist Andy Taylor, an avowed hard-rock fan, and theatrical frontman Simon Le Bon. Duran Duran were initially lumped in with the UK’s New Romantic movement, owing to their fashion aesthetic and their shimmering 1981 debut single, “Planet Earth.” However, their 1982 breakthrough LP, Rio, established them as sonic trendsetters, as the hits “Hungry Like the Wolf” and the title track paired fresh dance-floor grooves and an optimistic lyrical outlook with inspiration from David Bowie and Roxy Music, the vibrant rhythm section of disco stars Chic, and a dash of punk bravado. After Rio’s globe-trotting videos received heavy MTV support, an entirely new universe opened up to Duran Duran: mainstream pop stardom. They earned two No. 1 singles in the U.S.—a Nile Rodgers-helmed remix of “The Reflex” that boasted a funkier sound, and the sultry James Bond theme “A View to a Kill”—and became known as a dynamic live act. The group kept moving forward amid lineup changes (most notably, guitarist and Missing Persons cofounder Warren Cuccurullo spent 15 years in the band), leading to new generations of fans discovering Duran Duran via their 1993 self-titled album and its hit power ballad “Ordinary World.” Across the decades, they have continued to collaborate with modern pop icons (Justin Timberlake, Janelle Monáe) and innovative producers (Mark Ronson, Giorgio Moroder) while reinforcing their roots; an elegant 2021 cover of David Bowie’s “Five Years” captures the original’s wistful vibe through a bittersweet modern lens.

Birmingham, England
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