Forty years ago, Duran Duran was the hottest band on the planet. Fast forward to now, well, they’re still pretty hot.
Over a 12-month stretch, the British new wave legends dropped a 15th studio album, Future Past, which debuted at No. 3 on the Official U.K. Chart; they performed at the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in the band’s birthplace, Birmingham, England; and headlined an open-air show at London’s Hyde Park, with 70,000 fans looking on. Add to that, induction into the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame next month (the band was the top vote-getter from the public), and the upcoming release of a concert film entitled A Hollywood High, it’s been all-sizzle for the lads.
Earlier this week, frontman Simon Le Bon stopped by Jimmy Kimmel Live for a look to the future, the past, and a proper rockstar reception.
When the screams and hollering from the live audience died down, Le Bon admitted that the band was deceptively resilient. “It’s the 20th comeback, I think,” he says. “There’s so many comebacks, we haven’t gone away.”
That trip down memory lane included a revisit to the historic all-star Band-Aid charity single “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” (it was the first time he had met Bono and The Edge), and the Live Aid concerts that followed in July 1985. Kimmel, like many of us, taped the entire event, spread over concerts in London and Philadelphia, on VHS.
“It was mind-boggling,” Le Bon recounts of the concerts, spearheaded by Bob Geldof to raise money for famine relief in Africa. His hot take was of Stephen Stills, of Crosby, Stills, and Young, telling Duran Duran, who were prepping backstage, to “shut the f*** up.”
Le Bon typically doesn’t discuss the lyrics to those ‘80s mega-hits. Fallon went there, unpicking “Hungry Like The Wolf” and “The Reflex.”
Later, the Brit took his place at the mic with Duran Duran for a performance of “Invisible,” the first track lifted from 2021’s Future Past.
A Hollywood High is due out on Nov. 3, and will include exclusive interviews and archival footage in which the pop-rock legends dissect their decades long obsession with the City of Angels.
They’re set for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Nov. 5 as part of the class of 2022, which also includes Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo, Eminem, Eurythmics, Dolly Parton, Lionel Richie and Carly Simon.