At Last! The Duran Duran Interview I Get to See 29 Years Later

The other night, while searching on YouTube, I happened upon a video of something I was dying to watch when I was twelve, but because of a series of unfortunate events, was never able to.

That video was of an interview with Duran Duran, one time when they stopped in to MuchMusic in Toronto for a 20-minute impromptu chat. When it aired I caught the last 5 minutes of it – long enough to remember seeing Simon LeBon’s frosted tips, but short enough to think maybe I dreamt it…except, my actions following that brief glimpse as a kid tell me for sure it happened, and thanks to YouTube, I certainly have proof!

In November 1986, Duran Duran were touring the media outlets to promote the release of their Notorious album. MuchMusic, Canada’s answer to MTV was still considered fairly new, and at the time the town I was from, Sudbury, ON, only had the channel available on pay TV.

Thanks to my Step-Dad’s love of TV, he paid for access to MuchMusic. My sis and I loved that channel and would watch it whenever my Mom would loosen her grip on the dial. It was not uncommon for us to tape the channel during the day while we were at school to see if perhaps we would catch the latest videos from our favourite bands.

One Saturday afternoon that November, while my Step-Dad was flipping through the channels, I caught a glimpse of Duran Duran being interviewed by VJ, Erica Ehm…WHAT! Hello! What IS THIS!! I was obsessed with this band. Back then, stars popping by MuchMusic were never advertised in the TV Guide – black limos would breeze in, the bands would get interviewed on their way back from a photo shoot, and then get whisked away to the airport.  I was so ecstatic to see Simon LeBon on screen. Sadly, what I saw of the interview was very brief but I saw enough to know I wanted to see the entire thing!

Back then, there was no Vevo to watch videos. There was no downloading or streaming. PVRs? Forget it. You had to put up with waiting for your choice video to air on MuchMusic. If you were lucky, you would have a VCR to tape the videos so you could watch them again. MuchMusic itself aired 24 hours a day, and would repeat the programming that aired the day before overnight. Maybe I could catch the interview if it re-airs? I figured out in my own head that the interview was going to air again at 1 AM. Time to cook up a plan. I want to see this interview!

No matter which way I sliced it, I was going to encounter barriers. After all, I was twelve, living in 1986.

First barrier: My mother. This one was gonna be a doozy.

Second barrier: figuring out the best way to watch this interview.  The interview aired again late on MuchMusic. I knew there was no way my mom would let me stay up to watch it. Never mind, I had enough wherewithal to know I would not be awake at 1 AM. I was a twelve-year-old who happened to always be sensible about sleep. I loved my bed, and enjoyed sleeping. 1 AM? No way. Mom was a barrier, sleep was an even larger one.

Third barrier: the damn VCR. Since staying up past midnight was out of the question, this made me think of using the VCR to tape the show.  Our beast of a VCR would suit this purpose, but didn’t have a programmable timer that would signal it to record a show at a certain time. This was a big barrier! I then thought that an alarm clock waking me up at 1 AM to press record on the VCR was one damn good work-around. Yeah, that’s a good idea!

I don’t know how I did it, but I somehow managed to get my mom to agree to let me sleep in the rec room. My plan was to set an alarm clock to go off at 1 AM, so that I would be able to press record on the VCR.  My mom lent me an old mini travel wind-up alarm to help me wake up.

Well, the plan didn’t pan as expected.

Truthfully, I have no idea if the alarm went off or not. All I remember was I woke up with a start, totally disoriented at 4 AM. I missed taping the damn interview. And as much as I willed MuchMusic to re-air the segment with repeated tiny bedtime prayers, I never saw this interview air again. And then I watched it on YouTube the other night. Huzzah!

YouTube happens to be a treasure trove of awesome new-to-me Duran Duran interviews and clips from a bygone era. It’s awesome that there are music fans out there digitizing their VHS tapes of old interviews from the 80s and 90s and posting them to the internet. Thankfully today, technology has advanced to such a degree I won’t have to wait for an interview or music video to air again, and I can stay up as late as I want (not that I would…). How far we have come.

The interview itself was great, by the way. This was around the time everyone in Duran Duran was getting married and having kids – far removed from my Archie Comics headspace at twelve…They talked about very adult business – Andy Taylor screwing them over by leaving mid-way through recording their album, and Roger Taylor’s quiet retirement from the entertainment business. It was very interesting. The three band-members that were left – Simon LeBon, Nick Rhodes and John Taylor – were on their way to a photo shoot and were dressed up for the occasion. Erica Ehm looked very 80s. Check it out:

 

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20 comments

  1. This is a GREAT post! So many memories here…Erica Ehm…the re-run schedule…trying to set a VCR…even staying up late or getting up early to record stuff. I’ve done it too! I didn’t trust the VCR to record stuff, so if it was REALLY important, like say Kiss, I stayed up.

    And look at the great Duran Duran hair!

    Anyway this was a fantastic post and I enjoyed it immensely. Can I relate!!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Here in Tbay as well MM was on ppv as well. For me it was the Pepsi Power Hour! Surprise surprise huh?! Haha…
    YouTube is Awesome for this stuff. Video I recorded on Vhs Is on you tube ..mind blower sometimes what u will find….
    I still like that Powerstation album that the Taylors did….the Duran stuff back than not so much….but hey I did review Andy Taylors Thunder album and it was a decent attempt at Rock …..
    Cool flashback Sarca!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Great story. I saw a documentary on DD quite recently, they seemed pleasant enough, still out there doing it too.

    We didn’t even have an equivalent to Much. Just a couple, maybe even three, weekly music programs – the content of which was random and/or mostly dire. Radio was the medium for me.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hurrah for YouTube! I do like trawling through old clips on there myself. Can get lost for hours, too!

    Haven’t ever seen this clip, but I always find Duran Duran to be really pretty grounded. Interesting bunch, too.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh my god, my mom might still have VHS tapes in her basement that are full of my MM stuff. I’d have my fingers hovering over the RECORD button pretty much every video – just in case.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh man I had a pile of flashbacks, reading this. All so true! Of course, we only had 3 channels until I was about 15 (cable came late to our small pothole of a town) but when we got Much I was all over it.

    Fantastic post. Thanks for the memories! Glad you finally got to see that interview. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Although I wasn’t a fan of Duran Duran (before my time) I know the woes of catching your favourite bands appear on MuchMusic. I missed my favourite band – Moist – on Intimate and Interactive back in the day. I’m sure I managed to see it after the fact, but I remember that missing it at the time was crushing, because Much wasn’t known to re-air I&I that often.

    I’ll have to check YouTube!

    Great read!

    Liked by 1 person

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