Who Needs The Olympic Ceremonies? Duran Duran Chilled in Tucson
Where we're going, we don't need roads; just a synthesizer, eyeliner, and a touch of androgyny. Welcome to Flashback Friday.
London concluded the 2012 Olympic Games with a musical menagerie that celebrated Britain's music legacy Sunday night. In case you missed it, the closing ceremony was infused with a smattering of cordial elegance and theatrical flair as well as tributes to John Lennon, David Bowie, and Freddie Mercury.
A real-time live stream was made available online, but we caught the NBC delayed broadcast that aired in two parts. The beleaguered network has been ridiculed for its disastrous missteps while covering the 30th Olympiad, and likely gave critics more fuel by cutting out The Kinks' Ray Davies' performance of 'Waterloo Sunset" and then airing The Who's closing set after an hour break.
Madness performed. As did the Pet Shop Boys and George Michael, but we want to know: Where was Duran Duran?
With a ceremony geared at showcasing Britain's greatest bands, the boys from Birmingham should have been a shoo-in to perform. They even have the perfect song for the transition to the next Olympic host city.
Well, as it turns out, they were actually performing just a few miles away from us at Casino Del Sol in Tucson. So for those of us that couldn't make the show, let's enjoy some favorites from the chic pop rockers starting with "Rio," off of the 1982 classic album with the same name.
As is tradition, the Olympic flag was passed on to organizers of the 2016 Games taking place in Rio de Janeiro. There was even an eight-minute grandstand, giving viewers a glimpse of what they can expect when the Brazilian city becomes the first South American city to host the Olympics. Sure, the band might not be actually singing about the same Rio, but come on, it totally works.
Rio also yielded a couple of other catchy tracks. Twenty years later, it's almost impossible to not want to dance to the grooving guitar and wavy synth intro to "Hungry Like the Wolf."
And while Duran Duran was mostly known for its pop sensibility, slower more brooding tracks like "The Chauffeur" made them a champion in the New Romantic era of the '80s. The Deftones 2005 cover off of B-Sides and Rarities remains one of my favorite covers of all time.