What’s your favorite Duran Duran song? The track that was the game-changer… You heard it once and knew you were hooked! For me it was “Rio.” For Duran Duran archivist Andrew Golub, it was “The Reflex”. One listen, and he was a devoted fan. In fact, Andrew, known as Durandy, has been collecting paper-based Duran Duran ephemera for more than 2o years. He’s amassed the largest Duran Duran archive in the world, which includes over 1,500 posters, more than 10,000 pages of magazine articles, 150 books, and memorabilia such as a board game, a briefcase and a zippered purse. Ready to see the collection? Now you can, thanks to Golub’s recent publication, a coffee table book titled Beautiful Colors: The Posters of Duran Duran.
In honor of ’80s Fashion Week at Mirror80, today we spotlight the role of fashion in the realm of 1980s music video. Thanks to the advent of MTV in 1981, musicians had a new outlet for creativity, and they quickly filled the screen with the latest styles. A variety of looks emerged… Today we showcase a handful of them, as well as the music videos in which they appeared.
I spent the evening of October 26th at Austin, Texas’ Scottish Rite Theatre, a historic site that manages to be grand yet intimate. Nearly every seat in the house was packed. To my right, a group of 10 women in their thirties squealed like school girls while passing around a picture of Duran Duran bassist John Taylor, who would be taking the stage within the next few minutes. Yes, it was a speaking engagement and book signing to celebrate the release of Taylor’s memoir In the Pleasure Groove: Love, Death & Duran Duran. As its title suggests, this book is as much about life as it is about John Taylor’s days with the band. And for me, the evening of October 26th was as much about reflecting on creativity and the passage of time as it was about seeing one of my childhood idols in person.
Music videos from the 1980s sure were all over the place! I was recently watching my old VHS tape of videos I’d recorded as a pre-teen, and it dawned on me that music videos from this time period represented a huge variety of approaches and technological levels. This new medium of entertainment ushered in an exciting era of artistic expression. People were still trying to figure it all out. Some bands simply sang in front of a blank white screen, while others pioneered the latest in special effects. Some rented a smoke machine and hit “record.” Others acted out elaborate stories, treating each piece as a three-minute short film. And that’s why ’80s music videos are so magical…
Has your Wednesday been a little crazy? I know, me too. Don’t worry–we’ve got the cure. A heavy dose of backlighting will make your problems fade away. At least, that was a common tactic in many a 1980s music video. In fact, it seemed like a divine light was perpetually shining down on many of our musical heroes. Not only did it give them a healthy glow, it added a hazy effect that at times was just what the doctor ordered. Who needs clarity anyway?