An Interview with John Taylor (Duran Duran plays Oct. 13)

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An interview with John Taylor (Duran Duran plays Oct. 13)
Tickets still available for St. Augustine Amphitheatre concert
Posted: October 10, 2011 - 9:05am

Duran Duran plays Oct. 13 in the St. Augustine Amphitheatre.


Duran Duran performs with Neon Trees on Thursday, Oct. 13 at the Amphitheatre. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. and show starts at 7 p.m. Tickets are $49.50, $59.50, $69.50, $89 and $125

To say Duran Duran is a band of legends is an understatement.

The group, which formed in Birmingham, England in 1978, has sold more than 100 million records, had 18 American hit singles, won two Grammy Awards and helped transform the music video industry to feature big budget films with narrative storylines and exotic locations.

The current line-up is Simon Le Bon (vocals), Nick Rhodes (keyboard), John Taylor (bass guitar) and — no relation — Roger Taylor (drums). The band’s latest and 13th album, “All You Need Is Now,” was released in March on S-Curve Records.

The guys make a stop at the Amphitheatre next Thursday to play new tunes and old hits. Compass caught up with bassist, Taylor:

Compass: How’s the tour going?

John Taylor: Well, it’s going. It’s going. (laughs) We had such a f*&$%ed up summer and we’re really just starting to get our groove on. Simon’s (Le Bon) just right on top of his fitness and it’s really starting to gel. So it’s exciting, you know? You live for it.

Compass: In a recent review of your Las Vegas show at the Hard Rock Hotel, a Las Vegas Sun writer says, “Taylor is still a heartthrob, his frame slender and his head full of the signature long hair, although more blonde-white now.” Tell me a bit about what it’s like to be a “heartthrob” — sounds stressful.

J.T.: (laughs) I don’t find it stressful at all actually. Not any more. It’s a beautiful thing. I’m happy to be of service. Look, I’m OK with who I am ... I mean I don’t think any of us thought we were going to be a pop group. We sort of had a little bit more cultish in mind. We were into darker music and we became pop stars. We became a pop group that girls were screaming at and they couldn’t get enough pictures of us. It was strange, extraordinary and amazing. It wasn’t what we planned for.

Compass: Are there some modern acts that you listen to or really respect right now?

J.T.: Hmmmmm ... good question. I listen to so much music. I’m a bass player and the great bass players – the great rhythm sections – are mostly in the past it seems. For me, for ultimate inspiration, I tend to go back to the ‘70s.

Compass: Tell me a bit about the video for “Girl Panic !” that features supermodels Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford, Eva Herzigova, Helena Christensen, and Yasmin Le Bon.

J.T.: Ahhhh ... well, it was Nick’s (Rhodes) idea that it would be really great if we could just get some supermodels to play us. We connected with Jonas Akerlund who is famous for big, high concept music videos. He did [Lady] Gaga’s video with Beyonce — I think that’s perhaps his most famous piece. We connected with him and once he got on board, it became an extravaganza. I think it’s going to be the most talked about video of the year when it drops in November.

Courtesy Compass