Le Bon Voices Fears

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POP AND ROCK GOSSIP with Eddie Rowley eddie.rowley@sundayworld.com

DURAN DURAN singer Simon Le Bon feared he'd never sing again after losing his voice during the summer. Now back on the road and set to play a rescheduled show at The 02 on Tuesday night, Simon tells Shuffle: "It was frightening. But it was only when I went back on tour that I realised just how depressed I became when it happened.

"The state of depression I had got into was due to the fear of losing the thing that defines me, as I see it: being a singer. I'm a father, a husband, a celebrity and I'm involved in sports - but number one I'm a singer.

"When I lost my voice it really made me question my whole worth. What value am I if I can't do that? It was a very challenging thing to face.There was a possibility that that would be the case."

Simon realised that he was in serious trouble during a performance in Cannes, south of France. "I hit high notes a little too hard on "Hungry Like The Wolf" and a whole third of my range was gone for me," he reveals.

"When three weeks passed by and it hadn't improved it really frightened me. I was seeing four doctors, but after a month I went off on a sailing holiday with my family to Croatia. I took a decision to stop worrying about my voice, not try to sing or even think about being in a band.

"When I came back, five notes of the 12 that had gone were back. Then I worked with a fantastic voice therapist, but was three months before I could start rehearsing again with the band.

"It was a wake-up call for me. Now I've changed my diet and exercise and our tour schedule is not as crazy."

Le Bon apologised to fans who were disappointed when Duran Duran had to cancel tour dates at the time, but he promises that there will be lots of thrills in Dublin on Tuesday night.

"The production is great and we've really streamlined ourselves and hit a real rich streak of groove of playing," Simon says.

"One review said that 'Duran Duran play with the kind of expertise that you only get from making a deal with the devil or years and years of practise.' It was such a huge compliment."

Courtesy Sunday World