1981

  • Duran Duran Performs on the Richard Skinner Sessions on BBC

    The band records an appearance on the Richard Skinner Sessions on BBC; they perform “Sound of Thunder,” “Is There Anyone Out There,” “Friends of Mine,” and “Careless Memories.” The BBC later airs a three-minute profile on Duran Duran.

  • Duran Duran Performs at The Sundown Club in London

  • "Planet Earth" hits #12 on the UK charts and #8 on the Australian charts

    Duran Duran’s first single, “Planet Earth” (with B-Side “Late Bar”) is released in UK. The “Planet Earth” single (with B-Side “To The Shore”) is released in America. The band’s first single hits #12 on the UK charts and #8 on the Australian charts.

  • Finn Costello Shoots the Cover for the First Album

  • Duran Duran Begins their First Headlining Tour of the UK

  • Duran Duran Perform on the Music Show, LOOK HEAR!

    In March the band performs “Planet Earth,” “Careless Memories” and “Girls on Film” on the Midlands (UK) music show LOOK HEAR!

  • Duran Duran Performs “Planet Earth” on Noel Edmonds’s Multi-Coloured Swap Shop Saturday TV Show!

  • Duran Duran Performs "Planet Earth" on BBC’s Top of the Pops for the First Time on March 19, 1981

  • Duran Duran Performs More Concerts for Album Release

    Duran Duran supports their album in the UK with concerts at Aston University (Birmingham), Brady’s Club (Liverpool), Manchester Polytechnic, Sundown Club (London), Rock City (Nottingham), Top Rank (Cardiff), Leicester Polytechnic (Leicester) and Top Rank (Sheffield).

  • "Careless Memories" and "Fame"

    In April “Careless Memories” (with B-side “Khanada”) is released in UK; the 12″ single includes a cover of David Bowie’s “Fame.”

  • Duran Duran Performs “Careless Memories” on Top of the Pops

  • In May, Duran Duran Appear on their First Magazine Cover Smash Hits UK

  • Nite Romantics EP

    The Nite Romantics EP is released in Japan, containing Night versions of “Planet Earth” and “Girls On Film” along with “Fame” and “Khanada.”

  • Duran Duran's First North American Club Tour

    Duran Duran flies to America for the first time for their North American Club Tour. The first date of the tour is at Spit in Long Island, NY. Among the tour, stops are 4 performances at the Roxy in Los Angeles and 2 shows at the Ritz in New York City.

  • Duran Duran Debut Released

    The band’s eponymous debut is released worldwide; the first US pressing did not include “To The Shore.”

  • Duran Duran Appears on The Peter Powell Show

    The band appear on The Peter Powell Show on BBC Radio One, performing “Nightboat,” “Girls on Film,” “Is There Anyone Out There” and “Like An Angel.”

  • The Duran Duran Album Peaks at #3 in UK; Remains in the Charts for 118 Weeks

  • The “Faster Than Light” Tour

    The band begins the “Faster Than Light” tour of the UK with dates that include the Brighton Dome, Gaumont (Southampton), Rock City (Nottingham), Apollo (Manchester), City Hall (Newcastle), Tiffany’s (Glasgow), Odeon (Edinburgh), Royal Court Theatre (Liverpool), Hammersmith Odeon (London), New Theatre (Oxford) and the Birmingham Odeon.

  • The “Girls on Film” Single (with B-Side “Faster Than Light”) is Released Worldwide in July

  • Duran Duran Makes a Third Appearance on Top of the Pops, Performing “Girls on Film"

  • “Girls on Film” Music Video

    The band films the “Girls on Film” video at Shepperton Studios on August 13th with directors Kevin Godley and Lol Crème; Antony Price designs the clothing the band wears in the video. The song becomes the world’s first extended video, edited to the Night Version of the song. Due to it’s “x-rated” content, the video is banned by both MTV and the BBC.

  • Duran Duran Performs in Belgium, France, Sweden, Netherlands and Germany

    Duran Duran begins International promotion to support their first record, visiting and performing in Belgium, France, Sweden, Netherlands and Germany. Busloads of fans from the UK came to support the band on their date in Paris.

  • WLIR on Long Island Become the First US Station to Play Duran Duran

  • Duran Duran Headlines their First North American Tour

    Duran Duran flies to America in September for their first headline tour of North America. Dates include The Channel (Boston), Bayou Theatre (Washington, DC), Eastside Club (Philadelphia), Le Club Montreal, El Macambo (Toronto), First Avenue (Minnesota), Parkwest (Chicago), The Metro (Boston), Nitro (Detroit), Pirate’s Cove (Cleveland), Park West (Chicago), I Beam (San Francisco), Peppermint Lounge (New York City) and Danceteria (New York City)

  • Andy Warhol Brings Duran Duran to The Factory

  • Andy Warhol Takes Duran Duran to Studio 54

    Duran Duran performs at the Underground Club at The Savoy, New York City. Andy Warhol attends. He later takes the band to Studio 54.

  • The Band do a Record Signing at Vinyl Fetish in Hollywood, CA

  • Simon, Nick, John & Roger do an Interview with Rodney Bingenheimer on KROQ radio, Los Angeles

  • Duran Duran Meet with MTV

    Before leaving America, Duran Duran visits with MTV, who had a staff of 16 people at the time. They discuss airing their videos and future programming ideas.

  • Duran Duran Begins Headlining Tour of Germany

    Duran Duran begins their first headlining tour of Germany; dates included Die Wartburg (Wiesbaden), Markthalle (Hamburg), Ballroom Blitz (Hannover), Kant Kino (Berlin) and more.

  • EMI Presents Duran Duran with Gold and Silver Discs in Recognition of Sales for the Duran Duran Album

  • "My Own Way” is Released

    The “My Own Way” single (with B-Side “Like An Angel”) is released as a stand-alone single worldwide, (ex-US) in November. The single was designed to capitalize on the Top 5 success of “Girls on Film.” The 7″ single and 12” versions were recorded in October 1981 with Colin Thurston, well before the rest of the Rio album, where the song would later appear. “My Own Way” was another hit, reaching #14 on the UK Singles Chart, and in Australia, where it became Duran Duran’s second Top 10 hit at #10. Malcolm Garrett and Peter Saville designed the cover artwork.

  • The Band Performs “Girls on Film” on Rock Pop Germany

  • Duran Duran Performs at the Chichester Festival. The Performance is Filmed for Television.

  • The “Careless Memories Tour”’ Begins at Gaumont, Southampton, England

    November 29, 1981
  • Duran Duran Performs “My Own Way” on Top of the Pops

  • Duran Duran Performs at Hammersmith Odeon, London and Odeon, Birmingham

    The band ends the year at home in England with performances at Hammersmith Odeon, London and 3 shows with band Talk Talk supporting at the Odeon, Birmingham.

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