Laura Loving Loves Simon Le Bon
In case you were wondering what kind of people were at the Duran Duran concert Tuesday night in Brooklyn, I am here to tell you that you’re looking at her. Me. I am the demographic that headed to Brooklyn in droves. I am the demographic that spiked the Manhattan babysitter economy, the sales of Champagne and the uptick in Uber requests about 11:30 pm Tuesday night. It was me… me and about 15,000 of my direct peers.
I was pumped from the moment I bought the ticket. Adult concerts are just not in the cards these days. Work and parenthood don’t leave much time for evenings out on the town. I was making an exception. Duran Duran was different. This band was part of the soundtrack of my teens. Fond memories of my youth are attached to these men and their music. Seeing their shows has always made me feel so good. Duran Duran makes me happy and happiness is worth the effort.
I dropped my daughter off at the babysitter's house and headed for the subway. On the way, I called my best friend to tell him that I was going to see Duran Duran. He was not exactly a fan. I had dragged him to a concert in 2007. We reminisced how fun it had been and how the boys had rocked the whole velvet jacket 80's thing again and pink hair before pink hair had made its comeback. As we hung up the phone, his last words were, “I wonder if Simon is still fat? He was getting pretty chubby the last time I saw him.” I laughed at the question and immediately defended my crush. “We ladies like our men to be a little chubby around the middle. That’s how we know they’re straight.”
I met my friends M and T at a restaurant right across from Barclays Center for a quick bite before the show. We were trippin on nostalgia over Champagne and Caprese. I told a story about seeing Duran Duran for the first time at 14 years old at the Omni in Atlanta and how I dragged my husband to see them in Central Park a few years ago. M shared that at her first Duran Duran concert she was so overtaken with admiration for John Taylor that she rushed the stage and threw her lipstick at him. T had been to a few concerts as well and was disturbed the last time she had seen them in the UK. T thought she noticed that Simon has had plastic surgery. What? I was having a hard time swallowing that one.
I had not even arrived at the concert and I had already heard several ageist comments against my beloved Simon. Earlier, I had to delete a few jabs from my Facebook post about going to the concert. Was it possible that men of a certain age were starting to experience some of the same %$# as their female peers?
As we entered through security at Barclays, I was in awe of the crowd. It was like looking in a mirror. I had not been around that many people my own age in a long time. Like us, some ladies were having girls night and some ladies had brought their husbands against their will. There were also quite a few gay men representing. I confess that one of my initial thoughts was that I wish I had a way to capture everyone’s email address. These were my people.
The atmosphere was electric with good vibes. Everyone was there to have fun. We took our seats. There was a tangible comradery and total strangers were talking to each other about what songs they wished they would play and their favorite Duran Duran memories.
Suddenly, the lights went out. Everyone went crazy. Sophisticated grown women started whooping and hollering like teenagers. Duran Duran took the stage and opened with a few minutes of a new song that transitioned into Wild Boys.
Simon is still a peacock with total confidence and swagger. Yes, he has a bit of a Dad Bod, but he totally owns it. Frankly, I find it sexy. I’m not a fan of perfect and Dad Bods are symbolic of a man that might actually be working on being a dad and a partner versus spending 24 hours at a gym or chasing women. John Taylor is the image of fit over 50. He is still the favorite based on the reactions from the crowd. Nick Rhodes is still awesome and totally weird and weird doesn’t really age. One of the Taylors is missing (Andy) and Roger Taylor looked pretty much the same sitting behind the drums.
The hits started coming: Hungry like the Wolf, A View to a Kill and Come Undone. During Come Undone, I was immediately taken by the visuals on the large screen behind the band. They were showing a montage of beautiful women pleasuring themselves. “Read the room guys!” I thought to myself. Then I glanced to my right and noticed that one of the husbands had perked up suddenly and was now paying attention to the show. Duran Duran hadn’t missed a thing. They totally read the room.
A few special guests joined the stage during the night. Niles Rogers was there to play with them on Notorious and one of their new songs that he produced. The Canadian pop star called Kiesza joined the band for one of their collaborative songs. I had no idea who she was. Neither did anyone sitting in our section. We had to google her. Next, Lindsay Lohan came out and sang with them. I didn’t get her involvement at all. Not bad, just odd. Their set ended with Rio and Save a Prayer. Well done, boys!
To the ageist critics who whispered in my ear before the concert, I would like to defend my imaginary boyfriend Simon Le Bon and his band of merry men. The beauty of the boys in Duran Duran is merely a bonus. They are actually an excellent rock band disguised as total studs. Their amazing catalog of songs still fills stadiums after all these years.
Yes, the members of Duran Duran are no longer 25 and neither are we my friends. Time is a thief and too bad you didn’t join us in Brooklyn where time stood still. For 1 hour and 34 minutes we were all 14 again and Simon and the boys were totally 25. We all left with a lightness of foot and giddy school girl joy in our hearts. All 15,000 of us. Music is magic. There is no other way to say it. Tripping on nostalgia is a wonderful way to spend an evening. Thank you Duran Duran, “You make me feel alive,alive alive.”