Guest Post and Photos By Else “Evil E” Duff
I never bought a Duran Duran record but do I remember when “Rio” came out, my friends were losing their minds. I certainly liked it but not enough to buy it. I was way into Van Halen and my heart belonged to Eddie. So when it was announced that Duran Duran was doing 3 shows at the Hollywood Bowl I was intrigued, yet not really enthusiastic. A friend since Junior High informed me she would be coming in town for the show, so when another friend asked on The Facebook if anyone was going to the show, I responded something like “I’ll go if you want to go for the cheapest seats.” She responded, “Fuck it. Girls gone mild.” Right on! Couldn’t go without my trusty concert buddy Su so I got 3 tickets in section W2.
Nile Rodgers and Chic was the opener and I was pretty excited to see them. But there was an unexpected act on the bill and that was Hurricane Kay. So grateful for rain especially with the L.A. heatwave, but everything indicated the wet remainder of Kay would be hitting at the earliest on our walk home from the Bowl. Funny thing about weather, gonna do what it wants whether you think you got it figured out or not. Late afternoon drizzle had subsided but I brought my umbrella just in case I needed it on the way home. I must have jinxed Su because she had to cancel. But I still had my dear friend Maul’r and we were ready to get moderately enthused.
Lines were insane upon arrival and we just kept going up the side to higher gates hoping to get a break. We ended up by the umbrella check-in and when I realized I couldn’t bring it in I got in line. My husband made use of Su’s ticket and was trying to encourage me to abandon it as Nile Rodgers and Chic were about to start playing. But you see it wasn’t just any umbrella, it was my Days Of Our Lives umbrella and that day was also the same day as the last episode airing on broadcast television before moving to streaming. The end of an era, because I have been a diehard Days fan since I was a kid. It’s been a staple throughout my life and it hasn’t been easy. I have seen some REALLY dumb shit yet stayed loyal. I do not plan to watch it on streaming, I am cutting the cord and taking my life back! But I ain’t giving up my damn Days umbrella.
We finally get in and start the long journey upwards to W2. It looked like many had carefully curated their outfits well in advance. I was so busy all day I just threw on jeans, a pair of Asics, my “Hoes Before Embryos” shirt and grabbed a hoodie and headed out. That shirt usually requires photos by strangers when they see it which I didn’t really take into consideration being that we were running late. It was just the first t-shirt I saw when I was rushing to get dressed. “No, it’s okay you can include my face in the picture. I don’t care who sees me wearing this. I just gotta keep moving.”
It was a trek to W2 and the occasional sprinkles turned into a drizzle. But Niles Rodgers and Chic definitely cheered us up. Damn, did they sound incredible. And the energy that came all the way up to W2 was infectious. They were amazing!! One of my favorite parts was “Get Lucky” which was Rodgers’ collaboration with Daft Punk. But it was “Good Times” that brought me back to Junior High and the roller rink. Down in the promenade section, even though she bought garden seats and then paid for an upgrade to the pool section, was my friend since Junior High and she was pissed. Stubhub screwed her hard and her parade was literally being rained on while she spent the whole part of Chic on the phone getting a very ‘oh well’ response from the internet scalper. That’s the thing with W2, you just sorta care.
When Duran Duran hit the stage, Maul’r and I looked at them as we quietly contemplated our levels of interest. Then we just started talking. Yes, we were THOSE people. Although at first it was just trying to decide if they were playing a new song or a deep cut. Maul’r noticed the difference in dancing around us. Anything old – Hell yeah there was dancing. Anything new – If someone was standing there might be a light sway. We wondered if there would be a song that would inspire us to dance or even just stand-up. “Girls on Film” perhaps?
I sent my friend Su a picture as she requested. But I didn’t even attempt to zoom in, just snap, send and here’s your picture. She knew I was just being a dick. Best I could tell they all looked great and I did have to ‘tee hee hee” anytime John Taylor was on the screen. And they sounded great. Everything was great, except the rain. About 50 minutes in I was soaked and had instigated periodic enthusiasm checks. We’re in W2 and we really didn’t have much to lose. They played “Come Undone” and it was so beautiful and dreamy that I felt that was gonna be the high water mark for me, at least music wise. It’s when Maul’r requested a sudden enthusiasm check that I knew it was time. As we started the long trek down and out, they launched into “Girls on Film” which was perfect timing. Because we were “Girls on Stairs” which was the perfect place to not see a band you’re just moderately interested in.
We found our way back to the umbrella check-in and I tried to wait patiently for my turn to retrieve my Days Of Our Lives umbrella that I could see right in front of me but couldn’t just grab even though it was right there like right there. It was finally returned to me and I tipped and got a very sweet “thank you, Mama” as my husband was searching for abandoned umbrellas and rescued a pretty sweet one. Grabbed a 5 buck bootleg long-sleeve shirt on the way out and watched the fireworks by the sign at the entrance. Managed to also retrieve my friend since Junior High and we all headed down Highland. I was so soaked I didn’t even bother with the umbrella walking home but I sure did wonder what the hell they do with all the ones people throw out.