October 29, 2012- John Taylor’s “Into the Pleasure Groove” Book Signing -Chapters/ Indigo, Toronto. Canada
**First, I would to thank http://www.duranduran.com/ for re-tweeting my article and http://duranduranboard.proboards.com for posting my article on your message board!!… I’ve never had so many hits in one day!! *
If you have told me 2 years ago when I had my stroke, that I was going to meet my idol, John Taylor, I would have told you, that you must be smoking something. When at that time the only thing on my mind at that moment was hoping that I would make it through this. Something like that was the last thing on my mind. Getting my speech back was my priority.
Until…Oct. 29, 2012. Holy shit! Could this be happening? Thank You Lord! I have lived to see this day! I finally have met my idol, John Taylor! Fuckin pinch me already!
This was a “Perfect Day“, an iconic day, a memorable day that will be engraved in my heart for as long as I live. Words cannot describe what this day felt to me and to all the Duranies who were anxiously waiting for the arrival of the divine JT, who was scheduled to appear at Chapters/Indigo @ 7pm.
I had been up since 7am, getting ready to get to Chapters by 9:30am.I
know, I know, its crazy right? But who cares! Being there earlier had its rewards in the end, believe me!
My dad thought I was koo-koo for being there that early, whatever dad. Maybe I couldn’t do anything about having to remove my 50 John Taylor posters off my bedroom walls back when I was 16, so you could paint my room pink! So girlie. I’m older now and nothing was going to stop this Duranie.
When I arrived at 9:30, the store was quiet. The staff directed me to the children’s section, where the line ups were starting, in between the bookcases; I was probably the 12th person already there. My first mission was accomplished, getting a good spot. Phew! Now I can relax.
During my 10 hours of waiting, I got acquainted with some wonderful, fun-loving Duranies, Nicole, Lori, Sheri, Tammy, Ally, Christie and the hilarious & energetic twins, Dawn & Doreen (sorry if I missed anyone). All these ladies made my time go fast. It was all about spending that time talking and reminiscing about Duran and JT. No worries about anything, plus, Toronto was safe from hurricane Sandy
Dawn, the sweet, gray haired (some what like “Richard Gere“, so John said to her. Lol), LOVES JT, she has him in her heart. And Doreen, in her Rio T-shirt, is a fan of Duran, but was there for her sister, but yet doesn’t want to miss this opportunity. One interesting thing about the twins is that they’re in The Reflex video, filmed in our Toronto Maple Leaf Gardens. These two are hard coreDuranies! And lots of fun to hang around with. I’m so jealous that they were at that concert in 1984; too young, according to dad.One thing, coincidentally , Doreen had the RIO t-shirt & I, the RIO ring on my finger that I bought at a Craft show plus we had the same kind of wedding rings, but hers was ginormous! What are the chances of that happening?
My Duran story was when I met the band back in 1995 in a tent at the back of HMV, we took photos, shook hands with the band, gave kisses, I, especially to JT. John actually complimented my cousin’s perfume, Dolce & Gabanna. She still talks about it until this day.
Sitting at the end of the band’s table was Simon LeBon. All I remember was a short dark-haired LeBon wearing a beige jacket & jeans, plus those gorgeous blue eyes that could put you in a trance! The conversation I had with Simon was about the line he made in the “Sing Blue Silver ” DVD. In the video, he says “Gimme a wristband!”! Taking a chance, I said that line to him, but got a reply like, “What? You’ve lost your wristband?” in his super sexy British accent. I don’t think that he had any clue what I was talking about…Boy I felt like an idiot. I’m very shy when I meet famous people & I think John noticed it this time.
I think I felt more intimidated by JT, than I was for Simon. I don’t know why; maybe that’s why I hardly said anything. And I don’t think I’ll ever have that opportunity again; that’s what bums me out.
It was 2h left until the man of the hour was to arrive, so the staff came around to place a sticky note in our books with our names on it, so there’s no confusion for JT on how to spell our names; and we were off to get seated.
Since I was in the first line up, we were placed in the first two rows; me in the front, YAY! Another mission accomplished!
The atmosphere at this point was energizing, Duran Duran fever everywhere! The anticipation was overwhelming; you can feel the love for John in the room. I’d say that there were at least 90% of us women around. The fans were probably in the ages of 40 and up, including me. As we sat anxiously waiting, the speakers were playing Duran Duran songs, from old to new, which got the crowd going, from singing, cheering & some dancing, this was a moment to remember. All us Duranies, all grown up & still devoted to the band, that’s what I call commitment! There’s nothing like T.O fans either!
There was a point when I had to go to the ladies room, don’t want to be in that situation where I have to go pee while the interview was going on. I grabbed a friend to come with me (there’s a point this, I promise). As we approached the ladies room, Marty says: “Do you know who’s in that room now?”… She’s talking about the Chapters “Green Room”, next door to the bathroom. ME: “You’re kidding? How do you know?” MARTY: “I just saw his manager go inside!” ME: “Holy Shit!”… I had to pee fast!
When we were finished doing our business, I went to the Green Room door and put face to the glass and yelled out, “JOHNNY!!” And we took off!!
The stage is set & the time is near, the man of the hour is soon arriving. The temperature is rising & the cheers get louder & louder the man has arrived, JT is in the house!!
John entered with host Liza Fromer from the Morning Show on Global TV.
The fans kept screaming as they were getting settled. John looked as handsome as ever, aging very well, I must say. He wore a black blazer, white shirt & black pants along with beige shoes, sitting ever so proper with crossed legs.
I’ll try to sum up the interview as best as I can because of my short-term memory. Some of it is by memory & some by 2 videos I took, which I took some information from that.
This next information wasn’t quite said in this interview, but I saw it on video with Absolute Radio http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=27QHPolyeHw. John had chosen to make this book for a few reasons first it was to take it on a personal level because he had lost his father a few years ago, but it was a way to grieve the loss of both his parents. It’s also John’s connection with Birmingham, the Midlands & Suburbs that he grew up in. And his own view of what the first 5 years of Duran were like in the ‘80’s. Finally the book would go into his sobriety, second marriage, the passing of his parents and a mention of his step children.
Some questions were asked from the audience, which ended up being about 500 people. I don’t remember all that was asked, but there’s a couple that does stick to my mind.
One lady asked him how he remembered everything from his past, and he mentioned that some of it was a diary that he found; the other was just facts from “wiki”.
John knew that if he were to write a memoir, he was going to have to commit to saying “yes, I did say that, yes I did do that”. Once he would go public with this, there was no turning back.
John would go on giving an example, which got me cracking up. He compared it to dying the hair. When your hair goes grey, once it’s there, you can’t go back to dying the hair.
My fellow Duranie, Dawn got the mic in her hands & before asking him her question, made a comment, “Grey hair is good BTW John”.
JOHN: “It’s so Richard Gere!” directing it to Dawn, who has grey hair. Which is gorgeous,BTW!
DAWN: “I Love You BTW, John”. She had been dying to tell him that ALL day & certainly all her life!
DAWN: “What’s on John Taylor’s Bucket List?”
Here’s what JT came up with, as far John Taylor’s Bucket List:
- Never ridden on racetrack before. He would like to drive on that racetrack at extremely high speeds. But…he would like to live a long time.
- Thinking about getting into boxing- no one’s ever really punched him squarely in the face, but for some strange reason, he wants to get into the ring with someone & do that. Then jokingly says “maybe I should do it with girls”!
- This part of the bucket list, was the cutest part of the day, I’m glad I have this on video. Can you picture JT “Tap Dancing?” While in Europe, John was in a meeting, and there was a tap dancing class going on in the next room. He says “Man, I Fuckin’ love tap dancing!” He then calls his wife Gela to tell her that he wants to take up tap dancing! Her answer seemed to be a long pause. JOHN: “I think taking up tap dancing would equal…DIVORCE…” He says “that’s not going to happen. It’s on my VERY private Bucket List.”
John did read a couple of chapters, I do remember the first reading was the First Chapter, “Hey Jude”, which is about his experiences as a young boy going to church almost every day with his parents. He is definitely soothing to the ear. Please read me a lullaby, John?
Now on to the part when I met Mr.Taylor himself. Since I was in the first row, I was the first person to get her book signed. After a full day of waiting and anticipating what I was going to say to my idol, I got up to the stage and I think I froze. Not that I’m complaining about being the first one, but I felt the pressure by all the commotion around me, felt like the spotlight was on me. If I had a people in front of me, I would’ve had a better feel of what people’s actions were.
I wouldn’t say that I was “nervous”, I have met him & the band before. But what was it this time that made it so surreal? Was it the fact that only “I” was up there with him & that it was a more intimate kind of situation? Or maybe I’m just shy? Like I said before, there was some kind of intimidation about JT that I didn’t get from Simon. I guess Simon had that approachable feel about him, whereas, JT seemed unpredictable. Believe it nor not, I was afraid to of some kind of sarcasm from him. Maybe I’m reading into this too much.
Standing in front of him, seemed like an illusion to me; Please pinch me, am I dreaming? When I placed the book on the table, this was the conversation:
ME: Hi There! How are You?
JT: Very well, thanks…
As he signed the book and looking down, it was….
JT: So are you a native of Toronto?
ME: Yes…I am
My next thought was, “SHIT” come on, say something else, stupid! Now’s your opportunity to tell him something you’ve always wanted to say! Show him the RIO ring on your finger! I couldn’t get my hand up to show him! And I wasn’t having a stroke again either…How are you supposed to know the time limits to these things? Beats the shit of me! All I knew was that, I royally fucked up, and that was that. I will never have this opportunity again!
JT gave me back the book and said, “thank you” and ME: “Thanks”. I didn’t even shake his hand! He probably thought, “That was the fastest book I signed in this whole bloody tour!”…I didn’t even get him to see that I at least have sense of humor.
I can’t have any regrets about what happened, I met my idol & got my book signed. All I have are memories of that day, from beginning to the end.
But if I could turn back the clock, these are the things I might have said:
- Did you know that I’ve been a fan of yours since I was 12?
- Did you know I’ve dreamt about working for Duran Duran (I’m not a singer). Ha! Now would be a good time since I haven’t been working since the stroke.
- (One thing I do regret, is not showing him my RIO ring)
- I bought this RIO ring at a craft show, got lots of compliments on it. I didn’t make it, but it’s not hard to make myself; maybe different album covers?
- I met you guys back in 1995. It’s an honor to meet you again.
This next one would have been the one I’ve chosen to say. John mentioned that music can pull you through the hard times.
- Your music has helped me through the most difficult times in my life, especially recovering from my stroke.
Over all Oct,29/12 was very special. It was a day to get acquainted with other Duranies, which Iam now friends with on Facebook. It brought me back to the ‘80’s, which was an era that I enjoyed being a part of and if it wasn’t for the making of Duran Duran, the ‘80’s wouldn’t be the same.
My message to JT:
“Thank You” for creating such an amazing band … I’m so happy that I was part of that generation.
“Thank You” for being who you are, a genuine, kind & a charismatic human being. It’s that charm that always had this girl’s heart fluttering from the time you were 20 until now. I can tell that your parents brought you up well; you have an angel’s presence about you. And I’m sure, they were very proud of what you have accomplished in your life.
This Duranie hopes that you will continue making beautiful music, until you can no longer make music. And one most important thing…think again about your bucket list…I like it..BUT, it sounds crazy…but.. DO try to take up “tap dancing”, because..I “fuckin love tap dancing too”!.
Toronto Loves You!!
Come back again, soon. :)
- Duran Duran’s John Taylor Gets “In The Pleasure Groove” (mix1051.cbslocal.com)
- Duran Duran – Duran Duran Take A Break Until 2013 (contactmusic.com)