Simon Le Bon learned to ‘treasure new music’ via COVID Radio Gig

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Simon Le Bon said his role as co-host of SiriusXM during the lockdown helped him learn to appreciate new music more than he had in years.

Not only did the Duran singer Duran experience a renewed enjoyment of music in general, but it also inspired some of the ideas that appear on the band’s latest album, Future Pastas he said to Tribune of the Stars in a recent interview.

“It really opened up my horizons. I really cherish new music now,” Le Bon said of his Whooosh! show, which he presented alongside Katy Krassner, and which started as a private venture before SiriusXM got involved. “It took a few skins off my musical sensibility. I enjoy music more. I bring some of these ideas into the world of Duran Duran. I owe a lot of the sounds on the track ‘Future Past’ to my obsession with a Tame Impala track remixed by Four Tet. Big, bold synthesizer sounds.

The experience also increased his appreciation for his bandmates. “We’re bonded by the fact that the four of us are much more creative than if the four of us were working alone,” he explained. “We like working together. We inspire each other. We surprise each other. We like each other. When we’re not on tour, we see each other socially. We have developed a real respect for each other over the years.

Le Bon explained how Duran Duran benefited from making memorable videos to accompany their singles at the start of the MTV era. “There was a kind of self-awareness and encampment in a lot of [other promos],” he said. “But you could still see they were acting. Whereas when we were doing something like ‘Hungry Like the Wolf,’ I was able to do that kind of The Raiders of the Lost Ark character and look like I thought. I think that’s been a big part of our success with videos.

And as he described the band’s upcoming induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as “the closest thing to rock ‘n’ roll chivalry”, the singer noted that Duran Duran is keeping his feet on the ground. “We play for royalty,” he said, referring to their recent performance to mark 70 years of Queen Elizabeth II on the British throne. “That doesn’t make us kings.”

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