Nardwuar vs. John Taylor of Duran Duran

Nardwuar:What did you play on Miami Vice? You were on Miami Vice, weren't you?
John Taylor:Um, Power Station, which was a band I was in for a year, made an appearance. It was a deal we did with Don Johnson. Don had wanted to sing with the band, so when we played Miami, he got up and sang a number and quid pro quo we got to go on an episode. We were playing in a bar. I think I got a line but I don't remember what it was.

Did you get to meet Jan Hammer at all?
People really respect you playing in Duran Duran. I was talking to some metal heads, I remember, a long time ago, and they were like, "All the other members of Duran Duran, they were kind of fakers with their instruments." But they loved you, John, because they would say, "He's an incredible bass player." Did you ever get that from people? Like, "We love your bass playing, but the other guys...." What sort of, did you feel a sort of an obligation, of having to hold it up, like, "My other band...." The metal guys really identified with you!
Well, that wasn't something that I was aware of at the time. I think in Duran Duran, we just all grew together. I think there was always something in the music that was always very credible, and perhaps for some reason they just identified with me because perhaps they found Simon or Nick's image perhaps a little harder to get around.

Some people thought that Simon Le Bon had kind of a Van Morrison complex, like he was an amazing singer but, you know, he didn't honestly look quite as hot as you there!
Well, you know, he did a lot of things that I couldn't have done, so, you know.....

People really liked John Taylor. Mr. Eye-Liner!

They really liked you! The metal guys liked you. The girls liked you. You kind of were Duran Duran, so now that you've left the band, you must be picking up a lot of fans with this solo record. What do you think, John Taylor, that, say, Robert Smith wore so much make-up?
Um, well, I think it was a kind of a milli.... it's kind of a goth... Pierot. It has its tradition. It's sort of a traditional kind of thing, isn't it?

Now, on your new LP, it is a very painful and cleansing record, isn't it? What do you think about what you're wearing? You're wearing a vest that exposes quite nicely your beautiful, shall I say, shag carpet chest! But on a promo pic, you're wearing a suit. What's the difference between the two pictures?
Oh, a jacket, it sounds like. It sounds like the difference is a jacket and shirt.

You're quite photogenic, aren't you?

When you were in Duran Duran, weren't you in a Oui magazine a long time ago?
A long time ago.

What was that like? Were you in a Speedo in Oui magazine?
No, not me, baby.
You like my body, you think I'm sexy What was Steve Jones' house like? You were in the Neurotic Outsiders with him. I was watching that History of Rock 'n' Roll thing. Did you see the History of Rock 'n' Roll thing? And there was a thing on punk and there was Steve Jones standing and there was a really big swimming pool in the background. Is that where he lives in LA?
No. No. No. Steve has just bought a house with a swimming pool after that Sex Pistols reunion tour. That's just what he has been doing, but that wouldn't be.... Wherever that was filmed, that wouldn't be his house. Steve is one guy who didn't get a great deal of reward for the influence that he made, the musical influence that he had.
What was the closest do you think you got, John Taylor, perhaps to an underage disaster? There was actually something in NME that said something about the Sneaker Pimps. Do you know the band the Sneaker Pimps from England?

It said that while they were in LA, while they were partying in LA with Duran Duran, they "bore witness to unprintable debauchery involving sex, drugs and married celebrities who should know better." This is the Sneaker Pimps. Have any of your old, say, groupies or fans formed bands and are like, "Hey, I remember you guys from hanging around" before?
Mmmm. Ummmmm.

Like, the Sneaker Pimps! What was...
I don't know. Let me think about that. That is news to me.

The bore witness to unprintable...

Not with me, they didn't.

...involving sex, drugs and married celebrities who should know better...
Mmm. Yeah.

And speaking about debauchery there, John Taylor, what do you think about "Girls on Film"? Was that a "soapy tit wank video" as Viz magazine has commented?
(laughs) Umm, it was just a desperate attempt at cheap publicity...

What do you think about...
And in that respect, it succeeded quite admirably, I thought.

And we have a caller! Right now, we have a caller. Are you there?
Caller: Yeah, I'm here. Do you know the "Rio" boat? The boat in the "Rio" video?

Caller: (silence)

Caller: I was on that boat once.

Caller: Yeah, it used to be docked about ten minutes from where I live.
Oh, man, it was a beauty, wasn't it?

Caller: Oh man! Gorgeous...

Where did you live? You lived in Rio?
Caller: Yeah, I can't...
It was Antigua.

Caller: It wasn't called Rio.
No, the boat wasn't called Rio. So where were you? In the Caribbean?

Caller: What's that?
Love Fuzz You were in the Carib...
Caller: No, no, you see, it was docked here for a while in Washington, at Point Roberts, Washington, which is like ten minutes away from where I live.
Wow. Really.

Caller: Yeah.

And caller? Caller? Keep on rockin' in the free world, and doot doola doot doo...
Caller: Doot doot!
Did you ever attend parties with, say, Janet Street Porter, Julie Burchill or Barbara Ellen at all?
I love Janet Street Porter. She's a, she's a she's very, ah, she's an incredible gal. I've never met Julie Burchill at all. Um, and who is the other? Barbara Ellen. I know that name. Yeah, yeah....

For people who are not aware of Janet Street Porter, what would you say? What is her claim to fame for people who are unaware of who she is?
Um, she is one of the most outspoken women in the British media, on everything from feminism to fashion to popular culture.

She really discovered Sig Sig Sputnik, didn't she? That was her really big thing?
Well, she was living with Tony, Tony, for a long time, yeah. I don't know if she discovered them. I mean, she... Tony is another great kind of mind. He is another one of the great inventors in British pop.

Do you remember Hayzee Fantayzee at all? "John Wayne Was a Big Leggy" at all?
Right. Yes. I do. I do. Terrible attitudes they had. They were on EMI I think for a while. But Kate has become quite a successful fashion photographer.

What were their attitudes?
Well they had that kind of London clubland elitist kind of thing which is probably borne out of insecurity, you know. That I know. Was it Jeremy? Was Jeremy the other guy in Hayzee Fantayzee? Yeah, I've seen Jeremy around since then. He's become a successful DJ.
What, what was it like touring with Duran Duran? Do you remember playing with a Canadian band called The Pursuit of Happiness at all?

You did a big tour with them.

What do you remember about that tour? Because Moe Berg, the singer, said, when asked to comment to the question, "What was it like to play with Duran Duran? Did Duran Duran hang around?" he said, Duran Duran "didn't hang around."
We love having our pictures taken
What was it like touring, well, you know, like, did you get a chance to interact with the bands? Where bands allowed- were the opening- did you ever try to see the opening bands? Were the bands not allowed to see you? Was there an uneasy feeling?
I think I could say yes to all of those questions really. I mean, you know, you know, over a fifteen-sixteen year career, I mean, one night you might be totally unavailable and unapproachable, and then another night we might all go out and watch the band and, you know. It would depend on the day, you know. By the time the opening band ... we've had some good, you know, we've been blessed. We've had some great bands playing with us. Um, right back to our first British tour we did, we had a band called Talk Talk. I love them. They went to become, I think, a really underestimated band who had a lot of success in Europe and not much here. Erasure did their first American tour with us. The Cranberries did their first American tour with us. Terence Trent Darby toured with us. Yeah, so, you know, that is one of the bonuses really, if you can bring in somebody interesting.
Now, John, in the liner notes for Feelings Are Good, you thank "my wife Melanie"?
No, I don't. Hein Hoven thanks his wife Melanie.

Oh, am I reading the notes wrong? Oh! I thought Amanda De Cadenet was your wife.
Oh, well, maybe it's been mis-translated or something, because Melanie is Hein's wife.

How is Amanda doing? Is she going out with Keanu "Dogstar" Reaves now? Has she, like, left John Taylor for...
They are just good friends.
John, do you think you have a problem with Tiara's at all? What do you think about when you think of tiara's?
Tiaras that princesses wear in their hair?

Well, I think they're wonderful.
Er... hello? Because, well, you have a song on your record called "Hole in the Mud." Is that possibly about Courtney Love hanging and messing about with Amanda De Cadenet...

Because the lyrics go, "Leave me alone, you know the game, Miss interfering I don't interfere with you." It kind of sounds like "Crisis = Opportunity." What do you think Amanda learned from Courtney Love?
What has she learned? Not to lend any of her clothing out, I think is probably what she has learned from that.
So "Hole in the Mud" is not about Courtney Love then?
No, no, no. I am rather fond of Courtney Love actually.

Because there was that picture of Courtney and Amanda together wearing those tiaras.
Right! Right! So that was where you got that from! She is amazing, Courtney. But so is Amanda, you know. The town wasn't big enough for the both of them. I'm not quite sure. I don't know. Girls, they get worked up, you know.

But you do know about the closets and I guess Amanda's closet got a bit emptied by Courtney or vice versa.
I don't know. I think there was a dress that went missing that was not returned, I guess.
By Courtney?
I'm on dangerous ground here because I don't want to start a war.

Where is Steve Strange of Visage?
Oooooh, I haven't seen Steve Strange in about two and a half years and I really don't know what he is doing.

Because Rusty Egan who played drums for Visage, played drums for the Skids and the Rich Kids as well.

Did you ever see the Rich Kids at all?
I loved the Rich Kids. I used to go see the Rich Kids all the time.
The X-Wife
What about Warren Cucurillo? What is he up to now?
Well, he is preparing to take part in the release of the next Duran Duran album.

Did you ever see Missing Persons at all?

Because Terri Bozzio, who was in Missing Persons, did you ever see her naked in Hustler?

Dale Bozzio! Oh, sorry.
I didn't see her in Hustler. No.

What about Kevin Rowland of Dexy's Midnite Runners. Does he still have a career? What is he doing?
I don't know. You know, he had a big chip on his shoulder, that man. He couldn't really get around it enough to play the game that was required in order to continue being a functioning piece of the music business.
VH1 had claimed her Do you keep up with the current music scene at all, like NME...
I got together with Jimmy from the Bloodhound Gang. That was kind of fun. Um, they'd, I think they'd made a couple of references to the band on their current album, and one on their previous album. And Mojo Records, who are the people who put out Goldfinger, are putting together a Duran Duran tribute record together, and they asked me if I wanted to work with Jimmy on a track. And I went to see him and he was kind of interesting. We had a good laugh actually, until they did the song called "The Drummer from Def Leppard's Only Got One Arm." That was a bit much for me.
John, do you remember Kajagoogoo?
Are they from Leyton, Buzzard.
I don't know. I don't know.
Because there were a lot, alot of those, you know, Visage, Heaven 17, Flock of Seagulls, ABC, OMD.... You guys were kind of the last of the New Romantics, weren't you?
Ohhh, I don't know.
Because Kajagoogoo! I loved that name! I loved that band! It just seemed so interesting! Kajagoogoo. Kajagoogoo. What do you remember about Kajagoogoo?
(sings) Too shy, ooooo-aii. Too shy-aii-aii. Yes, Nick Beggs. Limahl, who then went on to the theme to The Neverending Story. Neverending Story. Yes, I remember seeing him - the first time I met him, he was playing Cupid at, he was working at a nightclub in London called The Embassy and he was working behind, he was in a glass case dressed nothing but spray-on golden sparkles, and he had wings on. He was playing Cupid, yeah.
How Jane Fonda-esque!
Uhh, yeah. Maybe.
Caller, you are there!
Caller: Yes I am.

You have a question for John Taylor? Go ahead.
Caller: Yes, I saw you guys probably around 1980 or 1979 at the CNE opening up for Blondie.

Caller: That was a wonderful experience because I was into the punk and the first new music experience, to listen to that, and I really enjoyed that, and then you guys got so huge. I'm glad you guys did quite well over the years.
Thanks. Yeah, that was one of those events actually. That was one of those kind of days when you knew you were doing something right. I remember the - I think we did about twelve shows with Blondie and, uh, our star was rising and their's was really, really.... They were stuck. They were falling fast...

Caller: Yeah, yeah, around 1979, I was listening to "Planet Earth" and I thought that was fantastic, and then the "Rio" came out and it was, it was just starting to get big probably about four months later and I saw you guys just about breaking it, just about. It was still underground still. I just really enjoyed the whole environment...
I don't take much notice of the press, but I did say that the review from that show in the Toronto Sun, I think, maybe, was "Blondie Nil, Duran One."

Caller: Right. I agree with you.

Well thank you for phoning in, caller, and keep on rockin' in the free world, and doot doola doot doo.
Caller: Doot doot.
Did you ever see the Buggles still around? The Buggles? The Buggles? Ever see those guys around?
The Buggles?

Trevor Horn?

Trevor Horn and, uh, the guy from Yaz, wasn't it? No, they were just a one-shot only deal, weren't they? They were like the Neurotic Outsiders. It was like one album and then they were gone.
Still gets painted up!
Oh, don't say that about the Neurotic Outsiders! Hopefully there's going to be more!
(laughs) Oh, I don't think so!

Come on! You sound so depressed there! We've got to cheer you up! John Taylor of Duran Duran. Come on! One last caller for John Taylor formerly of Duran Duran. John Taylor, ex of Duran Duran. Let's just let John know that we want to see the Neurotic Outsiders! We want them to come to Vancouver! Come on, Vancouver! Speak to John Taylor and tell him we want him! We want his solo project! Go ahead, caller, are you there?
Caller: I called earlier and I was really nervous and I still am but I was making really weird throat noises and then I got hung up on, so I thought maybe it was the quality assurance guy, you know, listening to me making these weird noises and he thought he'd better disconnect me. Yeah! We want you to come to Vancouver.
Thank you.

Caller: Right, and I also gotta say, too, that the Duran Duran stuff is still fresh for me. The last album was as good or better than the rest of them.
The old obscured Okay, caller, one second. How about a little hoot here for John Taylor? How about a little hoot here for John Taylor?
Caller: Hooooooooo!

All right.
That's beautiful.
Caller: Yeah!

Thank you, caller, and doot doola doot doo....
Caller: Doot doot.
All right. And thanks, John, for phoning into the Nardwuar the Human Serviette radio show.
Yeah, you're welcome!

I really enjoyed having you. And just finally, winding up here, why should people care, do you think, about Feelings Are Good, and the brand new John Taylor?
Why should they care? Because it's good for them. Caring is good for them.

And finally, John Taylor, is Prefab Sprout a good name.
I don't think so.

All right! And keep on rockin' in the free world! Have a good one. Hope to hear from you again. Feel free to phone up! Good luck with all your records. And keep on rockin' in the free world! And doot doola doot doo...
Doot doot.
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