Hardcore Duranies elated by band's return

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Hardcore Duranies elated by band's return

Band's superfans have never forgotten impact of music in the '80s

COURTNEY DEVORES

"This reunion is as much about the fans as it is about the band," says Duran Duran drummer Roger Taylor. "We started going out and playing some gigs, and it was only the support we had from our fans that kept us going."

And fans continue to respond. Hardcore Duranies in the Charlotte area are lining up to see the original five, many for the first time.

"I have a front-row ticket to the show," said Stephen Herbster, a 34-year-old video editor for the Carolina Panthers.

Candice Langston, owner of Potion in Dilworth, has already seen them twice this year. She flew to Las Vegas in March for back-to-back shows at the Hard Rock Hotel.

"A friend who works at the Hard Rock got us into an acoustic session during the afternoon, so I really saw them 2 1/2 times," she gushed.

It wasn't her first brush with the band.

"I met John (Taylor) and Andy (Taylor) in 1985. I snuck into an after-party after a Power Station (the pair's side project with Robert Palmer) show in Atlanta. I was 16, and after seeing them in magazines, there they were," said Langston, 36. "It still makes my heart skip a beat."

Alonzo Greene, a real estate agent and New Jersey native, said he first got into the band after hearing the song "New Moon on Monday."

"To me, music is so trendy. They just had something that was totally different," he said.

Their theatrical videos filmed in exotic locales also attracted fans.

"I was in 10th grade, and a friend and I rented a video collection. We hadn't heard of them, but we watched that video 20 times that weekend," Langston recalled. "Obviously it was their look and music, but they seemed like intelligent people that were interested in art and fashion. There were more dynamics there than your average rock band."

Greene, 34, a former Marine who recently returned from Iraq, has seen them perform at London's Wembley Arena, Madison Square Garden and Radio City Music Hall and, like Herbster and Langston, will be at Verizon on Tuesday to catch the original lineup.

"I would go and see them anyway," he said. "But (this lineup) is exciting because the people who were really into them will come out."

Langston, who once collected T-shirts, imports and magazines, said she credits the group with influencing her path in life.

"What I learned from watching their videos inspired me to get out in the world and look beyond Charlotte, North Carolina," she said.

She even encountered her favorite band member, Nick Rhodes, while living in London, she said. But she didn't approach him. She may be worldly, but still star-struck.

"I was too nervous."

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Courtesy Charlotte Observer

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