I was 14 years old when I saw my first Duran Duran concert. How long ago was that? Well, a gallon of gas cost 87 cents, Margaret Thatcher was elected British prime minister for the third time, and Prozac made its market debut. Ronald Reagan was still U.S. president and The Bangles’ “Walk Like an Egyptian” might have been the only song you ever heard on the radio.
I was about to start high school. Many of my graduate school classmates were not even born yet. The year? 1987. Duran Duran’s “Notorious” album was still a relatively new release that I listened to on a cassette tape, not a compact disc or MP3.
We did not Google or download back then.
My mother knew how much my sister and I loved Duran Duran and surprised us with tickets to see them at Merriweather Post Pavillion, just outside of Baltimore. Erasure was the opening act and I will never forget the way my mother sat there reading the A-section of The New York Times as they performed. At one point, Mom peered over the top of the newspaper to watch the band as my sister and I danced to “Victim of Love.”
When she had seen enough, she shot us a “What the hell is this?” look before going back to her reading.
Who reads the newspaper during a concert? Only my mom.
As soon as Duran Duran took the stage,