Duran Duran (/djʊˌræn djʊˈræn/) are an English new wave band formed in Birmingham in 1978 by singer and bassist Stephen Duffy, keyboardist Nick Rhodes and guitarist/bassist John Taylor. With the addition of drummer Roger Taylor (no relation to John) the following year the band went through numerous personnel changes before May 1980, when they settled on their most famous line-up by adding guitarist Andy Taylor (no relation to John or Roger) and lead vocalist Simon Le Bon.
When Duran Duran emerged they were generally considered part of the New Romantic scene. Innovators of the music video, Duran Duran were catapulted into the mainstream with the introduction of the 24-hour music channel MTV. The group was a leading band in the MTV-driven Second British Invasion of the US in the 1980s.
The band's first major hit was "Girls on Film" (1981), from their self-titled debut studio album, the popularity of which was enhanced by a controversial music video. A heavily edited form played in rotation on MTV. The band's breakthrough second studio album was Rio (1982), which peaked at number six in the US, number two in the United Kingdom, and number one in Australia and Canada. The songs "Hungry Like the Wolf" and "Rio" featured cinematic music videos directed by Australian film maker Russel Mulcahy and became two of their biggest hits. "Hungry Like the Wolf" won the inaugural Grammy Award for Best Music Video in 1984. Their follow-up third studio album, Seven and the Ragged Tiger, became their only UK number one album and featured the US and UK number one single "The Reflex". In 1985, the band topped the US charts with the single "A View to a Kill" from the soundtrack of the film of the same name.
Andy and Roger left the band before the recording of their fourth studio album, Notorious (1986), which yielded the top ten title track. The band spent the rest of the 1980s and early 1990s continuing to release albums and singles, to only moderate success. Their comeback studio album, 1993's Duran Duran (commonly called The Wedding Album) featured two top-ten worldwide hits "Ordinary World" and "Come Undone". After John Taylor left in 1997, the band released a number of albums and singles which underperformed on the sales charts. A full reunion of the original line-up of Le Bon, Rhodes, and all three Taylors in 2001 led to a number of highly successful concert tours and the 2004 studio album Astronaut, which reached number 3 in the UK and top 40 in numerous other countries. The album's lead single "(Reach Up for The) Sunrise" was an international dance hit, and reached number five in the UK. Andy left again in 2006, and the band have released four additional albums, with the most recent being Future Past in 2021.
Duran Duran have sold over 100 million records, making them one of the world's best-selling music artists. They achieved 30 top 40 singles in the UK Singles Chart (14 of them top 10) and 21 top 40 singles in the US Billboard Hot 100. The band have won numerous awards throughout their career: two Brit Awards including the 2004 award for Outstanding Contribution to Music, two Grammy Awards, an MTV Video Music Award for Lifetime Achievement, and a Video Visionary Award from the MTV Europe Music Awards. They were also awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The band was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as part of the class of 2022.
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