Written by: Mark McWhite
Photo’s by Will Crews Photography
DURAN DURAN came to DICKIES ARENA on August 30, 2022 and upon stepping into the venue I saw 3 Farrah Fawcett hairdos and lots of excited fans dressed for the eighties. The crowd spanned from 20 somethings to 70 somethings including many middle aged business professionals who were ready to relive their youth through music. The new DICKIES ARENA was packed (about 14,000) and many were pleasantly surprised with the opening act, NILE RODGERS & CHIC who had everyone on their feet and gyrating. Nile opened with “Dance Dance Dance” and “I Want Your Love”. He mentioned his many collaborations with a variety of famous artists from Madonna, David Bowie, Daft Punk and Pharrell Williams and kicked off a medley of hit songs mostly from the disco era. The female vocals of CHIC were very strong belting out “Like a Virgin” and “Material Girl”. Of Course “We are Family” had everyone singing and grooving. “Le Freak received wild applause as did “Lets Dance”. NILE RODGERS mentioned his bout with cancer and how his collaboration with his artists’ friends had helped him cope with and beat the disease. He said “music helps heal the body and soul and now I am cancer free” to which the crowd cheered. The drums were great. The bass was thumping and the horn section added that disco flavor. All in all the opening act appeared to be a huge hit with everyone.
During intermission, people were standing in a long line to buy merch from both acts. The food and drinks were flowing. The stage was set for the “notorious” DURAN DURAN with a huge back screen and side screen graphics. Then the band appeared to a roaring crowd. The guys looked and dressed the way you may remember them…very sharp and clean. After some “Velvet Newton” intro they broke into their song “Wild Boys” while everyone in the arena was on their feet with hands in the air. The huge hit “Hungry Like the Wolf” came early in the show and of course, was a fan favorite. The background graphics were abstract art and really complemented the song. (No Wolves or Wildlife). “Invisible”, ”All of You” and “Notorious” brought back memories of MTV and a simpler time of cool music videos.
Lead singer Simon Le Bon complimented the audience on their beautiful looks and said “I understand there is a little competition between Dallas and Fort Worth. Dallas people are boots and suits and Fort Worth people are Laid Back”. He said “we like laid back. Wouldn’t you rather be Laid Back”. But the DFW crowd was anything but laid back at that show. DURAN DURAN then performed some of their romantic hits like “Come Undone” and “Give it all up”. The mix of the music and video graphics was spot on.
The new DICKIES ARENA is a great venue for concerts. The sound is crisp and clear and no bouncing around and no holes in the sound. The band’s sound mix was superb. Fans could hear every note and understand every word. I personally like the way some words to a few songs were projected on the screen in an abstract way. (Not just text with a bouncing ball).
The band played all their hits encompassing some 20 songs ending with “Girls on Film”, “Save a Prayer” and super hit “Rio”.
Simon and the boys were very appreciative and responsive throughout the show and it seemed like they really enjoyed playing for gracious fans.
Maybe that’s why DURAN DURAN will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in November 2022.
Nile Rodgers & Chic