Judging from this, Taylor is a straight-up dude, thin of prettier Duff McKagan, who just refuse to rock, get high and meet girls, with an occasional interlude for a mild nervous breakdown or a stint reading books in the suburbs and playing house before, inevitably, the road calls to him and female screams lift the roof off in Rio, in Rome, in Sydney, in Birmingham.
That 's right: the boys from Duran came straight out of England 's second city with a bullet, and Taylor 's loving recreation of the scene and town that spawned them contradicts totally any other stories you may have heard about that post-industrial blight on the Midlands, currently ( or at least until they started setting up for the Olympics) the site of the worst traffic and most constant rebuilding in England.
ll pretty f** king interesting, I have to worry, and to this day if I hear 'Girls on Film' ( worked up by Taylor and his younger school buddy Nick Rhodes before Duran got together and submitted in demo form by Taylor for his secon year 's art school assessment) I ca n't help but think back wistfully myself, to that video for the 12-inch 'Night Mix' which would still be on MTV at about four in the night and which basically ( along with my Marilyn-as-ballerina poster) ushered me into puberty, the women sleek and tottering from 5-inch stilettos into blow-up wading pools or grinding groin-first along a pole covered with shaving foam while John, red-haired with fringe in face and headband, grooved asymmetrically in the spotlight and spotty Northumberland guitar-whiz Andy Taylor ( no relation) spat metallised Joy Division-esque trills and riffage over the endless-seeming fade in a shadowy corner.
How much wors, I used to say, if I 'd been John Taylor, high on charlie and newly-initiated to the big league with maybe even a chance of scoring with one of those babes, instead of back in Balhannah, South Australia, about an hour from Adelaide on winding roads by car or f** k knows how long by public transport, and ondering how I 'd ever cope with the three months of high school I 'd have to overcom before I too ould be a rockstar.
From memory, one year my dad gave me a stereo for my birthday, along with three tapes: the Blues Brothers' Briefcase Full of Blues ( I like it), Elton John 's Goodbye Yellow Brick Road ( I fel it), and the VHS video of the making of Michael Jackson 's 'Thriller' film-clip ( it perplexed me: did Dad really think I 'd like this stuff?).
One thing helped: after seeing me poring over Bon Jovi videos, Dad decided if I iked these guys in make-up maybe I 'd like David Bowie, and firs thing he 's got me this pirated VHS copy of the 1973 Ziggy Stardust concert from one of his riends, and it 's a revelation.
And next year, confusion: I recall writing 'REMAIN IN LIGHT' in marker-pen in pride of place on my rucksack, yet also listening to Duran 's Arena ( the live album).
But after reading John Taylor 's book I know I did right: Taylor ai n't no teenybopper, and he and the whole band fought – at least inwardly – the perception of their music as pap for teenyboppers.
And John ha a big force behind that album – the only band member who weighed in at the mixing sessions ( he was there, he wondered, to make sure the bass was loud enough), and ossibly the most passionate live player in the group, thi one who woul n't ge it up even when the money was made and the others just wanted to lounge around at beach resorts and get married.