Duran Duran Singer Simon Le Bon’s ‘Dogs—’ First Show
Simon Le Bon doesn't think much of his first-ever gig, which became the only one the future Duran Duran frontman did with his punk band around 1978. Still, he admits he “had to start somewhere.”
The long-forgotten group was called Dog Days. “We were a proper punk band,” Le Bon says in an interview with the Big Issue, “and we played our one and only show at Harrow Tech, supporting a power-funk band called Supercharge who wouldn’t let us set up on stage. We had to play on the gym floor.
“We went past our time and they pulled the plug on us,” he added, “but we carried on without amplification. All you could hear was the drums and a little bit of shouting from me. As we walked off, we heard the MC say, ‘Thank you, Dogshit!’”
Before finding success as a singer, Le Bon wanted to pursue a career as an actor. “I was a huge fan of Laurence Olivier’s style, which was quite an impediment to my acting,” he admitted. “I was playing King Henry VIII in A Man for All Seasons, and my teacher told me to stop doing this Shakespearean voice rip-off of Olivier! I went to auditions and found out I wasn’t as good as I thought. That was a big learning experience.”
But Le Bon argued that turned out to be a secret weapon for Duran Duran. “The acting thing was crucial because we came on the scene at the same time as video and the explosion of MTV,” he said. “Duran Duran had an advantage in that I knew how to do stuff on camera that would work.”
The band recently released their 15th album, the Top 5 U.K. hit Future Past.