In the Pleasure Groove: Love, Death, and Duran Duran; co-written by Tom Sykes is the story of the most iconic band for the 1980s: Duran Duran. But it is also the story of his personal journey. He is blessed with loving and supportive parents. But thanks to the ‘sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle‘ Taylor loses his way and takes decades to find his way home. Kind of like Dorothy and the Wizard of Oz.
Taylor has a fascinating story to tell and is smart enough to write in plain prose most of the time. There are some flowery sections- it sounds like he’s quoting his original journals. Taylor comes across as sympathetic even as he confesses his many sins. I wish he could have talked more about the creative process- only because that interests me more than his personal life. I also wish he could have wrote more about Powerstation. I found that album to be much much better than anything Duran Duran ever did. From the book I’m left with the feeling Duran Duran was in the right place at the right time, with the right sound and interesting videos when MTV was desperate to show anything.
Amazon Book Preview of In The Pleasure Groove
When I woke up, it was already evening, and I just knew, I was going to have to go through with the rehab. Call the damn place, pay the price, and deal with the praying and hand-holding when I got there.
Rehab. What a loser. Was there a more blatant, obvious acknowledgment that I had totally fucked up my life? As I lay in bed with last night’s booze and drugs oozing out of my pores, I was haunted by the familiar wave of regrets: the opportunities I had wasted in the eighties, the bad choices I had made, over and over, again and again. What an asshole I was! “I could have been a contender.”
I had been in London for less than a month. Perhaps two or three weeks had passed since I had been told I could “really be somebody” if I could stop using drink and drugs.
I went off on a tour around the United States with my band, playing to audiences that were not on the scale of Duran Duran, and that’s putting it mildly. I remember playing a club in Miami during a terrifying storm to eight people.
You were there? Wow.
That’s when you find out if you are the real thing or not. If you’ve got it in the blood. Anyone can walk out onstage in front of thirty thousand people who all have the records and know all the words and are having a good time.
But if you can walk onstage in front of eight and enjoy yourself, then maybe you’ve got something. I realized I could have a crappy gig in front of thousands but an amazing time in front of a few.
The size of the crowd didn’t matter, because so much of performing is actually an inside job. I learned to approach every gig as the most important gig I will ever play. Which it is.
It’s a fantastic formula.