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Careless Memories
3 careless memories uk 12 EMI 5168 duran duran song
single by Duran Duran
B-side "Khanada"


Released 20 April 1981
Format 7", 12"
Genre Pop
Length 3:53 minutes
Label Capitol, EMI
Writer(s) Duran Duran
Producer Colin Thurston
Duran Duran

"Careless Memories" is the second single by Duran Duran, released by Capitol-EMI from their eponymous debut album Duran Duran on 20 April 1981.

About the song[]

Since the single's release it has come to light that the decision to release it was EMI's. After the single stalled at #37 in the charts, the label decided to let Duran Duran choose their own singles. (Incidentally, the next single, "Girls on Film" peaked at #5).

The menacing and energetic song was an early fan and band favorite in live shows, but was gradually squeezed out over the years by more successful hits.

Music video[]

The original video, rarely seen as the single was deemed a failure, was shot in Soho and directed by Perry Haines and Terry Jones, who both went on to form i-D Magazine. It was included in the Duran Duran video album released in 1983.

The video features shots of the band performing on a misty soundstage are interspersed with other scenes which loosely tell a story. The band gathers around a table in a white flat while Simon lip-synchs angrily to the camera. There are also several shots of very young-looking band members traveling in a car with a young woman.

The band resurrected the song to play live during their reunion shows in 2004 and 2005. The song was accompanied on video screens behind the stage by an anime-style video, featuring stylized versions of the band members performing on stage, and then fighting off assassins, each in a manner suiting their personality. Then they begin fighting giant monsters, spaceships, and destroying a skyscraper labelled "EMI" for "Endangered Music Industry" which is a dig at the band's old record company.

This version appears as an Easter egg on the Live from London DVD. It can be found by pressing the "up" button three times when the live version of "Careless Memories" begins to play.

B-sides, bonus tracks and remixes[]

The song "Khanada" (pronounced "keh-NAY-duh") was included as the B-side to the single and is deemed by some as superior to the a-side. It is reported to have been written for fashion designer Jane Kahn who owned, with partner Patti Bell, the Hurst street shop Kahn & Bell where Duran Duran (and numerous other clubgoers of the day) shopped for clothes. (It has nothing to do with Canada.)

"Careless Memories" is one of three original-era singles that didn't include a remix of the title track, the other two being "Save A Prayer" and "A View to a Kill". To compensate for this, EMI issued a bonus B-side on the 12", a faithful cover of David Bowie's "Fame". However, the "Careless Memories" 12" version fades out at 3:44 seconds, the 7" version three seconds earlier at 3:41. The 7" version is included in the Singles Box Set 1981-1985 runs to 3:44 as it includes three seconds of silence after the fade out.

In Japan, the two b-sides were released on the Nite Romantics EP, along with night versions of "Girls on Film" and "Planet Earth".

Track Listing[]

Release information pertains to UK release only.

7": EMI EMI 5168

  1. "Careless Memories" - 3:41
  2. "Khanada" - 3:17

12": EMI 12 EMI 5168

  1. "Careless Memories" - 3:44
  2. "Fame" - 3:11
  3. "Khanada" - 3:17

CD: Part of the "Singles Box Set 1981-1985"

  1. "Careless Memories" - 3:44
  2. "Khanada" - 3:17
  3. "Fame" - 3:11

Other appearances[]

When the song "Is There Something I Should Know" was issued as a single in the US, "Careless Memories" was placed on the flipside. The song was also a live staple throughout the 1980s, as evidenced on the live album Arena.

A live version of "Careless Memories" recorded in December 1981 at the Hammersmith Odeon in London was released in 1982 as the B-side to "Hungry Like the Wolf".

Perhaps due to its poor charting, "Careless Memories" was one of the few singles left off the Decade hits collection released in 1989.

Apart from the single, "Careless Memories" has also appeared on:


Box sets:



Duran Duran are:

Also credited:


So soon,
Just after you've gone
My senses sharpen
But it always takes
So damned long
Before I feel how much
My eyes have darkened

Fear hangs a plane of gunsmoke
Drifting in our room
So easy to disturb
With a thought
With a whisper...
With a careless memory

On the table
Signs of love life scattered...
And the walls break
We go crashing within
It's not as though--
As though you really mattered
But being close,
How could I let you go
Without some feeling
Some precious sympathy following

Fear hangs a plane of gunsmoke
Drifting in our room
So easy to disturb
With a thought
With a whisper...
With a careless memory

I walk out into the sun
I try to find a new day
But the whole place
It just screams in my eyes
Where are you now?
Cuz I don't want to meet you
I think I'd die--
I think I'd laugh at you--
I think I'd cry--
What am I supposed to do,
Follow you?

Outside the thoughts
Come flooding back now...
I just try to forget you...
So easy to disturb
With a thought...
With a whisper...
With a careless memory...

See also[]

Simon Le BonNick RhodesJohn TaylorRoger Taylor
Andy TaylorWarren CuccurulloSterling Campbell

Duran DuranRioSeven and the Ragged TigerArenaNotoriousBig ThingLibertyDuran Duran (The Wedding Album)Thank YouMedazzalandPop TrashAstronautRed Carpet MassacreAll You Need Is NowPaper GodsFuture PastDanse Macabre


CarnivalDecade: Greatest HitsGreatestNight Versions: The Essential Duran DuranStrange BehaviourSingles Box Set 1981-1985Singles Box Set 1986-1995From Mediterranea With Love


"Planet Earth" • "Careless Memories" • "Girls on Film" • "My Own Way" • "Hungry Like the Wolf" • "Save a Prayer" • "Rio"• "Is There Something I Should Know?" • "Union of the Snake" • "New Moon on Monday" • "The Reflex" • "The Wild Boys" • "A View to a Kill" • "Notorious" • "Skin Trade" • "Meet El Presidente" • "I Don't Want Your Love" • "All She Wants Is" • "Do You Believe in Shame?" • "Burning the Ground" • "Violence of Summer (Love's Taking Over)" • "Serious" • "Ordinary World" • "Come Undone" • "Too Much Information" • "Perfect Day" • "White Lines" • "Out of My Mind" • "Electric Barbarella" • "Someone Else Not Me" • "(Reach Up for The) Sunrise" • "What Happens Tomorrow" • "Nice" • "Falling Down • "All You Need Is Now • "Girl Panic! • "Leave A Light On • "Pressure Off" • "Five Years" • "Invisible" • "More Joy" • "Anniversary" • "Tonight United" • "Give It All Up " • "Danse Macabre" • "Black Moonlight"

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