|covers album by Duran Duran|
|Released||4 April 1995|
|Genre||Alternative rock, pop rock|
About the album[edit | edit source]
The album was reportedly begun as a lighthearted tribute to the band's influences, in the vein of Bowie's Pin Ups.
Some of the tracks were recorded in borrowed studios (including Prince's Paisley Park) while the band were on The Wedding Album tour, with the intent to have an album ready to release soon after the tour was finished. Another studio album was to follow quickly afterwards. However, after a brief break the band set up a portable studio in the south of France to finish the album with producer John Jones, and progress slowed to a crawl. Conflicts within the band and between the band and Capitol/EMI created delay after delay, and mix after mix was ordered and rejected. Duran Duran's former drummer Roger Taylor, who retired from the band in 1986, joined Duran Duran in studio to play drums on "Watching the Detectives" and "Perfect Day" (as well as a cover of "Jeepster" by T. Rex that did not appear on the album).
By the time Thank You was finally released in 1995, the band was not enthusiastic about supporting the album, and much of the promotional work was done solely by Simon Le Bon and Warren Cuccurullo. Videos were completed for "White Lines" and "Perfect Day" (Roger Taylor, who did not tour or do any promotions with the band, excited old fans by appearing in "Perfect Day"), but the videos saw almost no airplay on the MTV or VH-1 channels. Duran Duran were not happy about a label-mandated 1995 summer tour of radio station festivals. Bassist John Taylor was particularly frustrated, and stormed off the stage several times over the course of the tour. After a final half-capacity show in Southern California, where the band was booed, Taylor remained in Los Angeles to launch the resolutely anti-corporate side project Neurotic Outsiders with former members of Guns N' Roses and the Sex Pistols.
The cover of this album features a collage of the various artists whose songs were covered on this album, including Bob Dylan, Iggy Pop, Public Enemy with Flavor Flav, Jim Morrisson of The Doors, Sly And The Family Stone, and Lou Reed.
Critical reception[edit | edit source]
The two singles from the album were covers of Grandmaster Flash's "White Lines" and Lou Reed's "Perfect Day", each of which had a fair performance on the charts (and praise from their original performers), but the critics lambasted the band's attempts at "911 Is a Joke", "Ball of Confusion" and "Crystal Ship".
J. D. Considine of Rolling Stone said "Some of the ideas at play here are stunningly wrongheaded, like the easy-listening arrangement given Elvis Costello's "Watching the Detectives" or the version of Zeppelin's "Thank You" that sounds like the band is covering Chris DeBurgh. But it takes a certain demented genius to recognize Iggy Pop's "Success" as the Gary Glitter tune it was meant to be or to redo "911 Is a Joke" so it sounds more like Beck than like Public Enemy."
The most interesting thing about the Thank You album and its many bad reviews, was that many of the original artists who had their songs covered actually liked the versions that Duran Duran had recorded. On Duran's cover of "Lay Lady Lay" Bob Dylan said, "It's the best yet. It beats mine by a country mile". And Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page described Duran Duran's version of "Thank You" as "exceptional". Lou Reed also joined in the praise, by saying that Duran Duran's version of "Perfect Day" was, "The best cover ever completed of one of my own songs".
Track listing[edit | edit source]
- "White Lines" (Grandmaster Flash) - 5:31
- "I Wanna Take You Higher" (Sly & The Family Stone) - 5:06
- "Perfect Day" (Lou Reed) - 3:51
- "Watching the Detectives" (Elvis Costello) - 4:48
- "Lay Lady Lay" (Bob Dylan) - 3:53
- "911 Is a Joke" (Public Enemy) - 3:59
- "Success" (Iggy Pop) - 4:05
- "Crystal Ship" (The Doors) - 2:52
- "Ball of Confusion" (The Temptations) - 3:46
- "Thank You" (Led Zeppelin) - 6:36
- "Drive By" (Duran Duran - introduction to "The Chauffeur") - 5:34
- "I Wanna Take You Higher Again" (Sly & The Family Stone) - 4:25
Additional tracks on the Japanese release:
Singles[edit | edit source]
Personnel[edit | edit source]
Duran Duran are:
- Steve Ferrone - drums on "White Lines" and "Crystal Ship"
- Terry Bozzio - drums on "Success", "Thank You" and "Drive By"
- Tony Thompson - drums on "I Wanna Take You Higher"
- Roger Taylor - drums on "Perfect Day" and "Watching the Detectives"
- Abe Laboriel Jr - drums on "Lay Lady Lay" and "I Wanna Take You Higher"
- Anthony J. Resta - drums on "White Lines", "Lay Lady Lay", "911 Is a Joke", "Ball of Confusion" and "I Wanna Take You Higher"
- Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five - backing vocals on "White Lines" and "I Wanna Take You Higher"
- Melle Mel - backing vocals, rap on "White Lines"
- Lamya - backing vocals on "White Lines", "I Wanna Take You Higher" and "Drive By".
- Curtis King Jr. - backing vocals on "I Wanna Take You Higher"
- Tessa Niles - backing vocals on "Perfect Day" and "Watching the Detectives"
- Maxanne Lewis - backing vocals on "Ball of Confusion"
- Flo & Eddie - backing vocals on "Success"
- Lee Oskar - harmonica on "Watching the Detectives" and "I Wanna Take You Higher"
- Jonathan Elias - moog synthesizer on "Crystal Ship"
- Bruce Dukov - violin (concert master-solo)
- Ron Folsom, Armen Garabedian, Henry Ferber, Berj Garabedian, Joy Lyle, Michelle Kikuchi-Richards, Maria Newman - violin strings
- Pamela Goldsmith, Scott Haupert - viola
- Suzie Katayama - cello
- Producer - Duran Duran (tracks 1-4, 6-11);
- Producer - Duran Duran, John Jones (tracks 5, 12).
- Engineering - Ken Scott, John Jones, Tony Taverner, Avril McCintosh, Steve Churchyard
- Mixing - Anthony J. Resta, Bob St. John, David Richards, Jason Corsaro, Tim Palmer
- Additional production, engineering - Anthony J. Resta, Bob St. John, John Jones
- Additional programming - Mark Tinley, Anthony J. Resta, John Jones -
- Mastering - Tim Young
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See also[edit | edit source]
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