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Simon Le Bon

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Simon John Charles Le Bon (born October 27, 1958) is the lead singer and lyricist of the pop/rock band Duran Duran.

Le Bon’s ex-girlfriend, Fiona Kemp (a barmaid at the Rum Runner nightclub where Duran Duran was rehearsing), introduced him to the band in May of 1980, recommending him as a potential vocalist. As band legend has it, he turned up for the audition wearing pink leopard-print trousers, and carrying a notebook containing a large collection of poetry he had written - some of which would later become tracks on the early Duran Duran albums. After listening to the songs the band had already composed together, Le Bon spent some time fitting one of his poems (“Sound of Thunder”) to one of the instrumentals, and found they had a good match. Le Bon agreed to “try out for the summer”; within six weeks the band was playing steadily around Birmingham and London, and a national tour supporting Hazel O’Connor led to a record deal with EMI Records in December. Le Bon never returned to his acting career.

The band’s first album, Duran Duran, was released in 1981, and they quickly shot to fame as part of the New Romantic movement. Three more albums followed in quick succession: Rio (1982), Seven and the Ragged Tiger (1983) and Arena (1984). Each album release was accompanied by heavy media promotion and a lengthy concert tour. By mid-1984, the band was ready for a break. Duran Duran’s only other work that year was an appearance on the 1984 Band Aid charity single, “Do They Know It’s Christmas”.

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