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Simon Le Bon was lead singer of the 1980s pop group Duran Duran, known for recording the hit song “Hungry Like the Wolf.” He left the group before they later reunited in 2001.
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Simon Le Bon was born on October 27, 1958, in Bushey, England. In 1980, he auditioned to join the rock group Duran Duran. Before long, Duran Duran became one of the biggest music acts of the decade. By the late 1980s, Duran Duran’s popularity began to wane. In 1996, Le Bon branched out on his own. The group reunited in 2001. In 2007, Duran Duran released their album, Red Carpet Massacre.
Singer and songwriter Simon Le Bon was born on October 27, 1958, in Bushey, England. As the lead singer of Duran Duran, Simon Le Bon became one of the leading pop icons of the 1980s. As a child, he sang in a church choir but was even more interested in acting. Le Bon started out as a model and appeared in commercials and plays, according to People magazine. After graduating high school, he spent some time in Israel, working on a kibbutz. Le Bon later returned to England where he studied drama at the University of Birmingham.
In 1980, Le Bon auditioned to join the rock group Duran Duran, which was started by Nick Rhodes and John Taylor. Le Bon was introduced to the group by an ex-girlfriend who worked at the Rum Runner, a club where the band often played. As the story goes, Le Bon made quite an impression on the band with his outfit, which featured a pair of pink leopard-print pants. Before long, he had dropped out of school and was their lead singer as the group continued to perform in Birmingham clubs. The most famous line-up of the group was now set: Le Bon on vocals, Rhodes on keyboards, John Taylor on bass guitar, Andy Taylor on lead guitar and Roger Taylor on drums. Duran Duran broke into the British charts with the single “Planet Earth” in 1981. Their self-titled album was released later that year.
While the band did not receive critical acclaim, Duran Duran did attract a lot of attention, mostly for their photogenic faces and their music videos. Their first video, “Girls on Film,” created its share of controversy for featuring some risqué scenes with beautiful models.
For their second album, Rio, Duran Duran took a more cinematic approach to the increasingly popular art form of the music video. For “Hungry Like the Wolf,” the video had an adventure theme similar to the popular Indiana Jones films. The title track was shot in Sri Lanka and featured the band sailing on a beautiful yacht—an interesting choice considering that sailing had been actually a great interest of Le Bon since his youth. Both videos received a lot of play on MTV and “Hungry Like the Wolf” was the group’s first top 10 hit in the United States.
Before long, Duran Duran became one of the biggest music acts of the decade. Their fans were devoted to such a frenzied level that it reminded many of the mania that surrounded the Beatles. There were even comparisons drawn between the two groups with Duran Duran being christened the “Fab Five.” Their extensive touring and a third album, Seven and the Ragged Tiger (1983), only further cemented their pop star standing.
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