Friday, May 2, 2008

Bushey, Hertfordshire, England
Simon John Charles Le Bon (born October 27, 1958) is the lead singer and lyricist of the pop/rock band Duran Duran. He was born in Bushey Maternity Hospital, Hertfordshire.

Simon Le Bon Duran Duran
In 1984 Le Bon wooed the young fashion model Yasmin Parvaneh after seeing her face in a magazine and phoning her modelling agency to track her down. They married on December 27, 1985 and Yasmin Le Bon has gone on to enjoy a supermodel career of unusual longevity-- more than twenty years. After suffering two miscarriages, the couple had three daughters: Amber Rose Tamara (born August 1989), Saffron Sahara (born September 1991) and Tallulah Pine (born September 1994).

While Duran Duran was on hiatus in 1985, Le Bon drew media attention when his maxi-yacht Drum lost her keel and capsized during the Fastnet race, just off Falmouth, along the southern coast of Cornwall. Before being rescued, Le Bon and other crew members were trapped underwater, inside the hull, for forty minutes. Despite the accident, Le Bon and Drum went on to participate in the 1985-1986 Whitbread Round the World Race, coming in third overall in elapsed time. Le Bon and his partners eventually sold Drum; the events surrounding Drum and the races were chronicled in a 1989 movie entitled Drum - The Journey Of A Lifetime (ASIN 6301334159).
Twenty years after his accident, in 2005, Le Bon made public his desire to race again. During a touring hiatus in August 2005, Le Bon again raced Drum in the Fastnet race, borrowing the vessel from her current owner to participate, and raising funds for the RNLI charity. Unfortunately, Le Bon had to leave the race unfinished, as light winds were slowing Drum (and Drum's competitors), and would have delayed the boat's arrival at Plymouth, interfering with Le Bon's obligation to perform in Japan at a sold-out, 60,000-seat show. [1]

Before Duran Duran reunited, Le Bon formed the band Arcadia with fellow Duran Duran members Nick Rhodes and Roger Taylor. Arcadia released only one album, the multi-platinum So Red The Rose (1985), and the band never toured.

Following the departures of Roger Taylor and Andy Taylor, Le Bon, Rhodes, and John Taylor continued on as Duran Duran, recording and releasing Notorious (1986) and Big Thing (1988). The group added guitarist Warren Cuccurullo and Sterling Campbell (his only album as a member of the band) and recorded the album Liberty (1990), but the band's success had begun to wane in the late-1980s.
Duran Duran had a resurgence in popularity in 1993 with The Wedding Album. Several months into the intensive concert tour supporting this album, Le Bon suffered from strained vocal cords, and the tour was postponed for six weeks while he recovered.
In 1995, Duran Duran released the covers album Thank You, and Le Bon had the chance to cover some of his favorite artists, (Jim Morrison, Lou Reed, and Elvis Costello), but the album was severely panned by critics from all quarters. That year Le Bon also performed Duran Duran's 1993 hit "Ordinary World" with opera tenor Luciano Pavarotti during a "Children of Bosnia" benefit concert for War Child. Le Bon described the event to Jam! Showbiz thus: "If you're talking about name dropping, he's one of the biggest names you could drop, Pav-The-Man."
When bassist John Taylor left the band in 1997, Le Bon and Rhodes remained as the only two members who had been with Duran Duran from the beginning. The successive two albums with Le Bon, Rhodes, and Cuccurullo, Medazzaland (1997) and Pop Trash (2000) were not commercial successes.
In 2001, Duran Duran's original five members reunited to record a new album, "Astronaut", for Epic Records. "Astronaut" was released worldwide on 11 October 2004. The album was preceded by the single "(Reach Up For The) Sunrise", their first UK Top 10 single for a decade.

Solo excursions

Le Bon attended Birmingham University at the same time as Blancmange lead singer Neil Arthur. This fact came up during a Smash Hits interview of Blancmange done by Chris Heath. According to Arthur, Le Bon recognised his old university classmate immediately upon running into him backstage at a Top Of The Pops taping, and the two met up for a drink and friendly chat.
As a teenager, he was a next-door neighbour to actor Derek Fowlds.
On the Clerks 10th Anniversary DVD, producer Scott Mosier recalls Le Bon singing White Lines to him on his yacht during Clerks.' run at the Cannes Film Festival.

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