Tuesday, November 20, 2012

John Taylor – In the Pleasure Groove (Dutton)

Confessions of a music addict:
- I love music…a wide range and variety of music.

- I am also a fan of music related biographies even if they fall into the formula of something out of the Behind the Music series…you know; boy gets guitar, boy forms band, band becomes hit, band goes on tour, band gets girls, band does drugs, band has a falling out, guitar player goes to rehab and drummer goes back to delivering pizzas, guitar player gets clean, guitar player orders pizza and drummer delivers, a tearful reunion ensues with plans for a new album and tour!

- Duran Duran would not have been my first choice of 80s bands to have survived and continue to have a successful career three decades later.

I approached Duran Duran bass player John Taylor’s bio, In the Pleasure Groove, not from the perspective of a sweaty palmed fan, but that of a fan of music bios and Taylor’s thundering rhythm foundation he laid down with drummer Tony Thompson for the band Power Station.

Groove serves up a generous helping of all the usual go to storylines of a music bio; Taylor details his musical start during the heady punk rock days of the Sex Pistols and how has his skills developed not only did his sound evolve but also the band’s look, heavy on the eyeliner and women’s clothes.

The early days were replete with revolving door band members and the magic moment when the right mix of players came together to create what would become the final version of the band. Hitting the road and record deals come quickly followed closely by recording, debut albums and the nearly mandatory trek to the United States.

Taylor laces just the right amount of personal anecdotes that the formulaic story doesn’t become dull. Yes there are your standard stories of drugs, rehab, and a parade of model girlfriends and wives. In the Pleasure Groove is an entertaining, quick read.

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