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Rob Sheffield

Talking to Girls About Duran Duran: One Young Man's Quest for True Love and a Cooler Haircut

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Amazon.com ReviewTalking to Girls About Duran Duran may sound like a dream come true to all the women who she-bopped through the 80s, but at heart it's the Feminine Mystique that every boy-next-door has been waiting for (and will actually read). It's something like a prequel to --Anne Bartholomew
Rob Sheffield's Top '80s Summer Cruising SongsReading Talking to Girls About Duran Duran is a nostalgia trip you'll love taking: add Rob Sheffield's exclusive playlist to the mix--featured below, with liner notes--and you'll be ready for some kind of wonderful summer night. You can also sample and download these songs in 


Scarface, I got high on my own supply, which means I spent the summer with one hand on the wheel and another one stuffing my face. I was also listening to the radio 18 hours a day, so I got obsessed with this song. I still get choked up at the “heartbreak overload” part.

This song always reminds me of a cool girl I hung around with in the summer of 1988. She liked setting things on fire, getting both of us thrown out of bars, and Def Leppard. It's funny because this is a classic hair-metal ballad, but with all these glossy keyboards, it sounds like impeccable '80s synth-pop--it could pass for prime New Order or OMD. (Editor's note: Song is available on album only.) From Publishers WeeklyIn this tuneful coming-of-age memoir, the glamorous New Wave band Duran Duran presides spiritually over the all-consuming teenage male efforts to comprehend the opposite sex. Music journalist Sheffield (_Love Is a Mix Tape_) chronicles his passage through the 1980s in a series of chapters in which period groups—from headliners like Roxy Music and Prince to one-hit wonders like Haysi Fantayzee of Shiny Shiny semifame—provides musical accompaniment to his adolescent angst. They are the soundtrack to his fumbling attempts to dance or make passes at girls, to weather a winless stint on the high school wrestling team, to survive a summer job as an ice-cream truck driver. The relationship insights he arrives at—chiefly, the imperative of unquestioning submission to female whims—are no more or less cogent than the song lyrics he gleans them from. The book really shines as a collection of free-form riffs on the glorious foolishness of Reagan-era entertainment—the movie E.T., he writes, was about a sad muppet who thought he was David Bowie—and its weirdly resonant emotional impact. The result is a funny, poignant browse from a wonderful pop-culture evocateur. (July)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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