The first week of November was an incredible one for ‘80s legends Duran Duran: They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and they put on an incredible show at the all-new Yaamava’ Resort & Casino.
There’s a saying that everything eventually comes back into fashion, however some bands never seemed to fall out of fashion. Duran Duran fits that description.
November 2, 2022
I’ll be honest; it’s been a minute since I have been to a casino. The last time I was in the area, I was there to see The English Beat, but I don’t remember it looking like this. The place has a new name and it had quite the makeover. The fresh appearance has this place looking like you are in Vegas at one of the newest and shiniest casinos in Sin City. But for the casual observer, you always know it’s a great place when you can say, “Wow! Cleanest bathrooms ever!”
All joking aside, I was very impressed by the casino when I walked in, and the friendly staff that greeted me. I wasn’t wearing any credentials, so they had no idea who I was, and it didn’t matter. I saw they treated everyone the same way, and the first-class treatment segued to the event showroom. I loved the banners and seeing the band’s name in billboards throughout the casino and the venue itself.
As I settled in, I decided the venue had that “new car” vibe. It somewhat resembles the YouTube Theater at SoFi, which, trust me, is quite the compliment. While I loved the environment, it is the sound that I always judge venues by.
The crowd began to roll in and I was very surprised at who attended. I thought I would see “some” Duran Duran fans, but expected mostly casino overflow – you know, people who were there and decided to take in a show. What I saw was people of all ages, all ethnicities, and all walks of life – which that part didn’t surprise me (casino, you know). What happened next totally caught me off guard.
As Duran’s “Velvet Newton” played over the PA, the lights dimmed, then came back up to a very cool green tint with a laser light show. Then it happened. Everyone in the house was screaming as if it was the second coming of The Beatles at “The Ed Sullivan Show.” Out came Nick Rhodes, John and Roger Taylor, and they took their positions. Then Simon Le Bon took to the stage and they immediately went into “Wild Boys.”
Here’s what threw me. As I looked around, all the kids, the 30-somethings, and AARP-adjacent fans were all one; they were all screaming at the top of their lungs to every word of that song. Clearly, these were not just casino patrons taking in a show. It was Duran Duran fans that just happened to be at a casino.
Immediately, the hit parade began with “Hungry Like the Wolf.” Le Bon welcomed everyone to the show, and asked if they were winning; everyone laughed. Then they started the catalogue, first with “Invisible,” and with the James Bond opening in the backdrop, “A View to a Kill.” Like I said, I was taken by the way their fans were really their fans. I looked around and everyone sang along to “Notorious” and “Come Undone.”
The band sounded great, the Taylors were sharp, Rhodes was masterful behind the keys, and Le Bon sounded just as good as ever. What I have always loved about this band has been their covers. I hadn’t heard this one before, but apparently the crowd had; well, maybe they just recognized it was a Rick James song. You guessed it; they went into “Super Freak!”
Other great tunes included “Planet Earth” and “The Reflex,” and then the crowd erupted over the Grandmaster Flash & Melle Mel cover of “White Lines.” Being the showman he is, Le Bon engaged with the crowd and led them into songs. What was heartfelt was how he dedicated “Ordinary World” to the people in Ukraine. This was an impactful show, but it seemed like it was over in a blink of an eye as they performed their juggernaut hit “Girls on Film” to close the show.
As the crowd lost its mind, the guys didn’t take long to rejoin the stage. The encore was epic. They opened with another great cover; Talking Heads’ “Psycho Killer.” The crowd apparently knew that one too as everyone in that house sang along. They closed with “Save a Prayer” and “Rio.”
Say what you want about bands from the ‘80s, but Duran Duran has not lost a step. Their fans span all ages and it is no wonder they remain a worldwide sensation. Couple that with an amazing venue and it makes for an incredible night of live music. Everyone should look forward to going to Yaamava’ to see show, and hey, play some slots while you’re there!