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Peter Brinkhof's Collectors Corner

Planet Earth

Peter Brinkhof, Collectors Corner Editor

As we steadily (and tentatively during this Coronavirus pandemic) approach the 40th anniversary of one of the UK’s most successful music artist exports, ever in the history of music, it gives us great pleasure to welcome a long standing fan and collector of Duran Duran memorabilia!

 

Peter Brinkhof, who lives in The Netherlands, joins Duran Duran Rocks with his very own Collectors Corner. Many of the collectors amongst us will know Peter from his time as a writer for Duran Duran Official. He possesses a real passion and zest for searching on line for bargains and for visiting the largest record fairs he can find. He is in-famed for his unlimited knowledge in the world of Duran Duran collecting. Likewise, his resources are endless and he has an astonishing, but admirable, relentless thirst for education.

 

I have lost count the amount of times I notice his replies to social media posts, giving advice to those who listen and making corrections along the way. Trust me, if you want to learn about Duran Duran’s history, discography and vinyl, whether it be promos, test pressings, bootlegs etc, then Peter Brinkhof is that man.

 

Peter’s personal Duran Duran collection is extensive to say the least – I think it’s fair to say, he probably has one of the largest DD vinyl collections in the world.

 

So, knowing that you’re all in safe hands, lets begin at the beginning. Sitting comfortably?

Planet Earth – 1981

 

With the release of ‘Planet Earth’ Duran Duran first set foot in the UK charts.

The single was released in February 1981 and peaked at number 12 in the UK charts.

Duran Duran Planet Earth Advert

The song was produced by Colin Thurston and marked the beginning of a remarkable and successful career for this fresh New Romantic band from Birmingham, England.

The single was backed with a non-album song ‘Late Bar’ which became a fan favourite deep track even upto today, except for the releases of Canada and the United States, where the album track ‘To The Shore’ was used for side B.

The British 7” release for the single was housed in a sleeve with a modern design by Malcolm Garrett who would become a long term designer for all sorts of Duran Duran items, including record sleeves and merchandise.

Unique custom designed centre labels were used, one with a red bar and light blue coloured block and one with a red bar and a mint green coloured block. Both versions came with a four spong centre. A version with a solid centre also exists but only with a red bar and a light blue coloured block.

Duran Duran Planet Earth 7″ Pressings

‘Planet Earth’ was released in several territories. Of course it was released in homeland UK and big markets like Japan, The United States and Italy but also in Australia, Portugal, The Netherlands, Germany, France, Spain, Ireland, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Canada, New Zealand, Argentina and Ecuador.

With this first single Duran Duran gained their first top 10 hit, where in Australia, ‘Planet Earth’ reached number 8.

Obviously the video accompanying this song contributed to the success. The video was directed by Australian filmer Russell Mulcahy, with whom Duran Duran would be working with over the next few years.

Planet Earth Worldwide 7″‘s

In all territories, where a sleeve was included, the same design was used – except for Spain and Japan. These two sleeves are quite different to the original design by Malcolm Garrett.

The sleeve of the 12” was completely different to the 7”. The picture sleeves were in different colours as were the Duran logo and titles.

Planet Earth Spanish and Japanese vinyl pressings.

For the 12” record Duran Duran recorded an extended version of Planet Earth and called it the ‘Night Version’. The UK was the only territory to release a commercial 12” of ‘Planet Earth’ until it was finally released in Greece in 1985 as part of a set of five reissued 12”s, which was sold in a unique canvas totebag with the 1985 Duran Duran logo.

The initial UK 12” pressing was sold with unique custom designed labels just like its little brother. But EMI had to press more copies than expected so this extra run was sold with burgundy coloured labels. Also some additional promotional 12”s were released and are not covered here.

Planet Earth Greek 12″ Totebag
Planet Earth UK 12″‘s

In the UK, Radio Stations were served with a few different promos. All were one-sided pressings and  housed in generic black die-cut sleeves, but either with blank yellow labels with a blue ‘Duran Duran’ stamp on it or with custom designed labels (blue square with red bar). Besides this variation the ones with yellow labels had either the shorter single version or the Night Version on Side One. The promos with the custom designed labels only have the single version.

Planet Earth 12″ UK Promos

Radio Stations in France were handed out a 12” Promo, containing both the single version as well as the Night Version. It was housed in a unique sleeve featuring the UK 7” sleeve design and a band photo. Many of these of these French promos were shipped to Australia, with an import-sticker attached and handed out to Radio Stations.

Planet Earth 12″ Promo

One of the most sought after items from the numerous ‘Planet Earth’ releases would be the promo 12” from the United States. This one has a completely different sleeve design. It shows the band standing on the moon with Planet Earth in the background. This vinyl has both the single version as well as the Night Version.

Planet Earth USA Promo 12″

Another ‘most wanted’ ‘Planet Earth’ vinyl is for sure the Japanese promotional pressing.

This promo, which is actually called ‘New Romantic’, is housed in a beautiful sleeve with a sublime band photo in black and white. One side has both versions of ‘Planet Earth’ and the other side has music from the band Kraftwerk.

Finding a copy in pristine condition is very hard and if one becomes available then it will be offered at a price of at least £750 but more likely around the £1000 mark.

Planet Earth 12″ Jap Promo

In 1983 EMI decided to re-release all Duran Duran 7” and 12” singles. Every release from ‘Planet Earth’ in 1981 to ‘Is There Something I Should Know?’ were pressed again and, provided with the original labels and housed in the original sleeves while stocks lasted.

Planet Earth Re-Issue Advert

When they ran out of stock they used generic black labels and generic black sleeves for the 7”s as well as for the 12”s. The 1983 reissue of the 7” for ‘Planet Earth’ had generic black labels and was housed in a generic black sleeve. The 12” however was issued in a reprinted laminated picture sleeve. The colouring is slightly different to the original 1981 pressing. The 1983 12” vinyl also has generic black labels.

Planet Earth 1983 Re-Issues

What was interesting is that the record company in the USA decided to put the Night Version of ‘Planet Earth’ on the debut album ‘Duran Duran’ instead of the shorter single version. Therefore the album track ‘To The Shore’, which was used as b-side, had to make way and was deleted in favour of the longer version of ‘Planet Earth’.

Another remarkable fact is that EMI in the UK made a little mistake when they released the double compilation album ‘Strange Behaviour’. This compilation album contains all of the extended versions that have been released on the 12” records. But instead of using the Night Version of ‘Planet Earth’ for this release, EMI used the Night Mix by mistake. This was a completely unknown version until that release in 1999. So fans and completists of Duran Duran were over the moon by this mistake. This new version is more than 30 seconds longer.

Planet Earth Hand Written Lyrics

Words by Peter Brinkhof // Edited by John Archbell // Images by Peter Brinkhof

11 thoughts on “Collectors Corner May 2020”

  1. What a fabulous site. It promotes great memories, very informative too for those who dont know much about DD.
    Well done John- really good job ❤️

    1. Glad you enjoyed it Ange! It was a gargantuan task. I’d been putting in 12 hours work a day. Crazy some would say! I’m really pleased with the results, although the site does need a little tweaking still.

        1. Of course – he knows that already. I’ve also found a very nice upgrade which i will be implementing tomorrow – a sliding menu.

  2. Now THIS is what I call a Collectors Corner! Very happy to see Peter in this position again.
    I recall we had a taste of these Planet Earth images and info awhile ago on DD Official, but this is 100 times better.
    Fantastic site launch (re-launch) John, I can see how much work you’ve put into this!

    1. Yes, I have put alot of work into it so I’m grateful you’ve recognised that. It’s the one good thing that has come out of the Coronavirus. I’ve used my time efficiently. Peter Brinkhof’s knowledge base is exemplary – I’m honoured that he is on board and my gratitude is immense. He has alot of patience – Collectors Corner has been in the planning for the last 2 years – I just couldn’t find the time to work on Duran Duran Rocks. Peter is where he should be. Collectors Corner was HIS brainchild at DDHQ Official and so it will remain Collectors Corner.

  3. Love it all so far. Great work! I love illustrated collector guides. Makes things so much easier to tell apart. A few of the images are a bit small, though. It might be nice to be able to zoom in more, once you click on them.

  4. Thanks John for all your hard work in making this site. And its nice to see Peter doing collector’s corner again. Good job!!

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