Ordinary World

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"Ordinary World"
Duranduran ordinaryworld.jpg
Single by Duran Duran
from the album Duran Duran (The Wedding Album)
B-side"My Antarctica"
  • 19 December 1992 (US)
  • 26 January 1993 (UK)
Recorded1991 at Privacy, London[1][2]
GenreAlternative rock
  • 5:39 (album version)
  • 4:43 (single version)
Duran Duran singles chronology
"Ordinary World"
"Come Undone"
Music video
"Ordinary World" on YouTube

"Ordinary World" is the first single from Duran Duran's self-titled 1993 album, commonly known as The Wedding Album. The single reached number one on the US Hot 100 Airplay, the US Mainstream Top 40, and the Canadian RPM Top Singles charts. It also peaked at number three on the Billboard Hot 100, number two on the US Modern Rock Tracks chart and number six on the UK Singles Chart.

The song won an Ivor Novello Award in May 1994. Lead vocalist Simon Le Bon sang the song with Luciano Pavarotti, in a War Child benefit concert.


By the early 1990s, Duran Duran's popularity had faded. Their album Liberty had proved a commercial failure, its two singles failing to make a significant showing on British or American charts. It was not until Capitol leaked "Ordinary World" to a radio station in Jacksonville, Florida in the second half of 1992 that it looked like Duran Duran mania might yet hit again. To their surprise, the single proved so popular that Capitol had to push the US release date up, ultimately releasing it in December.

The keyboards in the song were arranged and performed by Nick Rhodes and John Jones. The drums were played by Steve Ferrone at Maison Rouge. The guitar solo that characterizes this song was arranged and performed by Warren Cuccurullo, former player with Frank Zappa. His instrumental rock trio version became a staple of his solo shows and was included on one of his solo albums "Roadrage".

The music video was filmed by director Nick Egan at Huntington Gardens in San Marino, California and the song later featured in the soundtrack to the film Layer Cake in 2005.

Simon LeBon later performed the song with Pavarotti at a WarChild benefit.[3] The performance was released on home video as Pavarotti & Friends: Together for the Children of Bosnia.

The lyrics to "Ordinary World" were written by Simon Le Bon as the second of a trilogy of songs for his late friend David Miles; the others being "Do You Believe in Shame?" (1988) and "Out of My Mind" (1997).

Critical reception[edit]

In a retrospective review of "Ordinary World", AllMusic journalist Donald A. Guarisco praised the song for having what he described as "a warm ballad feel, matching elegant verses full of entrancing repeating-note hooks with a rousing chorus built on soaring runs of ascending notes." Guarisco described Simon LeBon's vocal as being "rich in emotion but tastefully restrained".[4]

Live versions[edit]

"Ordinary World" is one of two Cuccurullo-era songs ("Come Undone" being the other) which were played when Duran Duran did their reunion tour, both Andy Taylor and Roger Taylor insisting on playing it. Cuccurullo was brought in to teach Andy Taylor how to play it. It has remained in the set list ever since.

B-sides, bonus tracks and remixes[edit]

"My Antarctica", a song from the band's previous album Liberty, featured as the main B-side of the "Ordinary World" single.

Many other older singles were also used as B-sides. To capitalise on the success of "Ordinary World" and the new Duran Duran fans it was finding, EMI used the single's release to lure these new fans to the band's back catalogue. This mini-Decade was spread over the two CD singles released during the campaign.

Other mixes[edit]

There were several other versions of "Ordinary World" released:[5]

  • The "Single Version" or "Single Mix" was a differently mixed and edited version, sent to radio stations, used for the promotional video, and available on the CD single release in certain countries outside the US.
  • The "Acoustic Version" was more correctly the "Acoustic Mix" and was created using the studio guitar & vocal tracks and adding specially arranged string orchestration. An alternative live acoustic performance was recorded at the 15 May "No Ordinary Tour" live performance at Tower Records in Hollywood, which was simulcast to Hard Rock Cafés around the world. This live version was found on a number of "Ordinary World" releases outside the UK, most notably the Canadian and American cassette single and featured additional musicians, Gerry L and AD'A. It would eventually be released in the UK on the first CD single for "Come Undone".[6]
  • The "AC Edit" was featured on a US promo CD that came packaged with the Decade album.
  • A live version recorded on Simon Mayo's Radio 1 show featured as a B-side to the band's later 1995 single "White Lines".
  • An extended version recorded at Sony Studios in New York City for Hard Rock Live was included on a promotional 2-track CD in June 2000 by the band's new label Hollywood Records, running at 6:08.
  • Live version released on From Mediterranea with Love, a promotional EP digital release in December 2010

Formats and track listing[edit]

7": Parlophone. / DD 16 United Kingdom[edit]

  1. "Ordinary World" (Single version) – 4:41
  2. "My Antarctica" – 5:06

CD: Parlophone. / CD DDS 16 United Kingdom[edit]

  1. "Ordinary World" (Album Version) – 5:49
  2. "Save a Prayer" (Single Version) – 5:25
  3. "Skin Trade" (Radio Cut) – 4:25
  4. "My Antarctica" – 5:00
  • This CD comes in a 2-CD case that also houses CD DDP 16.

CD: Parlophone. / CD DDP 16 United Kingdom[edit]

  1. "Ordinary World" (Single Version) – (4:41)
  2. "The Reflex" (The Dance Mix-Edited) – (4:25)
  3. "Hungry Like The Wolf" (130 B.P.M. single version) – (3:25)
  4. "Girls On Film" – (3:30)
  • This CD was released as a picture disc.
  • This CD comes in a 2-CD case that also houses CD DDS 16.
  • The Dance Mix-Edited is the same version as the regular 7".

MC: Parlophone. / TCDD 16 United Kingdom[edit]

  1. "Ordinary World" (Single version) – 4:41
  2. "My Antarctica" – 5:06

CD: Capitol Records. / C2 0777-7-15894-23 United States[edit]

  1. "Ordinary World" – 5:39
  2. "My Antarctica" – 5:06
  3. "Save a Prayer" – 5:33
  4. "UMF" – 5:31

CD: Capitol Records. / DPRO-79607 (Promo) United States[edit]

  1. "Ordinary World" (Single Edit) – 4:28
  2. "Ordinary World" (AC Edit) – 4:31
  3. "Ordinary World" (Acoustic Version) – 5:05
  4. "Ordinary World" (LP Version) – 5:39
  • Two-disc US compilation promo. Second CD is Decade. Housed in exclusive sleeve.

MC: Capitol. / 4KM 0777-7-44908-49[edit]

  1. "Ordinary World" – 5:39
  2. "Ordinary World" (Acoustic version) – 5:05
  3. "Save a Prayer" ('Till The Morning After) (Live) – 6:11
  • Also released in Canada (Capitol / C4-44908)
  • Track 3 is from the album Arena.

12": Parlophone. / 8-80457-6 Italy[edit]

  1. "Ordinary World" (Single Version) – (4:41)
  2. "Save a Prayer" – 5:33
  3. "The Reflex" – (4:25)

CD: part of "Singles Box Set 1986–1995" boxset[edit]

  1. "Ordinary World" (Single version) – 4:43
  2. "My Antarctica" – 5:00
  3. "Ordinary World" – 5:49
  4. "Save a Prayer" (Single Version) – 5:25
  5. "Skin Trade" – 4:25
  6. "The Reflex" (7" Version) – 4:25
  7. "Hungry Like the Wolf" – 3:25
  8. "Girls on Film" – 3:30

Other appearances[edit]

Apart from the single, "Ordinary World" has also appeared on :





Additional musicians[edit]

Charts and certifications[edit]

Cover versions[edit]

"Ordinary World"
Single by Aurora featuring Naimee Coleman
from the album Dreaming
Songwriter(s)Duran Duran
Aurora singles chronology
"Hear You Calling"
"Ordinary World"
"The Day It Rained Forever"

Charts (Aurora version)[edit]

Chart (2000–2001) Peak
Germany (Official German Charts)[28] 47
Ireland (IRMA)[29] 6
Ireland Dance (IRMA)[30] 2
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[31] 4
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[32] 5
UK Dance (Official Charts Company)[33] 5
US Dance Club Songs (Billboard)[34] 37


  1. ^ "Reflections on Duran Duran's "The Wedding Album"". Duran Duran. 20 February 2013. Retrieved 14 March 2019.
  2. ^ "Popklassikot 1993: #3 Duran Duran – Ordinary World / Nuorgam". Nrgm.fi. 28 October 2012. Retrieved 14 March 2019.
  3. ^ Richard John. "Duran's new tour to feature surprises". Canoe.ca. Retrieved 12 January 2014.
  4. ^ Donald A. Guarisco. "Ordinary World: Song Review". AllMusic. Retrieved 12 January 2014.
  5. ^ "Tom McClintock's Duran Duran discography" (PDF). (216 KB)
  6. ^ The Duran Duran Timeline: 1993
  7. ^ a b c d e f "Ordinary World", in various singles charts Lescharts.com (Retrieved 7 April 2008)
  8. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 100235." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 6 April 2018.
  9. ^ "Top 10 Denmark" (PDF). Music & Media. Retrieved 22 March 2018.
  10. ^ "Single top 100 over 1993" (PDF) (in Dutch). Top40. Retrieved 15 April 2010.
  11. ^ "Duran Duran singles, German Singles Chart" (in German). musicline. Retrieved 17 April 2010.
  12. ^ Irish Single Chart Irishcharts.ie (Retrieved 7 April 2008)
  13. ^ Italian Single Chart Hit parade Italia (Retrieved 30 May 2008)
  14. ^ UK Singles Chart Chartstats.com (Retrieved 7 April 2008)
  15. ^ "Duran Duran Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved September 15, 2017.
  16. ^ "Duran Duran Chart History (Alternative Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved September 15, 2017.
  17. ^ "Duran Duran Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard. Retrieved September 15, 2017.
  18. ^ "Duran Duran Chart History (Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved September 15, 2017.
  19. ^ "The RPM Top 100 Hit Tracks of 1993". RPM. Retrieved 6 April 2018.
  20. ^ "Top 100 Single-Jahrescharts". GfK Entertainment (in German). offiziellecharts.de. Retrieved 26 July 2016.
  21. ^ "Top 100-Jaaroverzicht van 1993" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40. Retrieved 26 July 2016.
  22. ^ "Jaaroverzichten – Single 1993" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 26 July 2016.
  23. ^ "Top 100 Singles 1993". Music Week: 24. 15 January 1994.
  24. ^ "Billboard Top 100 – 1993". Retrieved 27 August 2010.
  25. ^ "British single certifications – Duran Duran – Ordinary World". British Phonographic Industry. Select singles in the Format field. Select Silver in the Certification field. Type Ordinary World in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.
  26. ^ "Best-Selling Records of 1993". Billboard. BPI Communications. 106 (3): 73. 15 January 1994. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved 4 May 2015.
  27. ^ "American single certifications – Duran Duran – Ordinary World". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH. 
  28. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Aurora feat. Naimee Coleman – Ordinary World". GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  29. ^ "Chart Track: Week 37, 2000". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  30. ^ "Top 10 Dance Singles, Week Ending 14 September 2000". GfK Chart-Track. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  31. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  32. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  33. ^ "Official Dance Singles Chart Top 40". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  34. ^ "Aurora Chart History (Dance Club Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved 29 May 2019.

External links[edit]