Duran Duran

Save a Prayer

Composed by Andy Taylor / Nick Rhodes / Simon LeBon

Song Review by

Dance-friendly items like "Rio" and "Hungry Like The Wolf" gave Duran Duran their chart breakthrough in the U.S. but they were also capable of making lush ballads guaranteed to make their fan base swoon. One of the finest, perhaps the finest, was "Save a Prayer," a lilting epic from Rio that has a special place in the heart of every Duran Duran fanatic. The lyrics revolve around a chance meeting between two people that flares into a love affair but ends all too soon: "Some people call it a one night stand/But we can call it paradise/Don't say a prayer for me now/Save it 'til the morning after." The music maintains the stormily romantic quality of the lyric by combining meditative verses with an aching chorus that swells and ebbs in a way that perfectly captures the song's heartbreak. Duran Duran's recording places an emphasis on Nick Rhodes' swirling, minimalist synth lines and Simon LeBon's pained vocals as the rhythm section holds down a steady but subdued beat, with Andy Taylor adding a few searing bursts of electric guitar during the chorus. The result was a stylish mood-piece that became a number two hit in the U.K. and earned plenty of airplay on MTV with a glossy video that featured the band jet-setting around the atmospheric locale of Sri Lanka.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Rio 1982
Rio
Rhino 5:33
Seven and the Ragged Tiger 1983 EMI
No Image 1983 Pioneer
Arena 1984 EMI-Capitol Special Markets 6:12
Sing Blue Silver [Video/DVD] 1984 Capitol
Notorious 1986 Parlophone
The Secret Policeman's Third Ball: The Music 1987
Various Artists
Virgin 5:05
No Image 1989 EMI Music Distribution / Capitol 5:27
No Image 1991 Golden Stars 6:29
No Image 1993 Capitol 5:33
Pop & Wave, Vol. 4 1993
Various Artists
Alex 5:25
That Loving Feeling, Vol. 5 1993
Various Artists
Dino Entertainment
Young at Heart, Vol. 1 [Sounds Direct Discs 1-2] 1993
Various Artists
Sounds Direct
Start: The Best of British Rock 1994
Various Artists
Dino Entertainment 5:25
No Image 1995
Various Artists
Universal Distribution
This Is the 80's [Alex] 1996
Various Artists
WEA International 5:25
No Image 1997 Capitol/EMI Records / CAP
Retro Lunchbox: Gooey Love Songs 1998
Various Artists
Intersound 5:24
Ultimate Dance Beat Collection: Durantastic 1998
Various Artists
Mastertone 5:45
Greatest 1998 Capitol / Parlophone / Warner Music 3:45
No Image 1998
Various Artists
Crimson Productions
Now: 1982 [2 CD] 1999
Various Artists
Virgin/EMI 3:45
Greatest Hits of the 80's [1999 Disky] 1999
Various Artists
Disky 5:26
Essential Eighties 2, Vol. 1 1999
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 5:25
Original Gold 2000 Original Gold (Netherlands) 6:12
The Essential Collection [EMI] 2000 EMI Music Distribution 3:45
Best of Romantic Rock, Vol. 2 2001
Various Artists
BMG Special Marketing 3:46
Classic Love Songs of the 80's 2001
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 5:25
Modern Rock: Love Songs 2001
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 3:48
Complete Collection 2001
Various Artists
Disky 5:26
Greatest Hits Video's 2002
Various Artists
Disky
Essential Eighties, Vol. 2 2002
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 5:25
The Greatest Pop Ballads 2002
Various Artists
Repertoire
Music of the Millennium, Vol. 3 2002
Various Artists
Universal Distribution
Totally Love 2002
Various Artists
EMI 5:28
The Singles 81-85 2003 EMI / Parlophone / Warner Music 5:29
Tokyo: July 12, 2003 2003 TheMusic.com 7:58
Almost There! CD1: A Collection Of The Greatest Original No. 2 Hits 2003
Various Artists
Disky 5:23
True Love [EMI Gold] 2004
Various Artists
EMI 3:46
Duran Duran/Rio/Seven and the Ragged Tiger 2004 EMI Music Distribution
The Singles 1986-1995 2004 EMI Music Distribution 5:26
No Image 2005
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution
School Reunion: The Smooches 2005
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 3:44
Another Lost Decade: The '80s Romance 2005
Various Artists
Time/Life Music 3:46
Greatest Pop Ballads, Vol. 2 2005
Various Artists
Disky
Relaxation [Disky] 2005
Various Artists
Disky
Young Hearts 2005
Various Artists
Disky 5:27
Live from London [Video] 2005 Zoe
No Image 2005
Various Artists
4:26
Retro: Active, Vol. 3 2006
Various Artists
Hi-Bias Records 7:20
101 80's Hits [EMI] 2007
Various Artists
Virgin/EMI 3:44
Prime 17: The Ultimate Love Album 2007
Various Artists
Direct Source 3:47
Pure: Soft Rock 2007
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 3:46
Playlist: Ballads 2008
Various Artists
EMD Int'l 3:45
DJ Selection: Love in the Dance Floor 2008
Various Artists
Do It Yourself
Slave To Love 2008
Various Artists
Somerset Entertainment 3:47
Smash Hits 1982 2009
Various Artists
Rhino / Warner Music 3:45
Original Hits: Love 2009
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 3:45
Hammersmith '82! [DVD/CD] 2009 Capitol/EMI Records / Capitol / EMI Music Distribution 6:24
True Love Songs [EMI] 2009
Various Artists
Virgin 3:45
Sing Blue Silver [2009] 2009 EMI Music Distribution
10 Great Songs 2011 Parlophone
The Brit Awards 2012 2012
Various Artists
Universal 3:46
Sight & Sound 2012 EMI Gold 6:12
The Biggest and the Best 2012 Music Club Deluxe 3:47
105 Friends '80: Gli Ottantoni Di Ross & Tony 2012
Various Artists
Time 5:28
The Love Song 2014
Various Artists
Rhino 5:29
'80s Love: The Collection 2015
Various Artists
Rhino 3:45
No Image 2015
Various Artists
Rhino 3:45
All by Myself, Vol. 2
Various Artists
Dover
No Image
Various Artists
Parlophone 5:33
No Image
Various Artists
Universal
Duran Duran/Rio/Seven & the Ragged Tiger/Big Thing EMI 5:26
No Image EMI Music Distribution
The 80s [EMI 1999]
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution
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