The Who2 Blog

Mark Knopfler, Gettin’ Up There

That’s Mark Knopfler, performing at the Plaza De Toros De Las Ventas (“place of the sale of the bulls,” it seems to mean) in Madrid last night. Knopfler turns 61 next month — he was born on 12 August 1949.   

In Glasgow he was born, and I didn’t know that.  Those who enjoyed his soundtrack to the 1983 Scottish film Local Hero (and wondered, as I did, how he slipped into the Scottish musical dialect so easily) may want to read this interesting bit from Knopfler’s official site about his latest album, Get Lucky:

The closing piece is the moving ‘Piper
To The End,’ written for Mark’s uncle Freddie. He was a piper of the 1st
Battalion, Tyneside Scottish, the Black Watch, Royal Highland Regiment,
who carried his pipes into action and was killed with them at Ficheux,
near Arras in May 1940, aged just 20.

“I didn’t know him, of course, but I was close to my uncle Kingsley,
my mum’s brother. He first taught me to play the boogie-woogie piano,
and Freddie was Kingsley’s older brother. The pipes always made sense to
me, and growing up in Glasgow as well as Newcastle, in my grandmother’s
home, there were Jimmy Shand records, so the sound of Celtic music
always seems familiar to me.”

Another mystery solved.  That’s a great movie soundtrack, and Knopfler’s sure been making sweet music right along since I was a kid.  Here’s another shot from last night, with him looking a little more traditionally Knopfler-y:

(Photos: Sean Thorton/WENN)

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