John Illsley Recalls Mark Knopfler’s Reaction to David Knopfler’s Departure From Dire Straits

Dire Straits’ John Illsley recently sat down with VintageRock Pod and talked about the first time David Knopfler left the band. When his feelings about the change in group dynamics was asked, he answered: “It’s unfortunate, but band dynamics change, and it’s extremely rare for a band to begin as a four-piece and end as a four-piece.” It was a rough period.” Illsley went on to discuss how he tackled this period in his memoirs, ‘My Life In Dire Straits,’ as well as the difficulties he had as a friend of both David and Mark Knopfler: “I dealt with it as best I could in the book because I was very friendly with David and obviously, Mark was about my great mate.” In many ways, dealing with the scenario was quite challenging.” He emphasized that the band had little choice but to make adjustments in order to move forward, and he acknowledged the emotional impact it had on both himself and Mark: “However, the band didn’t have much of an option.

The only way for the band to move forward and do what it could truly do, which we did, was for David to leave. And it was a very sad day for me, as well as Mark, that it didn’t work out. But, you know, that’s life, and these things happen.” David and Mark Knopfler have previously discussed their departures from Dire Straits. David Knopfler discussed his solo career and how he reacted while still linked with Dire Straits in an interview in July: “I created a separate, personal space for myself.” But if you go to an area you’ve never played before, or a place you haven’t been to in a long time, and they don’t necessarily know your solo material, you have to give them something so they can reference you. Because members of the audience will come because of the surname and because they are familiar with Dire Straits. Then they’ll know there was a guitarist in Dire Straits, but they’ll have no idea who he was.

Since then, I’ve released twenty albums.” When questioned about a possible reunion in a recent interview, Mark Knopfler stated unequivocally: “Oh, I’m not sure if I should start putting all that stuff back together again.” That is something I would only do for a good cause. I’m pleased I got to experience it all; it was a lot of fun, but I like things the way they are.” Mark has expressed his dissatisfaction with the place Dire Straits arrived before launching his solo career: “[Dire Straits] simply became too huge. If somebody can give me one nice thing about celebrity, I’d love to hear it.” The interview is available to view below.

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