News Archives: May 2007

Compiled by Terry Kilburn

New version, Brothers in Arms single – SAMA release

Update – 30th May 2007

Update – 14th June 2007

The new version of ‘Brothers In Arms’ is now available to download at the following sites:

PLEASE NOTE: At this time, the single is only available for download in the UK and Ireland.

A new version of the Dire Straits track ‘Brothers in Arms’ is to be released on Tuesday 29th May in aid of the South Atlantic Medal Association. The new version was recorded ‘live’ by Mark for the BBC in a one-take session at the Abbey Road studios in London. The release aims to raise funds to help take veterans of the early 1980s Falklands conflict back to the Falkland Islands, which has proved effective in treating the post-traumatic stress disorder suffered by many of those who fought in the war.


The release will be available as a digital download from sites such as iTunes. There will also be a limited number of CD format singles available from June 6th only from and Mark says “I’m touched that my song ‘Brothers in Arms’, which I wrote at the time of the Falklands war, has been chosen to support the many veterans who are still suffering from the effects of that conflict.”

To date, more veterans have died from suicide than were actually killed in the conflict with over 300 dying at their own hands. Many more have had their lives shattered by PTSD. Returning to the islands to lay their ghosts to rest has proven to be a remarkably successful journey in the treatment of PTSD. Of those who have returned SAMA know of no veterans who have subsequently taken their own life. The record will be released in the UK on the 29th of May 2007, the 25th anniversary of the British victory at Goose Green.


Today, June 14, 2007, marks the 25th anniversary of Liberation Day for the Falklands Island conflict. Remember to show your support to the veterans of this conflict by purchasing a copy of the rereleased ‘Brothers in Arms’ at any one of the various online retailers listed above.


Update: Tues 21st August 2007

Musicians on the track are:

Mark Knopfler (guitar & vocals)
Luke Brighty (guitar)
Marcus Cliffe (bass)
Danny Cummings (drums)
Guy Fletcher (keyboards)
Bobby Valentino (Violin & other strings)


Congratulations Mark! “Brothers in Arms” Voted the Second Greatest Album in Rock History

In a recent BBC poll, Dire Strait’s “Brothers in Arms” was voted the second greatest album in rock history after Bruce Springsteen’s “Born in the USA”. “Brothers in Arms”, which is also one of the all time best selling albums in the UK, beat out releases by Nirvana, The Clash, David Bowie and The Beatles. For a list of the BBC’s Top Ten greatest rock albums in history click here.


Gibson Guitartown London

Update – 15th June 2007

Mark and a host of other well-known British musicians such as Rod Stewart, Ronnie Wood, Paul Weller and Brian May, have joined forces with a number of British artists including Sir Peter Blake, Gerald Scarfe and Andrew Logan, to support Gibson Guitartown London, a major initiative launched in the UK by US guitar makers Gibson. The artists are busy painting thirty 10ft high fibreglass models of the Gibson Les Paul which will displayed close to London’s Tower Bridge for ten weeks commencing late June. At the same time, thirty standard sized, hand-painted Gibson SG models will be exhibited at The O2 in near-by Greenwich. Each of the model guitars is to be signed by an associated musician and auctioned, with proceeds going to support The Prince’s Trust , Nordoff-Robbins Music Therapy, and Teenage Cancer Trust . For more information on Gibson Guitartown London, please visit

One of the 10ft Les Paul models has actually been made by a group of inmates at Pentonville Prison in the UK under the art direction of Mike Cahillane of the prison’s Education Team. Calling themselves ‘the Ville Boys’, they worked in the Health Department of Pentonville to intricately design their 10ft Les Paul with a montage of images representing the influence of the guitar and artists over the years. Art plays an important role in the prison’s rehabilitation programme. Nick Leader, Governor of HMP Pentonville, said the project had been “a collaboration between the main prison and the Health and Education Departments …. We are using this work to encourage change through personal development by empowering the prisoners with necessary skills. This work helps boost self-esteem and confidence whilst nurturing creative abilities.”

Mark is a patron of the charity Music in Prisons and recently paid a visit to the prision to meet the Ville Boys and sign the model Les Paul at a specially arranged art exhibition. Mark says, “The guitar looks amazing and the inmates at Pentonville have done an incredible job to capture the spirit of the featured guitar legends, I hope the guitar sells well when it goes under the hammer.”


Mark Joins International Protest for Darfur

April 29th marked the fourth Global Day for Darfur and Mark lent his support by turning over one of 10,000 hourglasses filled with fake blood. The event was organized by a coalition including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch and called on world leaders to take “decisive action” over atrocities in Darfur. Other big name supporters of the protest included Sir Elton John, George Clooney, Mia Farrow and Mick Jagger. According to the United Nations, the conflict in Darfur has led to 200,000 deaths and two million people being displaced, although Sudan contests these figures, saying that only 9,000 people have died as a result of the conflict so far.