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Boomer Anthems: “The solo is the only reason aliens haven’t destroyed earth yet.”

In today’s Open Thread Neo notes – The first time I ever heard Sultans of Swing it was the studio version, but it was one of those songs that immediately made me stop what I was doing, pick up my head, and say, “What? What is that great sound?” I loved the studio version from the moment I heard it, but this live version is even better. Is that possible? Yes. As one YouTube commenter says: “The solo is the only reason aliens haven’t destroyed earth yet.”


She’s right you know. The solo…. the solo…. the guitar solo…. it will engulf you.

…We were so beautiful.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Francis W. Porretto August 18, 2021, 2:22 PM

    One of my first occasions of saying “This is musical magic” was with this Dire Straits track: https://youtu.be/QffRoK61W8U

    If the aliens do decide to do away with us, perhaps they’ll at least agree to save the collected works of Mark Knopfler somewhere, for a record of one of the few moments when one of us touched the sky.

  • Dirk August 18, 2021, 2:24 PM

    My first time, 1976/77 USN, knew then they were going big. Got most of their music. Had Talking Heads on the big stereo. Instinct changed to Dire Straits “ One Every Street.

    Whoever mixed this did an amazing job! The attention to DETAIL is amazing, pushing it thru stacked Klipsch Cornwalls, is pretty awesome.
    Thank you.


  • Terry August 18, 2021, 2:30 PM

    I have this on an album I just had to have way back. Fantastic recording. Master musicians, all.

  • ghostsniper August 18, 2021, 2:41 PM

    Roll them fangers bwah!
    That version is flat, couldn’t deal with it.
    But I was in the mood so…..
    ….I dropped the original vinyl and squeezed it through those historical HPM 100’s. dawgeez
    The mutt was terrified, looking at me around the corner.

  • LP August 18, 2021, 2:56 PM

    We were so beautiful…Yes! the look of pure enjoyment on those guys faces, and the energy they bring to their music is so beautiful to see.
    I’ve always loved Dire Straits, and their name is pretty cool too.

  • jwm August 18, 2021, 3:23 PM

    Just yanked back a handful of decades…
    I got tears.


  • Sisu August 18, 2021, 3:27 PM

    JWM, If only because how they looked … We looked. The memories triggered. … Where is everyone with my shared memories ? … And, who is that in the mirror ?

  • Mike Austin August 18, 2021, 3:39 PM

    Dare we forget Duane Allman? His solos…for the love of God his solos! “Blue Sky”, “Hot Lanta”, “In Memory of Elizabeth Reed”.

    Knopfler and Allman are proof enough that there is a God. And that He loves the guitar.

  • pbird August 18, 2021, 4:42 PM

    Faint! Swoon! Oy vey!

  • Anonymous August 18, 2021, 7:12 PM

    Agreed about Duane. Derek Trucks sure seems to have received a double portion from him somehow:

    Clapton with Allman Brothers in 2013 (Check out Clapton watching Derek at 8:00)

    Tedeschi Trucks Band Layla live
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dkhaMFSep0I (Derek tribute to Duane at ~7:00)

    • Mike Austin August 19, 2021, 12:41 AM

      Dear Anonymous:

      Thank you kindly for those guitar videos. And the solos! The solos!

  • Cris August 18, 2021, 7:13 PM

    Oops, Anonymous was me.

  • Rob Muir August 18, 2021, 8:25 PM

    Knopfler is such a musical genius. I’ve loved his music for 40-odd years now. In fact, about a month ago I could not stand being without the Alchemy Live DVD and ordered it. It arrived about a week ago and I watched it last Saturday while I was stringing a friend’s 12-string guitar.
    Pretty much anything he does is awesome, but the beautiful solo on the closing few minutes of Brothers in Arms always gives me chills and tears. If you haven’t seen the songs from his concert “A Night in London”, I can highly recommend that as well.
    I’ve also enjoyed Duane Allman’s music, and especially his solos, may he rest in peace. Blue Sky has always been a solo that moved me.
    If you haven’t seen the videos from Jeff Beck’s Ronnie Scott’s dates that is also some outstanding stuff. Both Knopfler and Beck play electric guitar largely without a pick. IMO, that’s what makes their music more expressive than most guitarists. Beck’s beautiful Where Were You is another tune that gives me chills and tears.

  • Andy Texan August 18, 2021, 8:38 PM

    Beautiful nostalgia. Great music video. Thanks for posting.

  • Steve in PA August 19, 2021, 4:06 AM

    And now Knopfler’s playing, “Cleaning My Gun.” Is there a message there?

  • Dave J August 19, 2021, 6:18 AM

    Expert Tone and Touch can truly be amazing. I specifically have preferred what the gifted like Mark K. can get out of a Fender. Strat or Tele – other examples of amazing T&T imho: Jimmy, Stevie, Danny G. One of the best I ever saw and heard in person who also didnt use a pick was Albert Collins. It is difficult to find a show recording with good sound quality of “Honey Hush” but if you have never heard it start here with a studio version: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KOU3Ysz1Lo0

  • Univ of Saigon 68 August 19, 2021, 6:22 AM

    Dire Straits. Somewhat off topic, but there used to be a DJ in Philadelphia – Harvey in the Morning – who did a feature called ‘Misconstrued Lyrics.” Example – Creedence: “There’s a bathroom on the right.”

    One of them was from Money for Nothing – “Money for nothin’ and your ‘checks’ for free”

  • Klaus August 19, 2021, 6:52 AM

    The epitome of being tight and they always were. I believe that’s his brother playing rhythm.

  • David Spence August 19, 2021, 10:45 AM

    That’s not his brother David, who left prior to that. It’s Hal Lindes on rhythm guitar, John Illsley on bass and Alan Clark on keyboards. The guy tearing up the drums is Terry Williams. Knopfler gets more sounds out of a Strat than anyone alive, IMHO. For those interested, his video on “Guitars” is terrific-https://youtu.be/OG__SwkV3wg.