John Illsley

My Life in Dire Straits
  • My Life in Dire Straits

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    Some bands go huge - only a few stay huge.

    One of the most successful music acts of all time, Dire Straits have filled stadia around the world. Their album sales number the hundreds of millions and their music is still played in every continent today. Their songs were either the complete soundtrack or the background music for an entire generation. There was, quite simply, no bigger band on the planet throughout the eighties.

    In this powerful and entertaining memoir, bass guitarist, founder member and mainstay, John Illsley, gives the inside track on the most successful rock band of their time. From playing gigs in the spit-and-sawdust pubs of south London, to hanging out with Bob Dylan in LA, John tells his story - and the story of the band - with searching honesty, soulful reflection and great humour.

    He also pays tribute to the remarkable talents of Mark Knopfler, whose unique ability to connect with people from all corners of the world was so important to the success of the band. John's is the first - and only- inside account of this global music phenomenon and is a fitting celebration that will delight millions of Dire Straits fans.

John Illsley is an English musician who rose to fame as the bass guitarist of the critically acclaimed band Dire Straits. With Dire Straits, John has been the recipient of multiple BRIT and Grammy Awards, and a Heritage Award. As one of the founding members (with Mark Knopfler, his brother David and drummer Pick Withers) John played a major role in the development of the Dire Straits sound. When Dire Straits finished touring in 1993, John became involved in the art world. Having carved a reputation for himself as a painter, John had solo exhibitions in London, New York, Sydney and across Europe. He also co-founded the children's charity Life Education in 1987 which was recently integrated into Coram, one of the oldest UK charities. John also owns a pub, the East End Arms in the New Forest.

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