Mark Knophler; recommended music??

Hi. I have been listening to music, mostly rock, for the past 35 years, but I'm fairly new to the high-end audio hobby. I have put together a very satisfying system consisting of an Arcam CD player; Cambridge Audio 840 upsampling CD player; Odyssey Audio Stratus Extreme amp; Parasound Line-Drive preamplifier, Meadowlark Shearwater "Hotrod" loudspeakers, and an RBH passive sub with outboard RBH crossover/amplifier. Audioquest solid core speaker cables and interconnects all around. Sound = phenominal. Now I need to discover additional artists and genres to better appreciate all this fine equipment. Thus far my favorite is Dire Straits, and surprisingly, Mark Knophler's solo work even more so. "Sailing to Philidelphia" and "Golden Heart" may be my two most-enjoyed discs now. Are there other artists out there with similar sound? I have discovered Diana Krall, and love her piano. Basically, I like jazz/rock/blues that emphasize percussion, acoustic guitar, and clean electric guitar (much like Knophler/Straits). Any suggestions?? Many thanks.
Since you like the sound of Mark Knophler, then you might like this person : Chris Rea

Here are some videos of his to give you an idea of his music : You might have heard this one.
Local Hero
What sets Mark Knopfler apart (at least for me) from other artists in the genre is his guitar playing, his songwriting, and his arangements. You may find others who have 2 of the 3, but not all 3 IMO.

If you like Sailing, and Goldenheart, you may as well buy everything else he's released. My personal favorite is "Shangri-la" but I enjoy everything he's done including some of his soundtracks.

I agree with Riley - Chris Rea is worth checking out.

Some others that come to mind that aren't necessarily like MK, but the music is the same mood, etc:
- Lyle Lovett
- John Prine
- Cowboy Junkies
Shangri-La is my favorite Mark Knopfler album.
Sailing Into Philadelphia is great
Knopfler is unique. I also like "Ragpicker's Dream".

Here's an idea. Go to, and create a new station using Mark Knopfler as the root artist. Listen to what comes up. I've discovered a good amount of new music using this method.
Interesting, Mark Knopfler has a website and the studio he built recently just won an award.

Razorlight debut album was recorded there.

Try also Tom Petty or Bryan Adams.

And I guarantee you that you will like Keb Mo'. Buy Keb Mo's Slowdown and Martin Scorsese Presents the Blues "Keb Mo's" - I am nearly 100% certain these will knock you dead for clean guitar and great blues which will sound good on your new awesome system.
Tvad...THANKS! I didn't know that you could do that. This is SWEET!!! I LOVE guys are GREAT!!!!
"Kill to Get Crimson" is Knopfler's newest album I believe.

You might also check out John Scofield. He's a bit more in the jazz realm but also plays great guitar. Start with the "That's What I Say" album which is Ray Charles songs.

Also check out the Bel Airs. They've got a great bar band sound with some good guitar playing. The Morells and Skeletons are also great choices. D. Clinton Thompson is the guitar player in both those bands and he can do some amazing things.

The Timbuk 3 albums also have Knopfler similarities you might like. I'd also third the motion for Chris Rea; he's got a great sound.

If you like the 50's R&R sound, the old Robert Gordon albums (from the late '70s) are great fun with some snazzy guitar work.
Love Knopfler's solo work and much of Dire Straits. He is a very unique artist. Nobody comes to mind off-hand as very similar really.

Have you ever spun any Chet Atkins disks? He was more of a country artist mostly but one of Knopfler's biggest influences as a guitar player. He did an album with Knopfler as well a while back. Check out one of the highly rated Atkins compilations or one of his early sixties RCXA Living Stereo recordings on original vinyl or CD remaster, like "Teensville", say.
Using Pandora always costs me $$$. Check out All The Roadrunning with Emmylou Harris.
04-17-09: Rwwear
Using Pandora always costs me $$$.

From the Pandora

Q: Is Pandora free?


Registering for Pandora will provide you with a free, advertising-supported
Pandora account.

We do also offer a paid Pandora subscription account option, but this is
entirely optional, and requires you to specifically choose to subscribe.

For more information about the benefits of subscribing, please see:

I used Pardora for six months for free and liked it so much I decided to pony
up the $36/year for advertising free content. Heck, cable TV costs me almost
$1200/year. In comparison, $36/year for something I use several hours a day
seems like a bargain.
I know it's free but the music it makes me want isn't.

Me too...
Warner Brothers in the mid 1970s had an acclaimed promotional arm, The Warner Record Show, that put out a series of live albums by up and coming artists, including Dire Straits and Talking Heads. This is the best sounding Dire Straits I have heard and culls out material from the first two albums. In a word, essential listening.
You must get Dire Straits- On Every Street. Every cut on this LP or CD is excellent. You will hear depth of soundstage, Soundstage width and height and most of all you will hear a presence of Mark Knopflers' singing that is so lifelike. Love over gold Private Investigations is another one that is great. The cut Private Investigations has a glass breaking near the last 4th of the cut. The glass will be to the left of the left speaker and it will sound like it's about 10 to 20 feet or more behind the left speaker. You will also hear Mark turning his head while he is singing. Don't be surprised if you actually hear him patting his feet on the floor. There is an organ that sits near the rear of the soundstage (near the center)that's there on both LP's. Both have wonderful soundstages and if you find "On Every Street" on vinyl you are lucky.

You must also have James Taylor Greatest Hits 1 and 2.
My first choice is vinyl. Don't be afraid to pick up some of your favorite acoustic guitar players. I would visit the Thrift shops and Fleamarkets and take a look around. You never know what treasures are there. Don't forget local record shows and record stores.
Chet Atkins/Mark Knopfler "Neck and Neck"
I think that All The Road Running which is by Knopfler and Emily Harris deserves a good long listen. Great guitar, amazing harmonies, thoughtful lyrics, flawless production. BTW I prefer the studio version to the live version which is Real Live Roadrunning.

There is another that has not been mentioned which is One Take Radio Sessions.
It is interesting to me that most everyone has selected a different album.

I will give my 2cents and vote for Local Hero as a very nice listen - the movie is must see viewing as well.

I know this is a post about similar artists but I can not think of any however, fwiw, he is excellent in concert.
My favorite is Knopfler with the Notting Hillbillies- "Missing ... presumed having a good time"

Decent recording and great music
Yep, Sailing into Philadephia is great. A little background vocals from James Taylor I believe also.
I love "Sultans of Swing" live on the Dire Straits album "Alchemy"!
For something else...I love the guitar solo on "Another Brick In The Wall (Part II)" by Pink Floyd. David Gilmour is great.
I Love Dire Straits. Other suggestions to try:

Mofro: Lochloosa
Gov't Mule: Dose
George Thorogood and the destroyers: the baddest of
Johnny Lang: Lie to me

All hard hitting and fun!
Many great suggesions here. Other MK albums not miss are his duo album with Emmylou Harris "All the Roadrunning," and the remastering of many of hits on "The Best Of Dire Straits & Mark Knopfler; Private Investigations." Superb sound quality.

Also, Highly recommended is the VHS version of Mark's "Knight In London" concert with much of the music from the 'Golden Heart" album, some Dire Straits standards with his new band with Richard Bennett, Glen Worf, etc. and a phenomenal version of Sultans of Swing with a breathtaking extended solo guitar riff toward the end of that cut. For some reason the DVD version of that concert foolishly left out Sultans of Swing on the disk; really shortsighted ommission of the producers. Also, surprisingly, the sound on the VHS version is far superior to the DVD.
You can usually find the VHS version inexpensively (>$10)online. If not, contact me at:
Sounds like we have similar musical tastes. If I hear from you I'll assemble a list of CD suggestions.
Great thread here. Thanks for the and Al Gore for inventing the internet. But as far as Knopfler goes.
Just start somewhere, you will eventually aquire anything he has done. Can't tell you which is my favorite, but my least listened to is probably "Golden Heart" and mood only is soundtrack for "Local Hero". Also look at his brother David's releases, "Lips against the Steel" is awesome.
Also look at his brother David's releases, "Lips against the Steel" is awesome.
good call. David Knopfler "Wishbones" is also excellent. As is the Notting Hillbillies release mentioned by Entrope.
Thanks for the heads up. have never heard of "Wishbones" the only other one I have is "The Giver". But Lips is my fav.
Try Gilmour's On an Island
Some of KnopFler's collaborations are really terrific. Two that come to mind are:
"Neck and Neck" (with the late Chet Atkins, 1999 Columbia)
"All the Roadrunning" (with Emmylou Harris, 2006 Warner Bros.)
Both of them have great sonics.
There's only one Mark Knopfler, he's unique. But try Allan Taylor, I love him very much. He's recordings are a pure audiophilic bliss.
Check out J.J. Cale

my thoughts exactly. All the way back to when Dire Straits first showed up, Knopfler has always made me progress to pulling out Naturally, or Troubadour. I have never thought he was trying to be Cale, but that early style always brought Cale to my mind. Since then I have found Knopfler's sound has become more distinctly his own.
Yes, J.J. Cale! When I listened to his last album ("Roll On"), on some tracks he sounds almost indistinguishable from Knopfler.
You should check out Harry Manx/Kevin Breit's latest cd "In Good We Trust" They are both gifted guitarists in the jazz/blues genre. Manx uses a lot of Eastern influences in his music and the end result when combined with Breit's haunting electric guitar is a very atmospheric like the best of Knopfler's work. This will bring out the best of your new system.
Picked up and listened to the Cale CD "5" today.

Good call. They do have a very similar sound!

I was very impressed with the album. Every song seemed to hold it's own well and a nice recording to boot!
mark and chet atkins have a great album
I bought Sailin into Philadelphia and Shangri La based on the reviews here. I prefer Shangri La because it has terrific guitar which seems to be highlighted where Sailing has more of a standard pop quality and the guitar is more subdued except for a few very tasty interludes which help this title greatly IMO.
Hi Phijolet,
I have both albums and IMO 'Sailing' may have the longer staying power.I got into the words and stories of that album.It grew on me over time.Both are great.If you're after Mark's guitar, try the soundtrack from 'Wag the Dog' which is mostly instrumental and spans alot of differing genres.
All you guys who love Mark Knopfler, check out Tony Joe White! I listened to his album 2006 "Uncovered" and it's so good! By the way this album features Mark Knopfler himself and J.J.Cale on some tracks.
All of it!
Yes, JJ Cale is a hidden gem. This tread prompted me to get out his "definitive collection" CD. Great laid back bluesy rock with a great groove. Good on a rainy day with nice glass of wine.
Each album is its own special journey. I love the stories in the songs (I am getting too old for teenage angst). Also, each time you listen to a Knophler song you are liable to hear something you did not hear before. His arrangements are very layered and nuanced which make each song seem like new each time you listen to it.
Ry Cooder, Jimmy Breaux, Phil Lynott may resemble Mark Knopfler in some ways...
Love Knoffler-Dire Straights. Most of it is well recorded and mastered also. You might like Dave Mathews Band. If you like acoustic give Jack Johnson a spin.
Nice thread.
This band is very similar to Mark Knopfler, in my opinion:
The Highwaymen (album 1985 "Highwayman").

Thanks for jogging my memory on that one!!
I was out of the country last year and a friend was playing this in his car, I saw it was the Notting Hillbillies and had never heard of them and my friend kept insisting it was Mark Knopfler, I just nodded my head but thought he was mistaken. Anyway, I have always wanted to pick it up but completely forgot until I saw your post.
My pleasure... one of the great things about the forums is picking up new and forgotten music
I'll put in a vote for his latest, "Get Lucky", but you can't go wrong with any MK mentioned.

Nick Lowe's "At My Age" is great too. Same genre, laid back, but not too far back and great sound as well.

James Hunter's "People Gonna Talk" is a really fun listen as well both sonically and musically.

Just realized all 3 are English, too. Happy listening! Pretty fun hobby, huh?