Mark Knopfler has got a new band together, but don't expect to see them all live together on stage anytime soon. It’s all for a new version of his “Going Home” hit. If the names of the stars he has recruited for the band are anything to go by, this is going to be some record release.
Knopfler wrote “Going Home” as the theme for the 1983 film Local Hero. It was the first of his now many film composer credits and became an in stage anthem when he performed with Dire Straits and later as a solo artist. It’s a wonderful tune with, as you’d expect where Knopfler is involved, some terrific guitar work. Well deserving of the BAFTA nomination it received.
Now Knopfler has worked with Guy Fletcher as producer to create a new nine-minute version of his classic instrumental theme. He’s recruited an absolutely phenomenal band of guitarists and others to make the record. More than enough great names to make your eyes water and your ears long to hear it being played.
They are releasing the new version, on CD formats and online streaming services, under the name of Mark Knopfler’s Guitar Heroes on March 15, pre-orders can be made online now. Knopfler has also got Sir Peter Blake of Sgt. Pepper fame amongst much more to design artwork for the release.
Mark Knopfler and the amazing guitarists involved
Before telling you more about the amazing band of musicians, it’s worth noting the record will raise money for two important charities. Teenage Cancer Trust in the UK and Teen Cancer America. There will also be eight guitars donated by their makers and signed by the musicians involved to add to the funds raised.
As the Standard reports, Knopfler himself is pretty stunned by the response and the many contributions, "What I really want to do, more than anything else, is just to thank each and every one for this sterling response. I really had no idea that it was going to be like this. It hit Guy and I quite early on that we had to extend this piece somehow, to take in the number of people who joined in. Before I knew where I was, Pete Townshend had come into my studio armed with a guitar and an amp.
"And that first Pete power chord – man, I tell you. We were in that territory, and it was just fantastic. And it went on from there. Eric (Clapton) came in, and played great, just one tasty lick after another. Then Jeff Beck’s contribution arrived and that was spellbinding. I think what we’ve had is an embarrassment of riches, really. The whole thing was a high point."
There’s a taster of just a few of the names involved, and what names they are in guitar terms. The Jeff Beck work is additionally emotional considering his death just over a year ago. Add to that, Ringo Starr and Zak Starkey on drums, Sting on bass, and then Roger Daltrey supporting the charity which is so close to his heart by playing harmonica in the introduction. Sounding amazing so far, isn’t it? And I haven't even mentioned David Gilmour yet.
Here’s a health warning about the next paragraph being a very long list of all the musicians contributing added below.
Joan Armatrading, Jeff Beck, Richard Bennett, Joe Bonamassa, Joe Brown, James Burton, Jonathan Cain, Paul Carrack, Eric Clapton, Ry Cooder, Jim Cox, Steve Cropper, Sheryl Crow, Danny Cummings, Roger Daltrey, Duane Eddy, Sam Fender, Guy Fletcher, Peter Frampton, Audley Freed, Vince Gill, David Gilmour, Buddy Guy, Keiji Haino, Tony Iommi, Joan Jett, John Jorgenson, Mark Knopfler, Sonny Landreth, Albert Lee, Greg Leisz, Alex Lifeson, Steve Lukather, Phil Manzanera, Dave Mason, Hank Marvin, Brian May, Robbie McIntosh, John McLaughlin, Tom Morello, Rick Nielsen, Orianthi, Brad Paisley, Nile Rodgers, Mike Rutherford, Joe Satriani, John Sebastian, Connor Selby, Slash, Bruce Springsteen, Ringo Starr and Zak Starkey, Sting, Andy Taylor, Susan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks, Ian Thomas, Pete Townshend, Keith Urban, Steve Vai, Waddy Wachtel, Joe Louis Walker, Joe Walsh, Ronnie Wood, Glenn Worf, Zucchero.
Yes, amazing is the word. What a star line up! Definitely looking forward to this one coming out.