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iTunes Review

After recuperating from a serious motorcycle accident, Mark Knopfler bounced back to release Shangri-La in 2004, and the veteran singer/guitarist/songwriter seems to have plenty to say here. Knopfler’s long-time affinity for American roots music is reflected in “Back to Tupelo” (a brooding commentary on Elvis and his handlers), “Song for Sunny Liston” (a salute to the legendary boxer carrying a bluesy sting) and “Boom, Like That” (a talk-sung sketch of a famous hamburger magnate). From the melancholy “5:15 AM” to the languid “Stand-Up Guy” and the shimmering, Latin-inflected “Postcards from Paraguay,” the songs take on the feel of a fiction anthology, with each lyric underscored by Knopfler’s deft, incisive guitar work. True, tracks like “Whoop De Doo” barely inch along, but sometimes the laid-back settings have a film-noir quality, as in the sinister “Sucker Row.” When he chooses, Knopfler can invoke the wry spirit of his Dire Straits days, as on “Don’t Crash the Ambulance.” Overall, Shangri-La is at once earthy and elegant, tinged with cool fire.

Customer Reviews


This is Knopflers best album including dire straits. Songs like Boom Like That, about Ray Krocks rise as owner of McDonalds to 5:15 AM to the title track. If you like Dire Straits, you will love this

A Must Have

As most people know, Mark Knopfler is one of the most gifted guitarists of all time. What sets Knopfler apart from other great players is the fact that he can write amazing songs. Mark Knopfler knows how to turn a phrase like nobody else. While you can still hear influences (Chet Atkins, The Everly Brothers, Bob Dylan, Hank Williams, etc...) Knofler proves (on Shangri-La) that he is clearly on top of his game. His playing and writting get better and better with age. Every record he has made has surpassed the one that came before. I still love Golden Heart, Ragpicker's Dream and Sailing to Philidelphia but Shangri-La raises the bar.


The man is a cultural treasure. Guitar licks to bring you to your knees with their pure soul and skill; a mind that understands American history and culture better than most Americans, and crafts sophisticated, subtle songs about them to boot; a voice that as intimate as a whisper over your shoulder. Every album he makes is an incredible gift. Miss none of them.


Born: August 12, 1949 in Glasgow, Scotland

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

The most celebrated British guitar hero to emerge in the 1970s and '80s, Mark Knopfler rose to fame as the leader of Dire Straits, and his songwriting and incisive guitar work played a decisive role in making them an international success story. At a time when punk and new wave were making technique for its own sake seem irrelevant, and metal was taking the guitar solo in noisier and unpredictable directions, Knopfler's clean but dexterous picking proved there was still room for traditionalism and...
Full Bio

Top Albums and Songs by Mark Knopfler

Shangri-La, Mark Knopfler
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