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John Illsley of Dire Straits talks Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (Includes interview)

Aside from Illsley, the band members that will be inducted with him in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Class of 2018 include Alan Clark, Guy Fletcher, David Knopfler, Mark Knopfler and Pick Withers.

On his forthcoming induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with Dire Straits, Illsley said, “Well, I’m a little surprised as the band stopped making records 26 years ago, but very pleased for the band and all the people who have listened and loved the music over the years.”

Regarding the key to longevity in the music business, Illsley said, “Making music with songs that different generations can enjoy and engage with, some music somehow transcends time and nationalities.”

He shared that his proudest professional moments with Dire Straits include playing Live Aid in 1985, as well as the Concert for Mandela in 1989 in Wembley Stadium in London.

For aspiring musicians, the iconic bassist’s advice is as follows: “Find a way to communicate something of yourself to other people and practice a lot.

While it was a difficult choice to select a personal favorite song from the Dire Straits catalog, he picked “Brothers in Arms” as the song that stands out, and rightfully so.

On his plans for the future, Illsley said, “I am doing a tour in Holland and Germany next March with my band and preparing for an Art exhibition early next year. The painting is going well, but to quote a friend, it is a ‘difficult pleasure’.”

For Illsley, the word success is defined as the “Freedom to decide his next move.”

Regarding the impact of technology in the music industry over the years, Illsley said, “It just adds another dimension of production and delivery, but if you haven’t got a good song…..”

For the dedicated Dire Straits fans, Illsley concluded, “Thank you for going the journey with us, it has been a remarkable and exciting one so far.”

Written By

Markos Papadatos is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for Music News. Papadatos is a Greek-American journalist and educator that has authored over 16,000 original articles over the past 15 years. He has interviewed some of the biggest names in music, entertainment, lifestyle, magic, and sports. He is a five-time consecutive "Best of Long Island" winner, and in the past two years, he was honored as the "Best Long Island Personality" in Arts & Entertainment, an honor that has gone to Billy Joel six times.

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