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Mark Knopfler Shines in Santa Barbara Bowl Show

Former Dire Straits front man brings 7-piece band to sold-out performance

Mark Knopfler brought his seven-piece band to the Santa Barbara Bowl and unraveled a beautiful melody of tone and style
Mark Knopfler brought his seven-piece band to the Santa Barbara Bowl and unraveled a beautiful melody of tone and style (Steve Kennedy photo)

Mark Knopfler brought his seven-piece band to the Santa Barbara Bowl and unraveled a beautiful melody of tone and style.

The legendary guitar master and former leader of Dire Straits was out on tour in support of his latest solo effort, Tracker. The sold-out show was the perfect setting for a Sunday evening filled with hits and relics from Mark’s career.

Celtic folk rock influence was evident in the back beats and the unique variety of instruments played throughout the show. Between every song the band would bring out different arrangements of stringed and fluted instruments.

These arrangements were supported with two keyboard players, a pianist and an organ player.

Knopfler acknowledged the crowd with his dry, dead-pan personality remembering the two times he played the Bowl previously, once with Bob Dylan and once with Emmy Lou Harris.

This night was all Mark Knopfler. His smooth styles and clean tones were constantly a showcase as he moved through his sometimes mellow set.

The crowd really picked up the vibe during the classic “Romeo and Juliet,” and then the epic show closer, “Telegraph Road,” brought the crowd out of their seats to fill in the front of the stage.

The show wrapped up with an inspiring double encore, leaving smiles all around.

Noticeably missing from the set was the 1980’s MTV marquee song “Money for Nothing” and “Industrial Disease.”

Perhaps a nod to his age and the mellowing of his career like a fine wine.

Mark Knopfler’s Santa Barbara Bowl performance featured his smooth styles and clean tones. Click to view larger
Mark Knopfler’s Santa Barbara Bowl performance featured his smooth styles and clean tones. (Steve Kennedy photo)
Mark Knopfler enjoys a moment with the band and audience. Click to view larger
Mark Knopfler enjoys a moment with the band and audience. (Steve Kennedy photo)
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