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Artist: Mark Knopfler

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Label: Warner Bros.
Album: Shangri-La
# Song Title   Time
1)    5.15 A.M.
2)    Boom, Like That
3)    Sucker Row
4)    Trawlerman's Song, The
5)    Back to Tupelo
6)    Our Shangri-La
7)    Everybody Pays
8)    Song for Sonny Liston
9)    Whoop De Doo
10)    Postcards from Paraguay
11)    All That Matters
12)    Stand Up Guy
13)    Donegan's Gone
14)    Don't Crash the Ambulance

Performer Notes
  • Personnel: Mark Knopfler (vocals, guitar, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, bottleneck guitar, Spanish guitar); Mark Knopfler; Paul Franklin (pedal steel guitar); Jim Cox (harmonica, melodica, piano, organ); Glenn Worf (bass instrument, upright bass); Richard Bennett (guitar, acoustic guitar, steel guitar, tiple); Guy Fletcher (piano, Fender Rhodes piano, harmonium, Clavinet, organ, Wurlitzer organ); Chad Cromwell (drums, percussion).
  • Recording information: Shagri-La Studios, Malibu.
  • Mark Knopfler's first excursions outside of Dire Straits were film soundtracks, where his guitar mastery served him well. Starting in the mid-1990s, he embarked on a proper post-Straits solo career. By the time of 2004's SHANGRI-LA, Knopfler had almost entirely left behind the expansive instrumental textures of his former band in favor of a more straight-ahead singer/songwriter approach, which works wonderfully here. Knopfler keeps things low-key throughout most of SHANGRI-LA, with quietly intoned, often drolly sardonic lyrics, supple finger-picked guitar lines, and songs full of subtly crafted surprises.
  • There's a wealth of unusual topics on offer here; "Boom, Like That" is a first-person monologue by Knopfler in the voice of Ray Kroc, the man behind the McDonald's fast-food empire. The bluesy "Song for Sonny Liston" chronicles the famed boxer's brushes with the underworld. "Donegan's Gone" laments the passing of British folk/skiffle pioneer Lonnie Donegan, a key influence on Knopfler and scores of other British rockers. Departing from the more folk-oriented sound of its predecessor, THE RAGPICKER'S DREAM, SHANGRI-LA more fully develops the detail-oriented, irony-laced songwriting style Knopfler first hinted at in Dire Straits tunes like "Money for Nothing."

Professional Reviews
Rolling Stone (p.102) - 3 1/2 stars out of 5 - "Mark Knopfler has grown into one of rock's more mature and sharp-eyed writers....[The album] mixes sunniness and darkness in artful ways."

Mojo (Publisher) (p.96) - 3 stars out of 5 - "There is genius in here....It also serves up three beguiling gasps of Tyne/Delta blues bewitchery."

Producer:Chuck Ainlay; Mark Knopfler; Chuck Ainlay; Mark Knopfler
Format:CD (0 Disc); Stereo
Studio/Live: Studio
Release Date:28 September, 2004
Guest Artist: Richard Bennett; Glenn Worf; Paul Franklin

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1 review(s)
All Reviews
graeme on
Mark Knopfler as well as a world class musician has the added ability as a great story teller and at his own admission cites the work of the master musician/storyteller Bob Dylan as part of his inspiration. Shangri-La is no exception. particularly notable is "Song for Sonny Liston" his ode to the great heavyweight. For me it was reminiscent in Dylan's great album "Desire" and the description of Reuben Carter in the track "Hurricane". Overall I really enjoy the album and it highlights Knopfler's ability to strike the elusive qualities of a musician/storyteller.

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