The secret at the heart of Dire Straits revealed.

In 1975, a chance meeting between  (penniless poet/lyricist Robert Marshal) and bass player John Illsley in a coffee bar in the West End of London led directly to the creation of a band who became one of the most successful acts of the 1980’s. His story has never been told until now.

Back then, Dire Straits wasn’t a band, it was the state of both the UK and also of , an Edinburgh lyricist and poet, hopeful for success in the music industry. He had ideas, good lyrics, and a wealth of street aptitude, and had been mixing with well known musicians in London for several years, looking for a break.

Illsley was aspiring to be a musician and invited Marshal back to a house in Deptford as he had promised him some incredible lyrics. Shortly after they arrived, Mark Knopfler ( introducing himself as Dirk)walked in and he and Marshal spent the next 10 hours thrashing out songs on an old bass with two strings. They took turns  strumming the bass and chanting Marshal’s  lyrics in a rhythmic fashion, Marshal being no musician but a talented wordsmith rapped of the hooks as  Knopfler scribbled down the words in shorthand as one after another story that would become songs were  reeled them off. These words eventually formed the debut Dire Straits album (including Sultans of Swing) and most of the Brothers in Arms album including “Money for Nothing” which Knopfler recorded on a tape machine just as he was about to leave.

These lyrics were crafted on the spot during one mammoth session and are based upon Marshal’s extensive  experiences of London, where he worked as a barrow-boy in Berwick Street, a bus driver on the number 19 bus, and was squatting in a house in Bow when he met Knopfler. He showed his mastery  at writing lyrics by mixing  in that days experience of his meeting with Illsley and Knopfler, a chance meeting that became (“Wild West End”). He gave the stunned Knopfler a songwriting masterclass, a mentoring session and before he  left, gave the band to be the name “Dire Straits” before disappearing into the night. As he left, John Illsley had just about time to scribble down his name and the words “Straightjacket Music” for any share of  monies should the band be formed and have any  success. He believed the lyrics he had written could only have filled a good sixteen song L.P, and told Knopfler and Illsley not to use Money for Nothing. Of course they did and though it became one of the greatest hits, with Knopfler trying to inveigle Sting to take the credit for writing the lyrics with him it didn’t happen…  but Marshal never received the credit for writing the lyric or any share in the money it made, however British Grove Studios was built on the capital from Straitjacket Music.

Though Marshall has spoken to both Mark Knopfler and John Illsley, they have yet to make public his part in Dire Straits, and since there has been no denial from them or Libel suits its obvious he is telling the truth.

The Law on Admission States.

An admission may be express, such as written or verbal statement, by a Person concerning the truth, or it may be implied by a Persons conduct. If  someone fails to deny assertions which, if false, would be denied by any reasonable Person, such failure indicates that the Person has accepted the truth of the allegations.

Today, Marshal still writes lyrics,  poetry, plays, novels and radio stories under a variety of pseudonyms, but he still has hope that one day, Knopfler and Illsley will acknowledge what he has done for them make amends.

Dire Straits Album Wins

The few that have remained faithful to Mark Knopfler on the Amarkintime blog, after finding he didn’t write the lyrics on the first Dire Straits album had a poll on the blog to find which of the D.S. albums was the best, and the first album won. I’d like to think Mark reads or takes notice of what his fans think, for when I made the suggestion of starting a band called Dire Straits and writing the lyrics for that said band, I didn’t do it to forward one person’s career or their ego, it was to form a rock band that could be as one no matter where they were placed in the line up, and for a while that was what happened, and though the lyrics on the other albums didn’t give the same message as to what I’d written, for a time that possibility was always on the books, until the demise of David Knopfler and Pick David Withers.

And if there was any messages within the new band members, it was to grab as much money as possible, every album with the next line up was dictated like a sweet shop, to make the mouth water, but never to get the taste that was advertised, that would come with the next product, and until the Brothers in Arms album, with most of the lyrics written by me, that satisfaction was finally reached, but Knopfler and Illsley had used up their private stock the cupboard like old Mr Hubbard was bare, and even if it could be filled from the archives of the deep cellars of the P.R.S. vaults, the ingredients that brought the success my lyrics were missing. And since Mark was not going to lose face by calling me back into the game, as his own lyrics had not reached the peak that mine had, he used his get out of jail card, and went solo. The music business is a jealous game, but committing suicide when there is a way out to me doesn’t make sense, he’s a great guitarist and as I said at the beginning, it was a group thing, the ladder upwards was for them all, and the first album where they all gave their all proved that, and that was why it won the poll.

I seem to have upset the I LOVE MARK KNOPFLER members of amarkintime the few remaining stalwarts who keep that blog running, like a club that lost its values years ago, and hide their true identity by using pen names, just in case they have to go back to being a normal person rather than a obsessed fan. At first when I started my blog they claimed Knopflers lawyers would have a field day with this guy who claims he wrote the lyrics of the Dire Straits album, and worse gave the band its name, and what happened nothing because what was written was the truth, but did that change their minds no, now its a mental health problem or that I’m living on a different planet, and that is coming from people who allow themselves to deny that most of the comments on the blog come from one person who uses various names. I’d have thought the first thing any fan of of Dire Straits would have wanted to know was, did this guy really write the lyrics for the D.S. album, and why is he being denied his rights like a victim of a conspiracy of a fraud, but we are talking about Mark Knopfler fans who think its marvellous that their hero has donated some of his many guitars to something like Reprieve, when in reality he has given nothing to any charities other than from the money he has swindled from me, so where are the Lawyers you thought would discredit me, probably laughing all the way from the bank of Mark Knopfler.

And right on queue the person with to many identities on the amarkintime blog who likes to comment and answer his own questions, and has two many guitars comes on the scene, Chris Finucane barred from Facebook for identity theft, and a lot of other blogs, who has hounded and trolled a Brownie pack leader, and still does, and brought fear to a woman with three children, and uses their names to annoy me when he sticks his vile comments on this blog, and says he got the police to me for threatening him, the only contact the police have had with me was to report him for his vicious and degrading emails that go directly to them. I also reported him to his work place in Tadley, for I couldn’t believe a person of his character was being left in charge of children with mental impairments, they told me he was a good worker and what he did in his own time, sending vile emails had nothing to do with them, so I told them Fred West was a good worker and if someone had reported him for what he was doing in his own time, perhaps a few of the woman he murdered might have been saved. And usually people who have numerous email addresses like he has on amarkintime is for gaining access into porn sites, and as he quoted on his first attack on me, ” I was searching through the web looking for porn, and came across this blog,” so he grassed himself of and his credibility is zero, and through his numerous pen names on amarkintime, its credibility is zero for still allowing him to comment. And if any of the so called fans of Mark Knopfler had been at the plaque unveiling in Deptford they’d have seen me speaking to their hero, and also refusing to be photographed with him and Illsley due to Illsley’s behaviour when |I met him at St James where he was selling a painting for charity. This blog was started to show Knopfler and Illsley, that due to the internet they can run but not hide, there has been over two million hits on this blog, and apart from people like Finucane, what I’ve said has been taken for gospel and it’s up to Knopfler and Illsley to respond, and since the law in this country does not accept silence from the accused as a sign of being not guilty, it verifies my case against them and I will take this blog down if they eventually come clean about my part in Dire Straits. I don’t know the reason why they have chosen to go with this silence, as it has only hurt their reputations, if Illsey had corresponded with my lawyers in a normal manner instead of trying to twist the truth, that has bounced back at him, I know this state of affairs would never have happened. Robert Marshal

Gentleman’s Agreement’s Beware

Be aware when you make a Gentleman’s Agreement with someone, that they are a Gentleman and they wont stab you in the back when you ask for whatever was agreed on to be returned in full. For even the hardened Mark Knopfler die hard are starting to get the gist of why their hero has turned away from being a nice guy into a miserable bread head, that wants to get every penny due to him from the Dire Straits Legacy, and like his best friend Illsley wont even invite the guy who named the band, and wrote the lyrics of the hit songs of the original Dire Straits, into their company for a cup of tea?

And the die hard are right, when I met Knopfler and Illsley money wasn’t the problem, that came when it flooded in from the Dire Straits album, the heads swelled and they began to believe the could have anything they wanted, and they did there best to prove they could. First came the flash cars, then the houses, then for some reason marriages to woman that wanted the best, and they’d make sure they got it. And with it the old story you take it with one hand, and give it back with the other, and Knopfler married again, could he afford another debit card, only if he fiddled the books and in Robert Allan, photo above, he had the best twister in the Law business, and he didn’t come cheap, and he was there to do a hatchet job, just like Beeching did for the railways, any trains lying idle in the siding’s would be scrapped and any line not making a profit axed, and he did such a good job he was thanked on the Dire Straits album.

The album with all my lyrics on it, I still don’t know if his name was put on the album for me to get in touch with him to claim my share of the monies, as that was when I could have made a move before the Limitations Act of six years was yet to expire. But and its a big but, I had a Gentleman’s agreement with Knopfler and Illsley, and that expiry date was when Dire Straits were no more, and they kept reforming, every time the river money dried up. And I take it that Robert Allan was fed up looking at the cheque with my name on it, just gathering dust in a drawer, and after all Marks marriages, the mansions, the cars the children were all costing money, and the six years had passed so I’d have trouble proving my case, and I’d doubt if my former cohorts of Knopfler and Illsley, would have taken my corner, they were living in the world of Money for Nothing, when Robert Allan erased the name of Robert Marshal from the Dire Straits log book, and anyway it was just a Gentleman’s Agreement, so beware Gentlemen if you are a Gentleman.

Fans of Mark searching for the Truth and its all here?

You may get some kind of inspiration from reading a book, but a Poet or lyricist seeks the truth through experience, and that is the difference in what is seen through the eyes of a observer studying a painting, and the artist who painted it.

And that is why the fans of Mark Knopfler who still presume that he wrote the lyrics of the Dire Straits album, keep fumbling about in the dark when they try to join the dots of Knopfler’s life to the story within the lyrics, Deptford is near the docks so he got his inspiration for “Down to the Waterline,” from there, or perhaps Newcastle having the river Tyne gave him the picture to construct what is a good lyric.

Absolute rubbish when I came out the Army, I trained on the SS Vindicatrix in Sharpness as a deckhand in the hope of joining the Merchant Navy, I also sailed on the Fishery Cruisers from Greenock to Iceland, and did a trip on a Fishing Trawler from Leith Docks, so if Mark Knopfler watched the boats sailing by, I was on the deck of them, and Dog Leap Stairways was the only part of the lyric he suggested, and he changed Fire Flies to Pilot lights.

I also squatted in a multi storey in Limehouse another dockland area, I was on the the eighth floor over-looking the Thames, and the boats with their coloured lights were hypnotic sailing up the river in the darkness, so I really feel for the fans that are still hunting through the scraps of information to solve the puzzle that Mark has kindly given them, however until they start believing that it wasn’t Mark Knopfler who wrote the lyrics to the Dire Straits album, this is one crossword they will never finish, but if they want the truth, its all here for Mark was the musician and I was the lyricist. Robert

Brian Johnston Interview the No’s Has It


Age causes lots of problems and one of them is forgetfulness, but when your being irresponsible with the truth and saying it on a televised show, then that is just being totally stupid, so for God’s sake Mark don’t relate a fictitious story that can be dissected like the alien autopsy. I’ve listened and watched closely since the Dire Straits album was released the way you have played Sultans of Swing, at first you put your all into the words and music, then it become boring probably due to the fact you couldn’t get a song with the lyrics you’d written to be as popular, so you just went through the motions including words of your own to break the monotony, something that would never have happened if the work was written by you, for a artist would never take the piss out of their own creation.

Another mistake you made was so obvious it actually made me wonder if you do research the lyrics you claim you have written, or have someone do it for you, for I know the P.R.S. archives are full of lyrics whose writers have passed on years ago, and I’m saying that because you definitely haven’t a clue about Creole music, and I’ll quote the line, “And the Sultans played creole,” Creole Mark is a French and Black form of music from Louisiana in America, and the instruments they play are a Mouth Box, Cigar box Fiddle, Vest Washboard fiddle, Mandolin and Accordion and Bass Guitar, I’d not only say hearing a band playing Creole in this country is as rare as a Dragons tooth, but I’d have thought a privilege to hear. Almost as hard to find as someone wearing Brown Baggies in the London scene, unless they’d travelled down from Manchester, eh Mark.?

Brian Johnston isn’t a Andrew Neil and swallowed the guff you spouted like a English breakfast after fasting on toast for a week, “I was in a pub in Deptford, there was a band playing Creole a couple of guys were at the pool table, I had a couple of pints, then a guy went on stage and said something like, now its time to go home, thank you the Sultans of swing, oh and there was a Saxophonist, they weren’t very good,”..

Come on Mark if your just making up story’s to justify why your claiming the royalties for lyrics you didn’t write, make sure what you’ve said cannot be found out to be what it was a load of bullshit, I’ve had two million hits on my blog, and Dire straits have sold perhaps two hundred million records if not more, plus they are one of the most well known bands in the world. So before you came out with that feeble delivery on how the lyrics of Sultans of Swing were formed, didn’t you think if there was a group called Sultans they’d have a genuine claim for using their name, and the barman who served you the two pints, he’d remember you and them, for they obviously had a contract, then there was the pool players, and I take it the groups friends, and perhaps a couple of locals, they would all have remembered that night in Deptford, just like you did, especially after you made them all famous by telling that story, and it really is just a story Mark, for you were there when I wrote the lyrics, and the only time I was in a pub in Deptford was after you allowed John Illsley to embarrass me after the plaque unveiling. So lets see if you remember this quote you made?

I don’t like definitions but if there is a definition of freedom, it would be when you have control over your reality to transform it to change it rather than have it imposed upon you. You cannot really ask for more. I’m sorry Mark the way I see it and I’m sure a lot of Dire Straits fans do as well reckon you have already lost control and we are not wanting fables, or you becoming a Boris Johnston of spin, we gave you respect so we are entitled to the same, or do you believe for some reason its just a one way street only for Mark Knopfler. Robert Marshal

Apology to Mark Knopfler

People have been asking why mark Knopfler, who introduced himself as Dirk to me when we first met, suddenly after sending me a link to his email address and for some reason still calling himself Dirk and after many emails mostly from me, suddenly went silent?

At first I thought he thought I was going to send him lyrics, that could have been true for when I met John Illsley, he said, ” He didn’t know why I’d got in touch,” so I do think they were expecting something from me, and as I have already said, you may be a super star, but your a human being first, and Illsley wont speak to anyone who knew him before the Dire Straits era, and if you go to one of his gigs you will find that is true. And the way he has treated me he must have forgotten that because of me he’d still be staring out of a cafe window, wondering how to live of a State Pension.

Anyway back to Marks reason for stopping our correspondence on the Web, I was going through the emails I’d sent him, and found what I think may have challenged his ego, and caused the silence, the computer I had at the time was not recognising the name Dirk, so every email I’d sent him was to a Dick, and that may have got his heckles up, so I apologise for that, but over the years I’ve called him and Illsley worse than that, but being a Dick may have struck the six blade knife syndrome. Robert Marshal

Pick Withers in Dire Straits Again

When you eventually get someone from the start of the Dire Straits era to discuss their part in the bands history, the six blade knife comes out, “He’s a weirdo” the guy who discussed on amarkintime about getting my blog hacked and removed from the internet said, others say Pick has developed a deliberate forgetfulness about songs they believe rehearsed and were hidden away in Mark Knopflers cuboard, maybe the same drawer he produced my lyrics from to fill the Brother in Arms album.

However I can say without hesitation Sacred Loving was never sent as part of the Dire Straits album to be reviewed by Charlie Gillet, for the one part of the agreement Mark did keep was the only lyrics that were to be on the D.S. were mine, and if you have listened to any of the songs he and David wrote singly or together before the band was formed, where would they have fitted in, I’ve listened to them and its like chalk and cheese they don’t mix, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t try it, and found it didn’t work, that was why the album Communique was released like a dog out of the traps to get his own songs and lyrics onto vinyl.

Picks hesitancy to discuss the deeper questions are not down to duplicity, its because he and David were not in the know about my lyrics, and why should he be, in the book of Mark he was just the drummer, just like David was just his younger brother, it was Illsley and Mark who were pulling the strings, and to make it work Pick was made to sign a clause where the monies like Royalties would compensate in case any disagreement about trivia like Plagiarism arose, something he had never experienced in all his time in the business, but it worked, but again Pick was the drummer and a good one not a conspirator. So be thankful the bloke agreed to the interview and seems to have given us more information about his time with the band, good and bad, than Illsley seems to have given the writer of the book of fiction about dire Straits, yes the same one who run to Illsley to do something like write a book about himself, something the editor said would be full of puns, if he thinks getting ripped of is funny it will be hilarious. And heres another one Bob Dylan has just sold the rights to his songs lyrics and music to Universal, Mark Knopfler sold the lyrics of everything I wrote years ago. If Picks gig gets going in the new year I will be making a determined effort to attend, so I hope you will make it too and watch a master at work. Robert marshal

Mark Knopfler a Musical Magpie

So the post-mortem of Mark Knopflers musical abilities has been started by the die hard few at Amarkintime, who due to the lack of news from the Knopfler press core, have had time to dissect and scrutinize the music the guitarist has played on his solo albums. And like Vultures that need fed after the feasting has left their belly’s empty, their hunger is so strong that they look for some kind of satisfaction gnawing on the bones of the silent victim, who if by some miracle rose from the grave and plucked a D note from his red guitar would scatter his underfed fans back into the music stores to buy his new album, whether it had the semblances of Clapton Pink Floyd, Bill Hayley or Bob Dylan, within the chord structure, and when you have so little notes to work with, your obviously going to trespass into some other musicians music, that did the same to another’s work style.

What I resented of this attack on Knopfler, was that some of those who made comments on What Song Would You Skip, were being asked to make a judgement on Mark’s songs since he went solo, and since he’s written more songs than he ever did with Dire straits, there was plenty to choose from, and since most of those who did comment were the ones who made it clear they didn’t and probably still don’t believe I wrote the lyrics on the D.S. album, their loyalty to M.K. is as thin on a water dish left out in winter for the birds. One of them wrote a book about M.K. and Dire Straits, and said he got a interview with John Illsley, if that was the case he’d have included my part in Dire Straits, for if I’m not in it, then its fiction and not fact. Of course he was the person who suggested that they should get a hacker to erase my blog from the Web, and his co conspirator was a person who has numerous accounts on Amarkintime, that he appears with a new one and no one seems to notice, even though he answers and questions himself. So if Mark is slumbering like a old grandfather on the couch and its his red guitar that slides to the floor, lets be thankful that its not a joint for the house we want him to burn down is the Albert Hall, and though he’s seventy bringing the real Dire Straits together again, would be the finale that the real fans are waiting for, and the sham dissectors could put away their scalpels, and listen to the four musicians that started a band that doesn’t want the Vultures coming down from the trees. Robert Marshal

Love Over Gold


In the lyrics of Love Over Gold Mark Knopfler states it takes, ” Mind over Matter,” to get you back to reality and your feet back on the ground.? At his last gig in Edinburgh, there’s a lane that runs down a slope next to the Playhouse Theatre across from the hotel I’d been staying in.

I saw that a small crowd had gathered at one of the stage doors so crossing over Leith Street I sauntered down the cobbled back street, that as a child I’d used to get to the Calton Hill. With the memories in my mind of the old tenements now gone at the bottom of the lane, I saw a black limousine turn the corner and head up the hill towards the group a mixture of about twelve adults and children. Myself having not quite got to them the car passed and stopped directly in front of me, the driver door opened and out steps Marks manager Paul Crockford, he is now standing right in front of me and giving me a very thoughtful stare.

I now think to myself Knopfler must definitely see me, so I look into the car and in the back seat is Mark, his eyes are closed and his face is puffed up like someone holding their breath and desperately needing oxygen, suddenly with his eyes still closed he swings round and Crockford opens the back door and the star of the show gets out with his back to me, with a last suspicious look at me Crockford slams the door shut and follows Mark in through the stage door. Dumbfounded I watch the pair disappear into the theatre, now that I can get passed the car the small crowd of onlookers start to disperse except a guy with his son who hesitantly go through the door followed by myself.

Knopfler is now on a landing where some one must have informed him about the young fan and his father below, and they are given the ok to proceed up the stairs, so taking my chance I call out, ” Macbeth is rocking to night,” those were the last words I said when I was leaving the house in Deptford when Mark asked me where I was going after the lyrics session. He was bending down to sign something for the youngster, when the words I’d called out seem to penetrate through his obviously dazed mind, and I’m saying that because he didn’t look to where the shout had come from, but turned to Crockford and said,” That’s the guy,” and Crockford answered, ” What guy,” making Knopfler still not looking in my direction answer in a  frustrated tone, ” The guy, the guy,” now Crockford seemed to think for a moment, and putting a friendly hand on Marks shoulder told his star in a convincing tone, ” There’s not a guy Mark,” and ushered him through a door away from the confused onlookers and the guy.

I’ve heard of hypnotism but mind control, and what about the mind over matter line, it didn’t seem to be working that day, Mark was out of it, and seemingly to make sure there would be no repeat of what happened for memories sake, the venue in the Playhouse Theatre that had been used for years for knopfler gigs was suddenly no more and transferred through to Glasgow. I can understand all those with their hands in Knopfler’s pockets ex wife’s and children, including John Illsley and all those managers who have got rich through Dire Straits, having memory loss about my part in the game. And we know the management make the artiste’s in the band sign something like a vow of silence, but in the name of the Wee Man was it really necessary to  have so many people to become subjected to a conspiracy to commit fraud.

When I worked with the Citizens Advice, I was dealing with redundancy claims, and a large building company wanted to fight against one of their workers claims, I told them was their reputation worth losing than the money the worker was entitled too remaining in their bank account, seems Paul Crockford and co wouldn’t have taken the same advice.

Dire Straits Wild West End


I’d toplbeen hitting it of with Mark Knopfler like the vibe you get when the drink takes you over and everyone suddenly gets the same buzz, except the driver whose sober and not enjoying being left out, and that was John Illsley who wasn’t on the same cloud and having threatened me once was now acting like a nasty sick Romeo who would have been jealous if it had been a doctor taking Mark’s pulse. When you have a six foot four male hovering over you and giving out the warning signs, that say ‘I’ve got my eye on you pal,’ for reasons only he and Mark seems to know about, I thought to myself if the guy feels left out and suspicious of me, then I’ll invite him to join in, it seemed to work in the many schools and playgrounds I’d studied and played in, so lets give it a shot, so with Mark sitting on the arm of the chair and myself on the floor using the seats cushion as a desk, I asked Illsley where he’d been before we met.

Looking down from his lofty perch his eyes narrowing wondering what I was up to, answered like a criminal being quizzed by the old Bill, ‘ I was getting Coffee Beans,” he stated and as a forethought said, ‘From Angellucci’s,” like someone who had afternoon tea in the Café Royal every Saturday and wanted to add, ‘Don’t you,’ and with that forced out of him gave me a sneer and went back to sitting with his book on the settee, ‘And a pick up for the guitar,’ Mark added but got no answer, so I wrote on the note paper.

Stepping out to Angellucci’s for my coffee beans, checking out the movies and the magazines.

Earlier that morning I’d seen Illsley sitting at a window seat in a coffee bar, and I’d gone in and the girl behind the counter was a darling, and when she asked me what I wanted, I replied, ” I want to marry you,’ that brought a great big smile from a very lovely and very bored counter assistant. Hence the next line.

Waitress she watches me crossing from the Barocco Bar, I’m getting a pick up for my steel guitar, I saw you walking out Shaftsbury Avenue, excuse me talking, ‘ I want to marry you,’ this is seventh heaven street to me, don’t be so proud, your just another angel in the crowd, and I’m walking in the wild west end, walking with your wild best friend.

The last two lines I hoped would help Illsley and I bond together, of course that didn’t happen, then or now, and like his interest in joining Mark and I with the lyrics, I drifted back to things that had happened in my own life. I’d met Carl Douglas who sang Kung Fu Fighting when I was working in a bar, I’d told him about my lyric writing and he seemed interested offering to have me join him on tour, but a woman came into my life and I took a job with London Transport as a conductor, then driver on the number eleven bus from Liverpool Street to Hammersmith Broadway, and that’s where I saw the Lions and the Starlings, and my conductress, it was Mark who suggested the number nineteen bus route as it probably ran through Deptford.

And my conductress on the number nineteen she was a honey, pink toe nails and hands all dirty with money, greasy hair easy smile, made me feel nineteen for a while.

And I did go down to China Town, a agency had given me a job card and I was lost and surrounded by cooked ducks, and I was starving, but the scene of those fried birds took away my appetite, and I climbed the stairs hoping to get my directions, knocking on the door and getting no answer, I opened the door to see four Chinese guys counting the money from a table covered with the stuff, they all lifted their heads and looked at me then resumed what they’d been doing, I closed the door almost knocking over a tray of dead ducks, and here is the story.

And I went down China town, in the backroom it’s a man’s world, all the money go down, duck inside a doorway got a duck to eat, right now feels alright now, you and me we can’t beat.

I’ll dedicate the next part of the lyric to Gary Holton who died of Heroin Poisoning, whose journey through the drugs scene ended in tragedy, from speed to downers, I met him in a club in London in the 70s. God rest his soul.

And a gogo dancing girl yes I saw her, the D.J. he says here’s Mandy for ye, I feel alright to see her, but she’s paid to do that stuff, she’s dancing high I move on by, the close ups can get rough, when your walking in the wild west end.

This lyric took about fifteen minutes to write, and I still got no response from Illsley, but I did impress Mark Knopfler.

Stepping out to Angellucci’s for my coffee beans, Checking out the movies and the magazines, Waitress she watches me crossing from the Barocco bar, I’m getting a pick up for my steel guitar, I saw you walking out Shaftsbury Avenue, Excuse me talking I wanna marry you, This is seventh heaven street to me, Don’t be so proud, your just another angel in the crowd, And I’m walking in the wild west end, Walking with your wild best friend.

And my conductress on the number nineteen, She was a honey, Pink toe nails hands dirty with money, Greasy hair easy smile, Made me feel nineteen for a while. And I went down to Chinatown, In the backroom it’s a man’s world, All the money go down, Duck inside the doorway, gotta duck to eat, Right now feels alright now, You and me we can’t beat.

And a gogo dancing girl yes I saw her, The D.J. he say here’s Mandy for ye, I feel alright to see her, But she’s paid to do that stuff, She’s dancing high I move on by, The close ups can get rough, When your walking in the wild west end…..Robert Marshal

Mark Knopfler I say No No No

noWhen  I  came  back  on  the  scene  in  2006,  John  Illsley  contacted  Mark  Knopfler  and  proposed  reforming  Dire  Straits,  the  answer  was  no  no  no. Was  this  because he  was  having  such  a  good  time  posturing  with  other  celebrities,  who  hadn’t  yet  been  informed  he  wasn’t  being  truthful  about  who  had  written  the  lyrics  to  Dire  Straits  hits  like   Sultans  of  Swing,  and  he  was  filling  his  belly  with  the  fruits  of  deceit  and  enjoying  every  moment  before  the  table  was  chopped  up  for  firewood,  bringing  to  a  end  the  phone  calls  for  him  to  collaborate  on  others  stars  albums, no  no  no . Then  perhaps  Illsley  had  been  to  hasty   and  expected  with  my  return  our  collaboration together  could  bring  the  old  Dire  Straits  back  together,  but  how  could  that  reunion  ever  happen,  Illsley’s  enthusiasm  didn’t  seem  to  get  approval  from  Knopfler  who  was  touring  with Emmy Lou  Harris,  and  hadn’t  he   been  told  by  his  friend  Mark,  that  he  had  already  sold  the  rights  of  the  songs  and  the  lyrics  written  by  Robert  Marshal to  the  major  record  companies  Polydor for  example  and  had  spent  the  money,  and  as  that  was  never  part  of  our  agreement  made  in  Deptford,  and  just  outright  theft  and  fraudulent  dealings  with  those  record  companies  he’d  obviously  duped  into  buying  someone  else’s  Intellectual Property  he  had  to  say  no  no  no.  You’d  think  surely  after  all  the  records  D.S.  sold  would  money  be  a  problem  to  Mark,  or  maybe  the  truth  is  you  just  can’t  get  enough  of   the  stuff,  and  your  reputation  means  nothing  as  long  as  you’ve  got  a  healthy  bank  balance.  No  no  no  when  I  met  him  his  opening  gambit  was, ” Are  you  the  guy  whose  going  to  make  me  a  millionaire,” didn’t  seem  like  a  greedy  geezer  to  me, or  maybe  yes yes yes.?

It  was  then  Illsley  decided  to  put  away  his  learn  to  paint  book,  close  his  studio  and  hide  his  paint  pots,  and  make  believe  he  could  handle  the  lead  guitar  role  and  give  his  bass  position  to  someone  else,  and  with  him  singing  he  had  some  of  the  ingredients  that  were  once  Dire Straits, but  without  Mark  there  was  no-one  able  to  take  on  the  lead  guitar,  and  certainly  not  Illsley  whose  come  back  into  the music  business,  has  been  a  financial  disaster  according  to  him.  I’ve  got  to  pay  for  our  equipment  being  stored  and  the  roadies  wages  and  there’s  the  venue  costs,  and  a  hundred  or  so  paying  punters  isn’t  going  to  cover  the  expenses,  he  moaned. However  Mister  big  spender Illsley  has  again  overlooked  the  reality  of  the  situation, its  mostly  the  money  he’s  pocketed  that  should  have  gone  to  Robert  Marshal  he’s  spending,  and  he’s  got  the  balls  to  complain, money  for  nothing  mate  remember.