When Dire Straits released “Brothers In Arms” it was historic because it was one of the first albums recorded digitally. They released it on vinyl and cassette tape but the compact disc idea at the time was a big deal.
Jonathan Henley who was the correspondent said that when he heard several songs of the album he bought the album. He explained that when he was young his 12-years-older brother picked him up from a basketball game and popped the cassette in. He remembers how clean Mark Knopfler’s guitar sounded.
“The album was clearly different. The songs told stories about struggle to overcome and survive, struggle of freedom fighters and relationships between lovers”.
In the spring of 1985 “Money for Nothing” became a huge hit on MTV and radio. It was awesome songs with riffs and story of blue collar workers. The video was all neon and black.
For Jonathan the song with all the power was “Walk of Life”. For him that song is one of the best “feel good” songs ever. It tells the story of a musician whose music just tells the stories of life, for most any walk of life. Video pulls together clips of Dire Straits on stage, clips from different sports, showing the athletes running onto fields and courts ready to play. Rhythm which holds all song in “position” is from Knopfler’s Fender Telecaster.
The summer of ’85 was terrible and confusing for him. That summer their mom died, and Jonathan and his brother were constantly trying to understand how hard is to living without her.
“Our dad was far from gracious, he was a mess, angry and broken. There was a lot of things for all of us. Funny thing was how we were all together to watch the NBA Finals that summer. Me and my brother kept to listening music together, and how that driving rhythm of Knopfler’s Telecaster seemed to remind me that even on rainy days the sun was destined to come out”, added Jonathan.
Next year – 1986 Jonathan listened to the whole album again, and the last song of the album just hit him. That was “Brothers In Arms” – song about fighters on both sides of the Falklands War in 1982. After his mother died and that personal loss Jonathan had a totally different experience of life. He needed brothers in arms, and he recognized that maybe we all are that.
“All of these years later, and who knows why this stuff floats to the surface sometimes. I hope I still think about the person who has to “install microwave ovens, custom kitchen delivery,” the one who does the “walk of life,” and that I can identify my brothers in arms whether they are Muslims or Christians or atheists, even when loud voices try to tell me that they are my enemies. The truth is that “we are fools to make war on our brothers in arms,” especially when they’ve experienced the loss of people they love just like me”, finished Jonathan.