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“Those Dire Straits guys kick ass, and that Mark Knopfler guy can sing almost as good as me!”
“I want my Dire Straits!”
“How could you fire your own f*&#ing family?!”
“There is absolutely no truth to what is said about me and Dire Straits forming a new band”
“Money for nothing, and your chicks for free.”
Dire Straits was a British grunge-pop/polka/rapping hip hop-blue grass group, founded by Mark Knopfler (guitar, vocals, and sex headband), his uncle twice-removed, David Knopfler (ukelele and harpsichord), John Illsley (tuba), Pick Withers (bongos), Dr Parkinson (triangle) and Sting (a sad ploy to increase sales). Although they began making music at the height of punk and *gasp!* disco they ended up being more awesome than either the Bee Gees or the Ramones. Their influences include Bob Dylan, Led Zeppelin, Hank Williams, Michael McDonald and Jesus. In short they are one of the greatest but most underrated bands of their time. The band's best known songs are "Hitler & Mussolini", "Public Enquiries", "Money For Nothing (Aid for Africa)" "Mothers in Arms" and their greatest hip hop hit "Sultans of Bling".
edit Early Days
Dire Straits recorded their first album, "Heck, we can't be stuffed coming up with an original name for this album, let's just name it after us", also known as "Titles Are Superfluous" in 1978. It originally sold poorly, mostly because nobody wanted talented musicians playing on their records, understandably preferring grunge pop and disco. However, the band and a bunch of record people then took the album to Warner Brothers, and the record sold 100,000,000,000.01 copies, despite only 100,000 ever being produced. Scientologists believe the records were able to clone themselves and then sell themselves in the black market, making Titles Are Superfluous the first ever sentient, self-cloning album. The most famous (i.e. - least shit) song on the album was the single, "Sultans of Bling", a song complaining about how Mr T gets his money for nothing. Nobody actually cared about the lyrics because they didn't rhyme, but the single is known now for being the precursor to the tapping technique popularized by Eddie Van Halen, Randy Rhoads, and Tinky Winky. ("Sultans of Bling" was written in 1945, long before Eddie or rock n' roll had ever existed. However, due to the inconvenience of Mark Knopfler not being born at the time, he was unable to record it until 1978.)
The band followed up this tremendous success with their second album "Communiste", which sucked, if only for the reason that it didn't include the single "Sultans of Bling" again. The songs on the album include "What do think you're doing? Put the drugs down!", "Shady Writer" (a cheap rip-off version of Sultans which no-one liked), and "Portobello Smell" (a song about sniffing mushrooms.)
edit Middle Days
Dire Straits had been known for their stripped-down sound at this time, but with the coming of the 1980's were forced to overproduce their next album, Faking Movies. Although this improved the instrumentation to no end, David Knopfler became convinced that his brother Mark was blaspheming against all that Dire Straits stood for, and attempted to burn Mark Knopfler at the stake. Mark survived, on account of him being immortal, and so David resorted to plan B and stormed out of the recording studios (planting a time bomb in the recording studios on the way out). With David finally gone, and at least half the recording studio almost still intact, Dire Straits then abducted several extra band members from various places and began recording. Making Moveis was an album of intense emotion, featuring singles such as "Funnel of Gloves", "Scrapeaway", and the immensely successful "Hitler and Mussolini", the tragic story of two young and (not so) innocent lovers. Shakespear then shamelessely copied the storyline of this song for one of his plays. After Faking Movies, Dire Straits then released "For the Love of Gold", which was experimental, dark, ambitious, and largely responsible for a huge rise in depression that year. Although the album included only 5 tracks, every track is at least 4 hours long, and the total album running time is estimated to be somewhere between 50 and 60 million years (90% of this is the introduction to Smelly-Giraffe Road). The album was so long that the band had to borrow a time machine to go back in time and record it. The tracks are: "Smelly-Giraffe Road" (The band's longest song, making up 99% of the album's running time), "Public Enquiries (a song where Mark Knopfler complains about how Private Detectives get their money for nothing), "How Jesus Died from Industrial Disease" (notable for being the only song on which founding band member Dr Parkinson appears on), "For the Love of Gold", and "It rains bitch, get used to it.".
edit Holy crap, we're rich!
After about 50 lineup changes and live albums released to buy the band some more time, the Straits released their most successful album, topping the success of their first two...successes. Mothers In Arms featured the single named after the album as well as "Money From Nothing", a song where Mark Knopfler brands all blue collar workers "Faggots", complaining about how they get their money for nothing whilst rockstars have to work very hard to earn their money. The song became immensely popular (Mainly because of the "cutting edge" animations in the video clip) and spent several decades on top of every chart ever known to man. This song also included the famous line "I want my royalty fee!" sung by Sting, who sued the band for royalties shortly after, surprise surprise. Other songs included the insufferably happy "Walk of Strife", "Not Far Away Enough", "Your Latest Brick", "Start Worrying Now, Bitch", "Drive into the River" and the title track (Complaining about how soldiers get their money for nothing).
The album was also one of the first to be on Sony and Phillip's new marketing scam, the CD. It sold a gajillion copies, and to this date there are no records of how many copies it sold because every time someone considers counting them, they decide not to for some reason...
The "Money From Nothing" video included some footage from the "Baby, Baby" video by Hungarian pop band First Floor. The band wanted to sue Dire Straits over copyrights, but they settled.
edit Decline and Fall of the Dire Empire
After Mothers in Arms, the Straits sucked. By the 1990's, people were more inclined to listen to the likes of Nirvana than the Straits, and Mark Knopfler's dubious solo career did not help to increase sales. Their final album, On Every Other Street, was greeted with mixed reviews. Literally. Every review was put into a blender and Rolling Stone drank whatever came out. The band broke up in 1995, and Mark Knopfler went on to pursue other bands, hunting them down until he caught up with them. Although every other frickin' band has reunited now, there are no plans of a Dire Straits reunion, and probably never will be unless Mark Knopfler regrows his hair and gets a new sweat band.
edit The Damn Straits
After taking a second mortgage to buy his soul back from Satan himself,first one being paid by the money gotten from his last Dire Straits album, Knopfler at the age of 81 forms a heavy metal/psychadelic disco-pop-grunge band called the Damn Straits. Continually getting Déjà vu he, with the UnHoly Spirit of Eric Clapton on the rhythm guitar and with the help of Dante on the lyrics and drums, creates evergreen classic hit songs like "Satans of Swing" and "Warlocks in Farms". The Satanic bible does not omen more as it ends with Knopfler doing his famous live power chord jam in the middle of "Satans of Swing" or SoS. He records a song with Sting called, "Old man metal," which didn't come great off the album because Sting was playing in the key of Q# to give it a Satanic Sound, and sends a message in an atomic bomb to the heavens.
edit Did You Know?
- Mark Knopfler is one of the few rock guitarists to play without a pick, fingers, or a guitar for that matter.
- A disco version of "Sultans of Bling" was released around the same time as the original version. It did poorly and should never be spoken of again.
- Dire Straights is the name of a dating site run by the anti-gay community and people that just can't get any.
- If you say you like Dire Straits, no one will ever insult your music taste. Ever.
- All members of the band have not been in the band at some point. Usually, this occurred during lunch breaks.
- Mark Knopfler was a choir boy at age 7. He then left the choir after a day because he realized that he hadn't "accidentally" joined the Castrati.
- The Dire Straits song "Smelly-Giraffe Road" is the longest song ever recorded, with the introduction on its own spanning at least 40 million years and 15 seconds.
- The line "When we made love, you used to cry" can be clearly heard in "Hitler & Mussolini", but we have not got an answer. Why did Knopfler's lover cry during their sex acts? But do we really want to know?
- In 2010, Dire Straits were singled out by the entire music community as the only band ever to be both very brilliant and very boring in equal measures.
- Mark Knopfler has a species of dinosaur named after him.