Ticket to Heaven

Mumbai is not on the usual rock circuit, and is quite starved for good concerts.  Most international acts give the city a pass, thanks to unfriendly government regulations and taxes. So it was with much surprise and enthusiasm that, yesterday, we witnessed one of the all-time greats of rock – Mark Knopfler – in concert at the MMRDA grounds! 

A long time ago came a man on a track
walking thirty miles with a pack on his back
and he put down his load where he thought it was the best
made a home in the wilderness

Dire Straits – the band Knopfler founded way back in 1978 – has always been the ultimate source of joy for me.  And it has been a lifelong dream to attend a live concert of Mark Knopfler.  Can you imagine Knopfler on a stage, some rows ahead, playing for you ?!

Here I am again in this mean old town
And you’re so far away from me
And where are you when the sun goes down
You’re so far away from me

So when I learned that he was to perform in Mumbai on 5th March 2005, I couldn’t believe it.  More so because I was scheduled to be on a plane out of India the same day – the one day that I didn’t want to be anywhere else but here!  As luck would have it, just three days before the show, my trip got postponed.  And, it seemed like I was finally going to make it to the show…

how long, how long baby
how long has it been
how long you gonna keep me wondering
how long before you see
stallin’ me was wrong – how long

It was every thing I’d dreamed of, and more.  The arrangements were well coordinated, the audience was well behaved, the sound quality was superb and the music… the music was sheer bliss.

I got my ticket to heaven
and everlasting life
I got a ride all the way to paradise

The Sultan of Swing performed live last night, and I was just a couple of rows away from him!!!

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  1. I had never heard of him until i saw a few announcements in the media about his concert. What is swing ? he is performing in Bangalore on Monday, March 07. I suppose his avid fans would be there notwithstanding the working week ahead.

  2. Yesss ! I was behind Vijai in the seventh row (or ninth !) and Yes – He was awesome. I waited 20 years for this. Pity most of us did not know most of his non-dire straits songs. There was this young girl who knew ALL the songs – which was really amazing. There was this family from Delhi which had flown down esp for this. The Family comprised a 60 year old Granny, her son & Daughter-In-Law and an 8 year old son (who squeezed his way ahead to the first row and was the most enthusiastic kid present ) Shows the kind of universal appeal his music has. Another special was the improvisation in Sultans of Swing second only IMHO to the one he did with Clapton.I hope he comes back soon. He sure gave me something to cherish for a lifetime.

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