Jump to content

More Mark Knopfler - Dire Straits' "romeo & Juliet" On

Recommended Posts

It struck me when listening back to this that I haven't really sorted out how to sing Dire Straits songs without the vocal sounding very derivative. It's his rhythms and phrasing, particularly in the unpitched lines - they're so distinctive that they almost suck you into using an embarrassing fake Geordie accent.


Anyway - Romeo and Juliet from Making Movies is one of his songs which is just perfect. For many people of my generation in the 80s liking Dire Straits wasn't really "allowed". I always had a soft spot for Making Movies and Love Over Gold though.


I make no great claims for this, but it's a bit of fun:



I intend to do Telegraph Road at some point ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Stuart, great track! Any reason you chose your Jeffries over your Maccann for this one?


Do you have any general pointers on how you work out arrangements like this, in terms of how to distribute the notes of the backing chords? I do a number of instrumental pop covers on concertina, but since I'm from a more melodic background it's a slow haul to make my left-hand chording more interesting than just "mash D-A, mash G-D, mash A-E".




I enjoy these covers of modern popular tunes, and not just as novelty. Having to re-arrange a tune for a different instrument lends itself to a close examination of what really "makes" the tune. Also, in line with the "rut?" thread in General, an increased use of concertina in popular music, professional or hobby, gets us more back in line with where concertina was in the late 1800s, and not just a niche "ethnic" curiosity.


Still one of my favorite "folk" songs for concertina is "Her Bright Smile Haunts Me Still", which though thought of as "Old Time" music now, was a pop hit from the mid-1860s in Virginia, with a clear original composer and lyricist.

Edited by MatthewVanitas
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks Matthew. The Jeffries duet just felt right for this song - I had previously been trying it on C/G anglo for fun (still in the original key of F) but there are passages which simply don't work very well on anglo as you end up either with the bellows on the pull for too long, or with some rather unsatisfactory chord voicings.


As for working out the arrangement, I confess I didn't - and often don't - really. I work very much by ear with this sort of thing, I'm afraid - although it could certainly do with a bit of refinement.

Edited by StuartEstell
Link to comment
Share on other sites

G'day Stuart, very nice and really interestin. I enjoyed it, not too many ruts to get stuck in around here.


Having now listened to quite a few songs accompanied by duet, I'm beginning to feel the accompaniment is usually a bit heavy. I prefer the usually lighter touch of the EC, as in Wolf's recording of Piper to the End. But that's just my personal preference and in no way a critism of your style, please carry on. Of course I'm an english player.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...