Mark-Knopfler-Guitar-Stories

Easily one of the most memorable and recognizable riffs in the history of rock and roll, Mark Knopfler’s chunky guitar work on Dire Straits’ ‘Money For Nothing’ is nothing short of legendary. In a recent video uploaded by the Forgotten Guitar website to their Facebook page, Knopfler, with his 1958 Gibson Les Paul in hand, explains how he came up with the song’s signature riff.

In the video, part of a documentary titled Guitar Stories: Mark Knopfler and hosted by his former Dire Straits bandmate John Illsley, Knopfler talks about how the riff started out as a simple little lick based around his fingerpicking playing style. Eventually, combining a a Marshall amp turned up to the max and a wah-wah pedal – “just to give it something different” – the magic was born.

Talking about the ’58 Gibson Les Paul, Knopfler says, “I never stop appreciating the thing, every time I pick it up, especially if you’ve been playing other instruments and get back to a guitar like this…sometimes I’ll just give it a kiss.”