Mark Knopfler was thrilled to duet with his guitar idol Hank Marvin.

Mark Knopfler

Mark Knopfler

The Dire Straits star grew up dreaming of being the lead guitarist in Sir Cliff Richards' backing band The Shadows - who has inspired the likes of Queen's Brian May, Eric Clapton, Neil Young and Jimmy Page with his unique guitar-playing - and insisted on having his own red Fender Stratocaster just like Marvin's as a kid.

And now he has finally realised his childhood aspiration, by featuring on a re-reccording of 'Wonderful Land' by The Shadows, a number one in 1962, and 1961's 'Nivram' for Marvin's 3CD greatest hits LP 'Gold'.

Knopfler said: "When I was a kid all I wanted was a red electric guitar.

"It had to be red because of Hank and his magical sound."

Cliff and The Shadows achieved a total of 43 Top 20 hit singles in a decade, and instrumentalists The Shadows achieved five number ones of their own, most famously 'Apache', which showcased the distinctive sound Marvin achieved using the tremolo arm of his Stratocaster.

As well as duets with Cliff, Brian May and Duane Eddy on 'Gold', Marvin has re-released his impressive solo back catalogue.

Knopfler and Marvin both have in common success as solo artists and in their respective groups.

In November, the former released his ninth solo studio album, 'Down The Road Wherever'.

The 'Romeo and Juliet' hitmaker previously admitted it was the group's difficult formative years which helped him to have such a successful career, as it made him realise what he wanted to achieve.

He explained: "I used to hitchhike then, climbing up into lorry cabs with bags and guitars. There was snow everywhere, and I got put off in the middle of the country somewhere - in the Midlands, I think - on a slip road off the motorway. I'm standing up there, and there;s nobody. I can see 360 degrees for miles all around, and there's nothing moving, just the sun shining down on all this snow. And I remember getting a very clear idea of what I'd decided I was going to do with my life."


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