Mark Knopfler’s take on getting older….
Many of the songs on Mark Knopfler’s new album, Tracker, deal with older characters reflecting upon their past. In a new interview, the 65-year old Knopfler says that he’s fine with the idea of aging, because there’s no point in trying to fight it.
“You’ve got no choice,” I just try to stay fit. That’s important — just to try to stay physically fit so you can go out there and play. You do need to be in reasonable shape. When you’re a kid, you’re not even thinking about that stuff. You’re just ramming through everything. I did learn eventually — perhaps far too late — to respect the talent I have. For a lot of years out there, I was just bashing on to the next thing and not really thinking about it too much. That’s what we do. But I’m learning to appreciate the moment.”
Knopfler draws a contrast between the melodrama in his Dire Straits classic “Romeo and Juliet” and his newer material, where the characters deal with the trials and tribulations of life by using the wisdom they’ve acquired along the way. It’s resulted in songs, he said, that he couldn’t have written when he was younger.
“I’m very conscious of time,” he continued. “Instead of receding, the past actually becomes more important. That’s what will happen to you. It sounds unlikely, but the past actually changes complexion as you get older. You see things differently […] You feel [indestructible] till you’re whatever age, then you start picking up a few injuries along the way. You need to have the obsession to go on. As one of my musical friends remarked not so long ago, this getting older stuff ain’t for wimps. So you need to have a certain resilience. It’s the love of the thing that keeps you turning up.”