John Illsley was a founder member of one of the biggest bands of all time, Dire Straits. Now he is bringing his one-man show to Sussex.

WHEN you have been a member of one of the most successful rock bands in history you obviously have plenty of stories to tell... and that certainly applies to John Illsley.

Illsley was the bass player in one of the most successful bands of the Eighties and Nineties, namely Dire Straits.

Best known for their mega-selling record Brothers in Arms, Dire Straits had first made their mark in the late Seventies with their eponymous debut album which included one of their most popular songs, Sultans of Swing.

Now he will be recounting tales from his stellar career playing alongside one of the world’s greatest guitarists, Mark Knopfler, in his new show.

Illsley’s “Life and Times of Dire Straits” is not just “an evening with” with a bit of chat and the odd anecdote, it’s much, much more.

There is chat and stories, plenty of it – and who doesn’t want to know about life in one of the most famous bands the world’s ever known.

The renowned bass guitarist will be interviewed by one of Dire Straits’ former managers, Paul Cummins, who has his own take on the good old days himself.

Indeed he often throws the odd curveball.

“It’s extraordinary what Paul remembers” said Illsley of his interviewer.

“Talk about keeping me on my toes, and every show seems to throw up something different.”

Then there’s the music. Unlike many of the aforementioned “talking” evenings Illsley also provides music to accompany the verbal interludes.

Along with three members of his own band he swings acoustically through some of Dire Straits’ biggest hits and some of his own music as well.

He first took his “Life and Times of Dire Straits” on the road last year.

It played across nationwide venues, even taking in Glastonbury Festival, and proved a rip-roaring success. So much so that he has decided to replicate the experience, which includes a show in Bognor.

Of course he is a musician well placed to talk about life on the road and what it means to be in a band.

A founder member and long-time bass player of Dire S

They sold well over 100 million albums, spent 1,100 weeks on the UK album charts alone and received countless awards including four Grammys and three Brits as well as an induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

So John knows exactly what it takes to be starting out, what it’s like when you’ve arrived and what a rollercoaster it all can be.

To complement the touring activity he recently released a highly-acclaimed new album Coming up for Air featuring his trademark style and distinctive vocals.

The Life and Times of Dire Straits sees John sharing some of his history and some of his music all on the one evening.

A fascinating eye-opener with some wonderful songs, this is a show that provides an utterly entertaining and unique night out.

Tickets are on sale now from venues/all usual tickets outlets starting at £20 (plus booking fee).

John is appearing at the Regis Centre in Bognor on March 25.