Chris White was a key member of the iconic Dire Straits rock band. Chris has a career spanning almost 40 years in the music industry, where he is known for the saxophone sound that graced some of the biggest hits of the last thirty years. Still a working player and songwriter, he has shared stages with some of the icons of 20th Century such as Ray Charles, Robbie Williams and Mark Knopfler.
Chris’s love affair with the saxophone began aged 14, when he was given the instrument by his music teacher. He instantly had an affinity with the sound and was soon working as a stand-in for the very same teacher, covering his gigs at local venues. His desire to earn his way as a musician led Chris to move to London in his late teens, where he soon found work playing live and sessioning for some of the up and coming bands of the time. His first big break came in 1981 when he was asked to play on Nick Heyward’s album ‘North Of A Miracle’ which went on to sell over 100,000 copies. Following this success, his reputation continued to build, playing and recording with Aztec Camera, Chris DeBurgh and Paul McCartney.
The call from Mark Knopfler came in 1983, when Dire Straits were a young, successful band, on the threshold of a massive international career. Within 2 years, the bands success had skyrocketed and on his 30th birthday Chris played the Live Aid concert. Playing the Mandela concert in 1987 was a personal career highlight for Chris. Two world tours and several albums kept Chris working with Dire Straits for many years until the band parted ways in the early 90’s. Post Dire Straits saw further world tours for Chris, with Robbie Williams and Joe Cocker and recording and live work with many more artists, including Ray Charles and Mick Jagger.
Chris’s latest musical endeavour came about following a specific request for a gig at The Royal Albert Hall to play the hits of Dire Straits ‘for one night only’ with a handful of members from the original band. Following the resounding success of the night, the band put together a schedule of dates in the UK and Europe, which was met with phenomenal reception and turned into a full time project. Having toured the USA and Russia in the early part of 2014, Chris now has concerts coming up in Australia, New Zealand and Europe, working as part of ‘The Dire Straits Experience’ bringing those iconic sounds to audiences once again.
Chris White talks with candour and humour of his experiences of a life on the road, both in and out of the spotlight, and the teamwork behind the band. He can also perform some of the saxophone solos he is best known for. He is perfect for an event which wants something slightly different, where he will share his exciting rock stories with the audience igniting everyone’s flame with the wonderful tunes of his saxophone.
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