In the holiday movie Fred Claus, Vince Vaughn plays Fred, the bitter older brother of Santa Claus. In one scene, he goes to a group counseling session with the brothers of Sylvester Stallone, Bill Clinton, Alec Baldwin and others to vent his frustration. Today is the 60th birthday of David Knopfler. You might recognize the surname, the same as older brother Mark, who became famous as the guitarist and singer for Dire Straits.
After playing on the first three Dire Straits records with his brother, David left the band and pursued a solo career as a musician, author, producer and poet. He had moderate success with his recording career, releasing a string of records over the last 20 years, but nothing compared to the success of brother Mark.
On his birthday, we soothe David with a list of seven other lesser known rock music siblings.
7. Rich Robinson
"Young" Rich Robinson, as his older brother, Chris, calls him, was as much the backbone of southern roots, jam band the Black Crowes as his older sibling, but being the guitarist put him behind the more charismatic character of his brother both in the band and in their solo careers. Their fights also happen to be the stuff of rock and roll legend.
6. Richard Carpenter
Unfortunately, Karen's brother is mostly thought of as a tagalong to his silky-voiced sister. Many found he pair's relationship to be creepy and her death of anorexia along with his drug addiction at the same time didn't help matters. Still, he was part of one of the most successful recording duos of the '70s, even if most people only remember his sister.
5. Malcolm Young
The irony of Malcolm Young, brother to wild and wooly guitarist Angus from AC/DC is that, is that, by all accounts, AC/DC is Malcom's band. Most everyone knows the crazed guitar-slinging antics and schoolboy wardrobe of Angus, but the guy that runs the show when it comes to the band is the rhythm guitar-playing sibling. Go figure.
4. Tom Fogerty
Having an overbearing sibling is tough enough, but being in a band with him must be hell. Tom Fogerty was one of the founding members of Creedence Clearwater Revival with brother John. But, despite fully participating in the band as a guitarist and back up singer, few of his songs saw the light of day. Still feuding with his brother, he left the band in 1971. His modest solo career was over by the mid-70s when he retired to Arizona to collect CCR royalties. He passed away in 1990.
3. Andy Yorke
Who even know Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke had a brother, let alone that he plays music, but both are true. Obviously, it didn't have nearly the success of Radiohead -- or even any success for that matter -- but he did release several records with band Unbelievable Truth in the 1990s.
2. Chris Jagger
It must really suck to be the brother of someone as famous as Mick Jagger and want to ply the same trade. Chris likely never had a chance. While his music career tanked despite the fact he released numerous records over the years, he's had a pretty successful turn at journalism writing for The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, The Mail on Sunday, The Independent on Sunday, and Rolling Stone. At the very least, he can say he moves like Jagger and be right.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
1. Simon and Paul Townshend
Who guitarist Pete Townshend has not only one but two not-so-famous brothers, Simon and Paul. Simon, the substantially younger brother to Pete, has been the back up guitarist in the Who since the late '90s. Paul is more of a mystery. Apparently his one claim to fame besides his brother is that he voiced a Simpsons character. Which one, you ask? Well, the voice of his brother Pete when he was unavailable to record it. Ouch.