Dire Straits guitarist Jack Sonni has died at the age of 68.

The musician’s passing was announced in a moving post by the band posted online.

Sonni was known as ‘the other guitarist’ during the group’s Brothers in Arms era, named after their fifth album, released in 1985.

His cause of death has not been revealed.

Sonni had been working at the famous New York City guitar shop Rudy’s Music Stop in the 1970s when he first met The Dire Straits’ co-founders David and Mark Knopfler. 

RIP: The Dire Straits' guitarist Jack Sonnie has died at the age of 68. The musician performed with the band following the release of their 1985 album Brothers In Arms

RIP: The Dire Straits’ guitarist Jack Sonnie has died at the age of 68. The musician performed with the band following the release of their 1985 album Brothers In Arms

He played alongside the band at the iconic 1985 Live Aid concert at Wembley Stadium that raised money for the famine that hit Ethiopia. 

Dire Straits disbanded in 1985, though Knopfler has continued his music career as a solo artist.

Following the news of Jack’s death, many fans took to social media to pay tribute, including many messages on his Facebook page.

One posted: ‘OMG… so sorry to hear this terrible news. RIP hero!’ while another added: ‘Sending love and condolences to Nadine and family. RIP Jack.’

A third shared: ‘Sincerest condolences to Jack’s family and loved ones,’ while one user shared: ‘Thank you for your wonderful vibe. Rest In Peace.’

Born in Indiana, Pennsylvania, after his collaboration with Dire Straits, Jack went onto contribute to a series of other musicians’ works but ended his professional musical career when his twin daughters were born in 1988.

He began a second career as a marketing executive, first at Seymour Duncan, then Rivera Guitar Amplifiers followed by several years as director of marketing communications at Line 6, a manufacturer of digital technology products for musicians.

In 2001, he became vice president of marketing communication for Guitar Center.

Tragic: The musician's passing was announced in a moving post by the band posted online (Jack is pictured right with Mark Knopfler performing in 1985)

Tragic: The musician’s passing was announced in a moving post by the band posted online (Jack is pictured right with Mark Knopfler performing in 1985)

Legendary: Dire Straits disbanded in 1985, though Knopfler has continued his music career as a solo artist (pictured in 1985)

Legendary: Dire Straits disbanded in 1985, though Knopfler has continued his music career as a solo artist (pictured in 1985)

In the summer of 2006, Sonni left Guitar Center to write books, moving to San Jose del Cabo, then California. 

He was writer-in-residence and House Manager at the Noepe Center for Literary Arts on Martha’s Vineyard until its closure in 2017.

He had also returned to playing music on a regular basis with his band, The Leisure Class.

His last Facebook post was shared on June 2, telling his followers he was taking a break to focus on writing.

He said: ‘Well chilluns, the last social media post for the foreseeable future as I dive into getting my novel in shape for my agent’s publisher hunt. 

‘Play nice & be kind to one another! And hug them while you can.’

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