Nick Drake

English singer-songwriter (1948–1974) / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Nicholas Rodney Drake (19 June 1948 – 25 November 1974) was an English singer-songwriter known for his acoustic guitar-based songs. He signed to Island Records when he was a 20-year-old student at the University of Cambridge. He released his debut album, Five Leaves Left, in 1969. Drake recorded two more albums, Bryter Layter (1971) and Pink Moon (1972), which both sold poorly. Drake's reluctance to be interviewed or to perform live contributed to his lack of success. He did not find a wide audience during his lifetime, but his music gradually achieved wider notice and recognition following his death.

Quick facts: Nick Drake, Background information, Birth nam...
Nick Drake
Drake in 1969
Drake in 1969
Background information
Birth nameNicholas Rodney Drake
Born(1948-06-19)19 June 1948
Rangoon, Burma
Died25 November 1974(1974-11-25) (aged 26)
Tanworth-in-Arden, England
Instrument(s)Vocals, guitar, piano, clarinet, saxophone
Years active1967–1974

Drake experienced depression and mental health difficulties. Upon the completion of Pink Moon, he withdrew from both live performance and recording and retreated to his parents' home in rural Warwickshire. On 25 November 1974, Drake died at the age of 26; according to the coroner, the cause of death was an overdose of antidepressants.

His music remained available through the mid-1970s, but the 1979 release of the retrospective album Fruit Tree allowed his back catalogue to be reassessed. By the mid-1980s, Drake was being credited as an influence by such artists as Robert Smith of the Cure and Peter Buck of R.E.M. In 1985, The Dream Academy reached the UK and US charts with "Life in a Northern Town", a song written for and dedicated to Drake. By the early 1990s, he had come to represent the "doomed romantic" musician in the UK music press and was cited as an influence by artists including Kate Bush, Paul Weller, Aimee Mann, Beck, Robyn Hitchcock and the Black Crowes. The first Drake biography appeared in 1997; it was followed in 1998 by the documentary film A Stranger Among Us.

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