Biography

Nicholas Rodney "Nick" Drake (19 June 1948 - 25 November 1974) was an English singer-songwriter and musician, known for his acoustic guitar-based songs. He failed to find a wide audience during his lifetime but his work has gradually achieved wider notice and recognition. Drake signed to Island Records when he was 20 years old and a student at the University of Cambridge, and released his debut album, Five Leaves Left, in 1969. By 1972, he had recorded two more albums--Bryter Layter and Pink Moon. Neither sold more than 5,000 copies on initial release. Drake's reluctance to perform live, or be interviewed, contributed to his lack of commercial success. There is no known footage of the adult Drake; he was only ever captured in still photographs and in home footage from his childhood.

Drake suffered from depression, particularly during the latter part of his young life. This was often reflected in his lyrics. On completion of his third album, 1972's Pink Moon, he withdrew from both live performance and recording, retreating to his parents' home in rural Warwickshire. On 25 November 1974, Drake died from an overdose of amitriptyline, a prescribed antidepressant; he was 26 years old. Whether his death was an accident or suicide has never been resolved.

Drake's 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, David Sylvian and Peter Buck. 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 a certain type of "doomed romantic" musician in the UK music press and was frequently cited as an influence by artists including Kate Bush, Paul Weller, Beck and The Black Crowes. His first biography appeared in 1997, and was followed in 1998 by the documentary film A Stranger Among Us.

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Nick Drake News

Six previously unheard Nick Drake recordings up for auction

Six previously unheard Nick Drake recordings up for auction

They are expected to make at least £250,000

  • Jul 3, 2014

Unheard Nick Drake song 'Reckless Jane' appears online - listen

The cult songwriter's collaboration with folk singer Beverley Martyn was written just months before his death in 1974

  • Apr 3, 2014

Nick Drake classic 'Bryter Layter' to be re-released in limited edition box set

Producer Joe Boyd also to present a tribute gig and live CD

  • Mar 15, 2013

Vashti Bunyan and more to play tribute concert for Nick Drake string arranger Robert Kirby

Artists set for London show this Sunday (October 3)

  • Sep 27, 2010

Nick Drake documentary, tribute album and book on the way

The Emmett Malloy project already has artists such as Jack Johnson and Andrew Bird on board

  • Jul 9, 2010

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Nick Drake Music Videos

River Man Play Video

River Man

Watch the official River Man video by Nick Drake in HD on WWW.MUZU.TV and check out the latest new music releases and playlists for free.

Way To Blue Play Video

Way To Blue

Watch the official Way To Blue video by Nick Drake in HD on WWW.MUZU.TV and check out the latest new music releases and playlists for free.

Pimptroduction (Nick Pride Remix) Play Video

Pimptroduction (Nick Pride Remix)

Watch the official Pimptroduction (Nick Pride Remix) video by Nick Pride & The Pimptones in HD on WWW.MUZU.TV and check out the latest new music releases and playlists for free.

Simple Things Play Video

Simple Things

Watch the official Simple Things video by Drake Murphy in HD on WWW.MUZU.TV and check out the latest new music releases and playlists for free.

La Playa Del Sol Play Video

La Playa Del Sol

Watch the official La Playa Del Sol video by Drake Murphy in HD on WWW.MUZU.TV and check out the latest new music releases and playlists for free.

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