Nick Drake: The Sweetest Voice, the Saddest Story.
In my opinion, no one, except for maybe Syd Barrett or John Lennon, has such a sad biography as the late sixties, and early seventies folk singer, Nick Drake. One of the truly amazing things about this singer is that, by just judging him by his exterior, and music, he seems like one of the sweetest hippies of his time, out hippying even Jerry Garcia, a feet many have shot for but fell short. When, simultaneously, his own personallity seems to out-emo any fringe wearing, black coated, pimple infested teenager of the 21st century.
Just by listening to that sofly sung English voice, and listening to that wonderfully plucked guitar, one is swept off into Drakes dreamworld. This world is a magical place where, people sit around in there overgrown backyards, talking to pretty girls, letting their hair grow long, and chasing after those nifty elves that live behind the shed. What makes this world all the more fantastic is that very few people have been there, as Nick Drake isn’t nearly popular enough to attract any kind of pop following. It feels this backyard is occupied primarily by Drake, Neil Young, a 9th Century English Prince, and of course yourself, the listener.
“And now we rise, and we are everywhere, and now we rise, from the ground.”
“You can take the road that takes you to the stars now, I can take the road the will see me clear”
However, after reading in to the character himself, this dreamland begins to deteriorate, or rather alter. Instead of a back yard, it is a small alleyway in Liverpool. And instead of Neil Young, English Princes and pretty girls, you realise that it is just Drake, a guitar and you the listener. Drake rarely perfomed live, in fact almost never. He veered away from any fame that was cast his way, which in reality he deserved. In fact it is said that his own room mate didn’t even know that Drake played guitar until he walked in on him on the act one day, even though Drake had already released two albums. This reclusive Drake killed himself in 1974, overdosing on anti-depressants.
Afer listening to his songs then learning of this, one can do nothing but feel heartbroken.