top of page

Nick Drake

Today we will tell you about the thrilling artist Nick Drake, who died when he was only 26 years old.

(Photo: Promotional Picture)

1. Nick Drake was born on June 19, 1948, in Rangoon, Burma, to a father - Rodney Drake, an engineer at the British company "Bombay Burmah Trading Corporation" and a mother - Mary (Molly) Lloyd who was a singer.

2. In 1950 the family moved to India and a year later to England where they settled in a village in Warwickshire County south of Birmingham.

3. Nick and his older sister Gabriel absorbed music from their parents during their childhood, mostly from their mother who was a singer and played the piano.

4. Already at a young age his mother encouraged Nick to learn to play the piano.

5. Nick wrote and composed songs when he was a child, which he also recorded on a reel tape that his mother had at home.

6. During his studies at school Nick excelled in sports, especially in running, and even represented the school in competitions and broke records that were not surpassed for years later.

7. Hard to believe, but Nick also played on the school's rugby team and for the last two years of his studies also served as its captain.

8. At the same time, Drake played the piano as part of the school choir, where he also learned to play the clarinet and saxophone.

9. In the mid-1960s he formed his first band "the Perfumed Gardeners", along with four of his school friends. Nick sang and played the piano and saxophone. The band played original material alongside covers for bands like "Hirdbirdz" and "Manfred Mann".

10. Opinions are divided on this matter, but the well-known Chris de Burgh was part of the same band or tried to get accepted into it but was rejected due to his musical taste.


11. In 1965 Drake bought his first acoustic guitar and began to specialize in playing it.

12. In 1967 Drake began his undergraduate studies in English literature at a branch of the University of Cambridge.

13. At the same time he began performing in local clubs and cafes with original songs he wrote, inspired by his favorite poets, while perfecting his unique playing technique on an acoustic guitar.

14. During that time Drake became acquainted with folk music from England and the USA and was mainly influenced by artists like, Bob Dylan, Donovan, and Van Morrison.

15. In February 1968, Ashley Hutchings, the bass player of the "Fairport Convention" band, noticed him during a performance and was impressed by his skills.

16. Ashley Hutchings introduced Drake to Joe Boyd, the owner of a production company who produced his band "Fairport Convention" and also worked with John Martyn and "Pink Floyd".

17. That same year Drake had already signed a recording contract with the "Island record" company with which Boyd was in connection with, and began work on his first album.

18. In September 1969, Drake released his first folk rock-style album, "Five Leaves Left". The album featured other musicians from the folk-rock scene, including "Fairport Convention" guitarist.

19. After his death, the name of the album took on a chilling meaning, as Drake passed away five years after its release.

20. In November 1970 Drake released his second album "Bryter Layter", the album featured a more diverse use of musical instruments such as keyboards and also included a performance by John Cale from the Velvet Underground, who also produced one of the standout songs from the album "Northern Sky".

21. In February 1972 Drake released his third and final album "Pink Moon". It was a short album that included 11 songs spread over less than half an hour. The album is characterized by minimalism and melancholy and it hardly included any instruments other than Drake's acoustic guitar.

22. The three albums failed commercially in real-time and did not sell more than 5,000 each.

23. Following the failure of the three albums, Drake decided to stop playing music. He left London, returned to his parents' home, sank into a deep depression, became isolated, and had little contact with people.

24. After leaving the music world, Drake tried to work for a computer company, but retired after one day of work.

25. In 1974, Drake hospitalized himself in a psychiatric hospital where he stayed for five weeks.


26. On November 25, 1974, Drake's mother entered his room and found him lifeless.

27. Drake was found dead after taking an overdose of antidepressants and the cause of death was determined to be suicide although some believe it was an accident.

28. Drake's ashes were buried under the oak tree in the village where he grew up in Warwickshire County.

29. On the tombstone are engraved words from the second verse of the song "From The Morning" which closes Drake's latest album. And these are the words: "Now we rise, And we are everywhere."

30. In 2004, actor Brad Pitt, a fan of Drake, hosted a program in his memory on BBC Radio 2. During the show, a lost track of Drake "Tow the Line" was first played.

31. Unfortunately the success came to Drake only after his death and he did not get to see it.

32. In 1999, Drake's second album, "Bryter Layter", reached number one on the Guardian's 100 Best Alternative Albums list of all time.

33. Drake's three albums in "Rolling Stone" Magazine's Top 500 Albums of All Time.

34. Drake has influenced many artists from diverse music genres, including Dave Grohl, Eddie Vedder, Norah Jones, Kate Bush, Paul Weller, "The Black Crowes", "The Verve", "R.E.M.", And even Tom Petrover and Orit Shahaf from "HaYehudim" who all mentioned Nick Drake as inspiration.

Follow us on Facebook or Subscribe to our website

"Face/Off" - Israel's Rock Blog & Podcast


Enjoying the Blog? Subscribe to get it right to your mail!

Thank you !!

bottom of page