HAD HE LIVED, NICK DRAKE would have been 70 this year, and fêted as one of our greatest songwriters. Yet, as friends and peers explore in the latest MOJO magazine (in UK shops from Tuesday, January 23), he wasn’t made for his times, or built to withstand the pressures of the music business.
In MOJO magazine’s 17-page celebration, Richard Thompson, Bridget St John, Joe Boyd, Linda Thompson, producer Joe Boyd and engineer John Wood talk about their friend’s music and explore his enigmatic personality, while MOJO writers tell the stories behind his magical songs.
“It’s fashionable now to believe Nick was gay,” Linda Thompson tells MOJO’s Andrew Male, “but I think, he couldn’t really relate to either sex. Affection from him was hard won. If he kissed you, you never forgot it. You’d wake up in the night and remember it. Every fibre of his being seemed to be sunk into his music.”
“If He Kissed You, You Never Forgot It. You’d Wake Up In The Night And Remember It.” LINDA THOMPSON
Drake died in 1974, of a tragic overdose of antidepressants, long before his records were widely known. In fact it wasn’t until the mid-’90s that recognition truly dawned, as a new generation of artists, including Paul Weller, Beth Orton and others began a posthumous booster campaign, fuelled by MOJO magazine’s first Nick Drake cover story in January 1997 and sealed when the title track of Drake’s 1971 Pink Moon album appeared in a Volkswagen VW Cabrio advert in 1999.