r&r diary – I think of Nick Drake – 02.11.13

nick drakeA bleak, cold, day in Chicago. The weather, the gray gloom, makes me think of Nick Drake and his album “Five Leaves Left.” It was released in 1969, but I didn’t “discover” it until much later, sometime in the mid-eighties. It’s an album “out of time,” from another time and place. And it’s a record that seems timeless. Surely a work of art.

Nick was a shy, sensitive soul; a dark, brooding presence, a young man with a delicate, whispery voice, and a unique guitar style that employed odd tunings and phrasings. Nick’s songs are beautiful, fully-formed things. The record is profound, delicate, dark, and mercury-light. Beautiful, haunting.

Nick died young. Adds to the legend. But it’s the record, the sequence of dark, crystalline songs that still moves me. It’s a work that is so alive. All these many years later, on the street; the dirty snow, the dark and bare trees, the landscape of gray, I think of Nick Drake. – Jammer

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