Nick Drake: The Life


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About the Author

Richard Morton Jack's other books include Galactic Ramble, Endless Trip and Labyrinth. He has overseen reissues of many classic rock, jazz and folk albums, and edits the music history magazine Flashback. He is the co-founder of the music marketplace and archive


This is the book we've been waiting for - the one Nick's legacy deserves and so badly needs. Richard Morton Jack has reconstructed Nick's life with great sensitivity and care, and in remarkable detail. It is a biography to be treasured
*Joe Boyd*

The definitive account. Faultless in its detail. The Drake completist could ask for nothing else
*Daily Telegraph *****

Morton Jack's book honours its title: it is The Life, not just a death, a rich depiction of Drake's world and the way he moved through it . . . this book might be as close as anyone's going to get to finding him
*Sunday Times*

The most factual and detailed picture of the singer's twenty-six years on earth we are ever likely to read, debunking many of the myths

Illuminating. The definitive word on Drake

Drake's flickering presence in 1970s folk-rock, recognised as a maestro by peers but not the public, is told with sensitivity and skill
*Financial Times*

The account worthy of a musical messiah
*The Spectator*

Richard Morton Jack's Nick Drake: The Life is a model of its kind - a biography that clears up dozens of mysteries and permits the reader to contemplate something larger: the lasting wonder and power of Drake's songs. Nick Drake: The Life is the book we have needed
*Wall Street Journal*

Famously, no film of Drake exists, but through its granular detail . . . this book feels as close as you might come to seeing him in motion again
*The Times*

Through the careful accretion of granular details a fully formed human being emerges from the myth. Particularly welcome are the vignettes that show Drake at his most un-wraith-like . . . These very human moments shine like starlight
*Irish Independent*

Morton Jack has done a tremendous job

The most complete and authoritative study of Nick Drake's life and work to date, an outstanding document of an extraordinary artist
*Irish Times*

[Nick Drake's] story has been told before but the detail and research evident here must qualify as the definitive last word
*Hot Press best books of 2023*

Written with the blessing and involvement of his Estate and his sister Gabrielle (who wrote a foreword) Richard Morton Jack gives a private insight, courtesy of personal documents like letters, journals, and diaries
*Sunday Independent music memoirs of 2023*

This phenomenally detailed biography reveals how much those who knew Drake loved, admired and puzzled over him

Morton Jack resists the temptation to romanticise Drake's life

Morton Jack's book is the first of its kind to be written in tandem with Drake's family and seeks to bring an equal measure of light and shade to an English musical figurehead who has become uniquely mythologised . . . Morton Jack's book is founded on "minutiae", bringing its subject into unparalleled focus
*i News*

Nick Drake's story seems made for myth
***** Record Collector*

Reading this immensely detailed and thoroughly engaging biography is something of a mixed joy for a fan like me . . . I knew the story of course. But it's told here in such a stark and unflinching manner that it's a bit like being hooked by a dark, sad and tortuous thriller
*Nation Cymru*

Nick Drake: The Life sets out to finally provide a detailed account of his life as the first biography of Drake to have the blessing and involvement from his sister and estate. Jack draws on extensive research material, including new interviews with friends, family, and collaborators, as well as previously unseen essays, private correspondence, and his father's diaries
*Bristol 24/7*

This is a terrific biography - a good introduction if you know nothing about him and yet a good buy for those who do, as it will bring light onto this extraordinary talent
*Lindfield Life*

The detail and research evident here must qualify as the definitive last word.
*Hot Press*

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