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  • Nick Drake was a folk singer-songwriter and guitarist who made three albums while he was alive. 

    Although the musician didn’t receive much fanfare or fame while he lived, his music became much better known after his fatal drug overdose on an antidepressant in 1974.

    How Did Nick Drake Die?

    Nick Drake died on November 25, 1974, in his childhood bedroom at his parents’ home in Warwickshire. He was 26 years old. He was found by a housemaid who then alerted his mother. 

    He died from an overdose of amitriptyline, a prescription antidepressant. The coroner officially ruled Drake’s death a suicide, but some family and friends disagreed with that conclusion.

    About Nick Drake

    Nicholas Rodney Drake was born on June 19, 1948 in Rangoon, Myanmar (Burma at the time). However, he was primarily raised in the English village of Tanworth-in-Arden, in a home called Far Leys, with his mom Molly Drake, father Rodney Drake, and sister Gabrielle Drake.

    In 1968, Drake was performing in London when Ashley Hutchings of the folk-rock group Fairport Convention saw him. Shortly after that, while Drake was still a student at the University of Cambridge, he signed with Island Records.

    His first album came out in 1969 and was called Five Leaves Left. It was produced by Fairport Convention’s well-known producer Joe Boyd. Drake’s next album, Bryter Layter, came out in the early 1970s.

    He recorded his final album, Pink Moon, in 1972. He recorded it alone and then checked himself into a psychiatric hospital for a few weeks.

    He would go on to record a few more songs, but those would be his last before he died in 1974.

    Legacy After Death

    After his death, Nick Drake’s music was finally discovered. Other artists performed his music, and his songs have been featured in films, television shows, and commercials. 

    In 1999, the title track of Pink Moon was featured in a Volkswagen Cabriolet commercial. This commercial was the brand’s first to appear on the internet. Because of that commercial, for the first time, Pink Moon made it onto the Billboard Hot 100. 

    Pink Moon, along with River Man, are some of Drake’s most popular songs. In 2004, Island Records released an album of outtakes and remixes of his songs called Made to Love Magic.

    His songs also went on to be in films like The Royal Tenenbaums, Serendipity, and Garden State, and in 2014, his sister wrote a popular book about him titled Remembered for a While.

    Nick Drake’s History Of Substance Abuse & Rehab

    It’s unclear whether Nick Drake struggled with substance abuse or addiction during his lifetime. His overdose of antidepressants is the first known time he abused drugs.

    Did Nick Drake Attend Addiction Treatment?

    Drake was extremely shy and didn’t like performing live or being interviewed. This was part of the reason for his lack of career success. By 1970, he had given up on life and the music industry. He sank into depression and became quite reclusive. 

    Nick Drake never attended addiction treatment, but he did receive treatment for depression at a psychiatric hospital in the 1970s.

    Recovery Is Possible

    Although Nick Drake never lived with addiction, he lived with depression and struggled to overcome his mental health issues. With professional care and ongoing support, you can learn how to manage depression and live a fulfilling life. 

    To learn how we address mental health on an inpatient or outpatient basis, please contact us today.

    Written by Ark Behavioral Health Editorial Team
    ©2024 Ark National Holdings, LLC. | All Rights Reserved.
    This page does not provide medical advice.
    Medically Reviewed by
    Manish Mishra, MBBS
    on February 14, 2023
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