BCB 100 - Nick Drake

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Postby Bungo the Mungo » 05 Jul 2006, 20:45

toomanyhatz wrote:
Tactful Cactus wrote:
toomanyhatz wrote:I was able to judge him solely based on the music. I'm grateful for that fact.


So if you only cottoned onto him a few years ago would you like his
music anyway, or would you retroactively decide not to be a victim of the Volkswagen marketing machine?


I'd like to think so, but the fact that I can't say positively supports my point about how much baggage is carried by a artist's image/reputation. We're rarely able to hear music just as music. Some (Prague resident) people seem to relish that fact, others (like me) bemoan it and try to be as true to the listening experience as possible. I've no doubt that I've failed in this mission at times, but it is my mission- accomplished with Drake only by accident.


:shock:

If it's really only me that you think does this (and there's more to my criticism of Drake than you appear to realise) then it shouldn't bother you.

Anyway, I don't like his music largely 'cos of the music itself. The peripheral aspects just add to the bad taste I get from the whole package.

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Re: BCB 100 - Nick Drake

Postby The Slider » 05 Jul 2006, 23:00

Tactful Cactus wrote:
The Slider wrote:
geoffcowgill wrote:Favorite Album - Bryter Layter

Favorite Song - "Northern Sky"


Needs no more be said.


I don't know why Bryter Layter seems to be his definitive work in some peoples eyes. I'm not saying its a bad album, far from it, but FLL and Pink Moon are so great too (better even, in my opinion). Those feckin' instrmentals put me off. Joe Boyd (in new book) swears Nick only put them on there in an act of defiance against him. Some of his best songs are on BL, clearly, but Five Leaves Left is a better album.


In many ways I like the instrumentals best.
But they do all sound like the theme tunes to ITV serieses from the very early 70s, don't they? :lol:

In some ways I would actually say it were the other way around - some of his bettter songs on 5LL but BL is the better album - it doesn't have Man In A Shed on it for starters- but that is a matter for personal choice I suppose.

I always loved that version of Time Has Told Me that (I think it was) you sent me with Richard cunting Thompson's annoying presence removed.
It sounds so much better.
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Re: BCB 100 - Nick Drake

Postby Neil Jung » 05 Jul 2006, 23:11

geoffcowgill wrote:Favorite Album - Bryter Layter

Favorite Song - "Northern Sky"



Is the correct answer.

I first heard him on the El Pea double sampler in '73. My recollection is that the sleeve said One Of These Things First but it was actually Northern Sky - can anyone confirm or deny this?
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Postby toomanyhatz » 05 Jul 2006, 23:21

Pop Pup wrote:
toomanyhatz wrote:
Tactful Cactus wrote:
toomanyhatz wrote:I was able to judge him solely based on the music. I'm grateful for that fact.


So if you only cottoned onto him a few years ago would you like his
music anyway, or would you retroactively decide not to be a victim of the Volkswagen marketing machine?


I'd like to think so, but the fact that I can't say positively supports my point about how much baggage is carried by a artist's image/reputation. We're rarely able to hear music just as music. Some (Prague resident) people seem to relish that fact, others (like me) bemoan it and try to be as true to the listening experience as possible. I've no doubt that I've failed in this mission at times, but it is my mission- accomplished with Drake only by accident.


:shock:

If it's really only me that you think does this (and there's more to my criticism of Drake than you appear to realise) then it shouldn't bother you.

Anyway, I don't like his music largely 'cos of the music itself. The peripheral aspects just add to the bad taste I get from the whole package.


Of course I don't think it's only you that does this, in fact I made a point of saying we all do it. You're just the most blatant about it. You do occasionally talk about how music sounds, but you spend a lot more time talking about where artists shop, what image they have, how they dress and how well-liked they are by other BCBers. Which is fine, there are times I even find it refreshing. And I love our combative relationship and relish giving you a hard time about it, so I can honestly say it doesn't bother me. And hopefully it doesn't need to be said that I suspect you're a nice person, probably a hell of a lot of fun to have a drink with, and kind to children and small animals as well. But your need to contextualize the hell out of everything to the point of disembowelment makes you full of crap a whole lot of the time. I can't not call you on it, any more than you can not yell at me for liking "How Soon is Now." To each his own, that's why I love it here.
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Postby RcL » 06 Jul 2006, 02:51

the masked man wrote: "River Man" is by far and away my favourite song.


Have to disagree with you big time there, MM. I like nearly everything Nick Drake did, but River Man is his most overrated song - dull, far too long, uninspiring - it's his Knockin On Heaven's Door in fact. It's Paul Weller's favourite song (probably) - enough said.

Album: Bryter Layter
Song: Joey

How come no one mentions Joey, eh? Clearly his only rival to Northern Sky as best song... and given that NS is too reliant on non-Nick input for its charms, I'm going Joey...

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Postby take5_d_shorterer » 06 Jul 2006, 03:21

toomanyhatz raises an issue that probably deserves its own thread, namely how much do you think all the extra-musical baggage around a performer affects the way you listen to that performer.

Let's stick here to Nick Drake though. Instead of saying what my favorite Drake stuff is, I'd rather continue on the line of inquiry that TM Hatz has started.

I had heard about the VW commercial, but I never saw it until I looked around on youtube a long time after the commercial originally ran. Initially I heard about Drake sort of as a spin-off of Richard Thompson's projects (yes, I know, that's a too Fairport-centric universe, but that's me), and I thought to myself, well, just for the sake of completeness, I probably ought to listen to this at some point.

When I finally heard it, my initial thought was "well, this just isn't as traditional and abrasive as Thompson. Drake's doing this sort of odd meter like Denny did in 'Autopsy', but it's not as in-your-face.'' After a while, I finally gave up on trying to see Drake as having much of anything to do with Fairport or Thompson. Thompson's guitar playing is like pulling nails out of a coffin (Marcus's description). Drake's is like rubbing your fingertips on unvarnished wood. That's just a totally different aesthetic.

It's then that I started thinking about Drake as being like a lot more subtle version of Paul Simon. I mean, Drake's vocals are far better than Simon's, his songs are less precious, his guitar playing is much, much better.

Drake simply had the introspective thing down better than anyone else did. You can hear him singing into the soundhole of his guitar. None of his stuff is meant for you or me. We're just intruders.

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Postby Phenomenal Cat » 06 Jul 2006, 04:21

take5_d_shorterer wrote:.
Drake simply had the introspective thing down better than anyone else did. You can hear him singing into the soundhole of his guitar. None of his stuff is meant for you or me. We're just intruders.


He's not exactly the six string Sylvia Plath. I believe that Drake sought adulation and acceptance like most people, but he was poorly equipped (too bloody sensitive like Brian Jones) to be a proper careerist. His lack of success hurt him deeply, and many in the Drake: Mere Mortal camp believe that much of his morose persona was calculated. (I admit that Pink Moon and "Black Eyed Dog" are intensely private affairs, in agreement with take5).

I think his music is excellent, especially the truly creepy "River Man" and "Parasite".

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Postby toomanyhatz » 06 Jul 2006, 04:55

Raise your hand, anyone that reckoned on P-Cat as a Drake fan.

I sure didn't.
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Postby Phenomenal Cat » 06 Jul 2006, 05:04

I mistakenly bought Bryter Layter thinking it was the new Darkness album.
Now, I’m liberal, but to a degree
I want everybody to be free
But if you think that I’ll let Rick Santorum
Move in next door and marry my son
You must think I’m crazy!

But somehow when you smile, I can brave bad weather.

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Postby The Slider » 06 Jul 2006, 05:54

RcL wrote:How come no one mentions Joey, eh?


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It is too redolent of yer man above.

RcL wrote:Clearly his only rival to Northern Sky as best song... and given that NS is too reliant on non-Nick input for its charms, I'm going Joey...


Not that I usually take much notice of them, but this one I love for its lyric.
So for me, the choirs of angels etc are lovely but are not what it it relies on.
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Postby johnnydefault » 06 Jul 2006, 08:25

Bit of a conundrum here - as an album from start to finish I like Five Leaves left.

Fave individual tracks though are 'Northern Sky' and 'Fly' from Bryter Layter

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Postby Chestnuts roasting on an open Fireplug » 06 Jul 2006, 08:55

"Northern Sky" will be the first song played after my wedding ceremony next month. It's untouchable.

Plus I'm saving "Let me put my love into you" by AC/DC for the reception.

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Postby Shaun » 06 Jul 2006, 11:21

Album: Bryter Layter

Track: Time Of No Reply
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Postby zoomboogity » 06 Jul 2006, 11:23

Another fan since the late '70s. His current "hip" status doesn't detract from my enjoyment - I always prefer to share my favorite music than to keep it to myself in some elitist vacuum. Still haven't seen the VW commercial, but would be interested in reading the bio.

Each album has a different mood, so none "better" than the others, but my favorite is Bryter Layter - it always gives me the feeling of driving down Pacific Coast Highway when the weather warms up in spring.

favorites include (but definitely not limited to):
Clothes Of Sand
Fly
From The Morning
Hazey Jane II
Northern Sky
One Of These Things First
Place To Be
Saturday Sun
Strolling Down The Highway (Bert Jansch song from Tanworth-In-Arden demos)
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Postby Prez! » 06 Jul 2006, 11:52

Favourite Song:- The Thoughts of Mary Jane

I've only come to Nicks music recently, mainly, it must be said, through compilations, so the choosing of a favourite album is harder.

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Postby Oscar » 06 Jul 2006, 12:40

Why is everyone saying Bryter Layter? That's just a stupid thing to say really.


Album - Five Leaves Left

Song - Cello Song

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Postby Tapiocahead » 06 Jul 2006, 13:19

Well I've had a Volkswagon for years, long before Nick Drake was on the advert.
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Postby johnnydefault » 06 Jul 2006, 13:48

Tapioca, still Tapioca wrote:Well I've had a Volkswagon for years, long before Nick Drake was on the advert.


Well I seen him in 1966 playing some early versions of his songs at the Torbothie Wheeltappers and Shunters Club - just before he grew his hair changed his name to Nick Drake and learned to play guitar (he was on accordian that night)

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Postby Tactful Cactus » 06 Jul 2006, 15:20

RcL wrote:but River Man is his most overrated song - dull, far too long, uninspiring


Im with the masked man on this one. I think River Man is phenomenal, nothing like Dylans plodding Knocking On Heavens Door. Its not just a sombre old folkie song, there's an edginess to it, punctuated by those brilliant chords he plays. True, its a fairly linear, repititious song but the strings make up for that, the arrnagement is superb. Its an eerie sounding song and thats what I love about it. Its up there with Eleanor Ribgy.

All recorded live in the studio too, bloody marvelous.

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Re: BCB 100 - Nick Drake

Postby JQW » 06 Jul 2006, 15:28

The Slider wrote:
In many ways I like the instrumentals best.
But they do all sound like the theme tunes to ITV serieses from the very early 70s, don't they? :lol:


They most likely were used as theme tunes! The local TV stations up here (both ITV and BBC) used to pinch all kinds of things for their theme tunes back then, particularly if instrumental. I first heard Tull's 'Bourre' as the them to a local TV show called Naturewatch.
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