The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #126718   Message #2820127
Posted By: GUEST,matt milton
24-Jan-10 - 06:07 AM
Thread Name: Nick Drake - hype and reality
Subject: RE: Nick Drake - hype and reality
"Nick clearly invented his singing voice, and anyone with ears would say that it doesn't go with his background! You'll be telling me next that The Beatles sang with strong Liverpool accents!"

From what I've heard of Nick Drake's speaking voice, he sang very much as he spoke. He sings in a soft English middle-class accent. Like a (much more) effete, slightly feminised Syd Barrett. He might have softened some of his Ts to Ds, but that's about it.

Listening to Nick singing the blues standards he sings on Family Tree, I always think it's quite impressive that, as a teenager, he had the maturity and confidence to sing them in his public-school educated, English accent, making no concessions whatsoever to how other people would expect them to be sung. (Unlike almost every other non-US singer who's ever sang the blues...)

You might say, as many probably have, that he sounds ridiculous doing so. Nick Drake's voice took me a while to get used to, I must admit. I just thought, initially, he sounded like a wet blanket. But the songs - that is, those of Family Tree and Pink Moon, unimpeded by the schmaltzy, unnecessary production of his other albums – won me over by virtue of being bloody great.