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Nicholas Rodney Drake (19 June 1948 – 25 November 1974) was an English singer-songwriter and musician known for his acoustic guitar-based songs. He failed to find a wide audience during his lifetime, but his work has since achieved wider recognition.Drake signed to Island Records when he was 20, while a student at the University of Cambridge, and released his debut album, Five Leaves Left, in 1969. By 1972, he had recorded two more albums, Bryter Layter and Pink Moon. Neither sold more than 5,000 copies on initial release. His reluctance to perform live or give interviews contributed to his lack of commercial success. No footage of the adult Drake has been released, only still photographs.Drake is believed to have suffered from depression, reflected in his lyrics. After making Pink Moon, he withdrew from performance and recording, retreating to his parents' home in rural Warwickshire. At the age of 26, Drake died from an overdose of approximately 30 amitriptyline pills, a prescribed antidepressant. His cause of death was determined as suicide.The 1979 release of the retrospective album Fruit Tree triggered a reassessment of Drake's music. By the mid-1980s, he was credited as an influence by such artists as Robert Smith, David Sylvian, and Peter Buck. In 1985, the Dream Academy reached the UK and US charts with "Life in a Northern Town", a song written for and dedicated to Drake. By the early 1990s, he had come to represent a "doomed romantic" musician in the UK music press. The first Drake biography was published in 1997, followed in 1998 by the documentary film A Stranger Among Us. In 1999, his song "Pink Moon" was used in a Volkswagen commercial, resulting in an increase in his U.S. album sales. By 2014, more than 2.4 million Drake albums had been sold in the UK and the US.

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