This Day in History: November 25

British singer-songwriter Nick Drake dies of a prescription drug overdose at his home in Warwickshire, England on this day in 1974.

Drake only released three albums in his lifetime: Five Leaves Left, Bryter Later and Pink Moon. Although his albums sold poorly in his lifetime, Drake’s music has enjoyed a massive resurgence in popularity over the course of the last 15 years. Although Drake had a steady following throughout the 1980’s, the posthumous advancement of his work to the forefront of pop culture can be primarily attributed to the use of Drake’s song Pink Moon in a Volkswagen commercial in 2000. The simple, lovely melody struck a chord with audiences, and Drake sold more albums that year alone than he had during his lifetime.

Drake has been cited as an influence by artists such as REM, Badly Drawn Boy, Kate Bush, Paul Weller, and Robert Smith of The Cure, who took their name from a Drake lyric: “a troubled cure for a troubled mind.” You can also hear Drake’s influence in the music of Alexi Murdoch, Iron and Wine,  Belle and Sebastian, and Jeff Buckley.

Listed below is a link to the song that brought Nick Drake into the popular consciousness: Pink Moon