February 21, 2013

Molly Drake

As little as I knew with any conviction about Nick Drake before hearing his mother Molly Drake's home recordings, a "missing link in the Nick Drake story" according to a press clipping, I'm heartened to read that wikipedia has him known for his "gentle guitar-based songs" (thanks for keeping it mellow, Nick). Less heartening that he was short-lived, but even thirty seconds on youtube (after half an hour with Mrs. Drake's album) makes me wonder if more than one member of the family missed the chance to fully explore their calling. Preserved for more than half a century on tape by Mr. Drake, in spite of my lack of acquaintancy with Nick Drake, I'm eager to hear how others "read" the character of this type of Western traditional music - "intimate" and "confident" are two words that leap to my mind as much as they have other reviewers, an attempt to reconcile the nature of the songs as family recordings and Molly Drake herself as a "performer" performing, speaker speaking, etc. In that sense, this new collection is particular timely, transmitting a capsule view of a different sort of America and a family that shared richly in its creativity. A welcome missive as the world and humanity continue their slow turning into something.

Update: It's been rightly pointed out that the reason the view seemed from a different "sort of America" is because it was really an English "capsule" to begin with. Thanks Tristan!

Stream Molly Drake's recordings on bandcamp and check out the CD + poetry booklet being offered through Alimentation.

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