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 Post subject: The bad trip theory: any proofs?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 12, 2010 12:24 am 

Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2007 10:13 pm
Posts: 34
Location: Naples, Italy.
I strongly strongly strongly think Nick's 1971-1974 deep and fatal depression was genetic, or just "something" related to his naturally shy and susceptible way to be - and that the lack of success just aggravated and largely increased. Period.

I just don't like this forced "bad LSD trip which damaged his brain on a chemical level" theory at all, because there are no proofs of it, and Nick was STILL able to think and make wonderful music in 1972 anyway --- listen 'PINK MOON'.

And when would this "bad trip" have ever occurred anyway? 1967? 1969? 1970?
So please, is there any FACTUAL validity and proof for the "bad trip" theory, apart speculation from John Martyn and someone else?

Thank you so much!


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2010 3:09 am 

Joined: Thu Feb 19, 2009 3:22 am
Posts: 171
Tiziano in my own reading as I recall and as you say there never seemed to exist documented evidence of a bad trip. Or even LSD or heroin use at all. Just speculation. Others no doubt know more than I do and if I am wrong let them come forward.

Also my impression as I have said before is that Nick had some probably intrinsic neurochemical disorder beyond ordinary depression. I think the main reason I say this is because of accounts of his having so much difficulty in later times communicating and inter-relating at all. And because many times it seems such disorders first manifest in early adulthood and with rather sudden onset. And based on limited experience I would not attribute such behavior to use of the drugs mentioned.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 26, 2012 10:04 am 

Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2012 10:41 am
Posts: 114
Location: Louisiana (US Deep South)
I tend to agree with both of you (here I go zombifying old threads again, but it's 3 am here and I have nobody to discuss this stuff with).

I have wondered, too, if the meds he was on may have caused cognitive decline. I've experienced that delightful side effect, and it's not something I'd wish on anybody. I've read quotes by him that seem to indicate this was the case ("I used to have a brain..."), God love him.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2012 1:44 am 

Joined: Tue Jan 25, 2011 11:57 pm
Posts: 245
Location: United Kingdom
There are a few references to drug use as I vaguely recall but they are few and far between. In Arthur Lubow’s essay Remember Nick Drake there are passages alluding to drug use, most of which were edited out for the Fruit Tree liner. There is a passage where Nick is quoted as having tried every drug apart from heroin.
During one of Nick’s frequent visits to John and Sheila Wood’s house in Suffolk, Sheila asked if there was a time in the past where things had all gone wrong, to which he replied “It hadn’t gone wrong, it had changed”.

There is an interesting book called Touched With Fire which delves deep into the relationship between manic-depression and the artistic temperament, drawing from the writings of Blake, Keats, Byron &c, with extensive research into the tumultuous moods and variations of the illness. It is worth reading.

Although a bad episode using hallucinogens may not be completely unfathomable, it coldly turns a blind eye to the severity and devastating effects a depressive illness has on mind and soul.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 2:59 am 

Joined: Tue Jan 25, 2011 11:57 pm
Posts: 245
Location: United Kingdom
This site by Michael Organ, for those whom have not already exhumed, contains a very interesting collection of information and photographs, and discusses the controversy over Nick Drake’s death and apparent drug use:

http://www.uow.edu.au/~morgan/drake1.htm


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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2012 3:27 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 13, 2011 1:26 pm
Posts: 103
Location: Berwick-upon-Tweed
what about heroin? from when nick recorded Bryter Layter and hung out with John Cale there is a strong posibility that he had more than a passing interest in heroin. Im not claiming that he was on it until his last days but im sure if he had flirted with the drug and had taken it for a while this would defnitly contribute to his depression/downward spiral

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