The Nick Drake Song Collection by Nick DrakeMusician’s musician
As anyone likely to be in the market for this book will already know, Nick Drake was possibly unique.
Nic Jones was an astonishingly original guitarist, master of wild tunings; Gordon Lightfoot a consummate songwriter; Art Garfunkel a sensitive and distinctive singer. But none of them combined all these attributes as Nick Drake did. Only Joni Mitchell seems comparable, and she didn’t record until her late twenties; Nick made Five Leaves Left when he wasn’t even old enough to sign the recording contract, and five years later he was dead.
Nick’s music, then, is more than the sum of its parts, the melody, guitar-work, lyrics and voice interweaving to produce an “emergent phenomenon” — the Nick Drake magic.
How did he do it? If we expect to find a clue, it should surely be in a book like the present one. Here, however, we have some good news and some bad news. First, the good news.
Contents of the book
Nick’s legacy is three studio albums, some alternative- and out-takes, plus a few odds and ends, mostly collected on Time of No Reply. All the tunes from the main albums are notated here including the instrumentals from Bryter Later. There are also five songs from Time of No Reply: the title track, Rider on the Wheel, Black Eyed Dog, Hanging on a Star, and Voice from a Mountain. I Was Made to Love Magic, Joey, Clothes of Sand, Mayfair and Strange meeting II are omitted.
The book is intelligently and attractively designed. There is a thoughtful preface by Nick’s preferred arranger, Robert Kirby, and then the complete lyrics are given, interspersed with many interesting and unfamiliar family photographs of Nick.
The songs are then presented in staff notation, grouped by album.
Now the bad news. The format throughout — unfortunately for guitarists — is vocal line plus piano. Guitar tunings and capo positions are specified, and chord symbols and fretboard diagrams appear above the staff, but there is no tab. Even “Horn”, a pure guitar piece, is presented on a piano staff.
Also unfortunately for guitarists , the songs are notated at absolute pitch — so that (for instance) The Thoughts of Mary Jane (which Nick plays in A capo’d at 6) appears in E?.
And so we come to the crucial question.
How accurate are the transcriptions?
I haven’t yet had a chance to work right through the book, but the melody lines appear to be accurate, as do the lyrics — something one should be able to take for granted, but often can’t.
However, the accompaniments are not Nick’s but arrangements by one Roger Day (it says in small print at the end). Where the guitar part is easily played on the piano — as with the aforementioned “Horn” — they are reasonably close; but this is not often the case with Nick’s music. To be brutally frank, many of these arrangements could fairly be called travesties. One of the constant joys of discovering Nick’s music, is that if you can only find the right tuning, many of his pieces almost play themselves. But here, most of that is lost.
For instance , Road (bizarrely labelled Radio on my copy of Pink Moon, incidentally) is a miniature masterpiece; the transcription, however, is a mere shadow of the original, and even the bass line is wrong. Furthermore, I’m not even convinced that the tuning given (DGDDAD capo’d at 4) is correct; it makes parts of the piece (the original, that is) virtually impossible, or at least very difficult. EADEBE capo’d at 2 seems to me more likely, and certainly much easier.
Horn, on the other hand — a very simple piece — is completely accurate.
If you’re a pianist, or if you’re just interested in the lyrics and melody lines, then this is a good, even an excellent book.
If you’re a guitarist who wants to know what Nick played, however, then things are less rosy. It seems to me that an honest effort has been made to present information for guitarists; but it just isn’t adequate.
You can certainly use this book as a starting point. If you have the time, energy and inclination, you can (as I have done, out of curiosity) copy a piano part here into a notation program such as Finale or Sibelius, and transpose it to the original guitar (i.e. sans capo) key. If you keep the voices in separate layers, you can then copy and past the bass and treble clefs into a single guitar (8vb treble) clef. However, you will not in most cases get a correct guitar part without a lot of tweaking.
“More than accurate”? I think not.
The sad part of all this is that no one can now publish accurate guitar transcriptions without inviting a copyright infringement suit.
Pink Moon (Nick Drake) Fingerstyle Guitar
Pink Moon sheet music for guitar (tablature)
These bits repeat a few times - the only other section is the instrumental bit where the piano comes in. The chord sequence for this is : F -- 0 -- 0 0 -- 0 0 D 0 -- 0 0 -- 0 0 -- 0 0 G 2 -- 2 0 -- 0 0 -- 0 2 D 0 -- 0 2 -- 2 0 -- 0 0 A 0 -- 0 2 -- 2 5 -- 5 0 D 0 -- 0 2 -- 2 5 -- 5 0 That's about all Hope you like it! You'll have to work out the rhythm by playing along to the tape. To help learn it, here are the chords used during the song.
Pink Moon differs from Drake's previous albums in that it was recorded without a backing band , featuring just Drake on vocals, acoustic guitar and a brief piano riff overdubbed onto the title track. Released two years before Drake's death in November , at the age of twenty-six, the lyrical content of Pink Moon has often been attributed to Drake's ongoing battle with depression. Pink Moon , like Drake's previous studio albums, did not sell well during his lifetime, but has since garnered significant critical acclaim. Nick Drake's first two albums with Island Records, Five Leaves Left and Bryter Layter , had sold poorly, and combined with Drake's reluctance to perform live or engage in album promotion, Island was not confident of another album from Drake. In he saw a psychiatrist and was prescribed antidepressants which he was reluctant to take due to the stigma associated with depression and his fears concerning the medication's interaction with marijuana , which he smoked regularly.
700+ Guitar Tunings
Pink Moon sheet music for guitar tablature By Nick Drake - digital sheet music to download. Search all Sheet Music Advanced Search. Instruments Instruments. Nick Drake: Pink Moon for guitar tablature , intermediate sheet music. NOTE: The image above is just a preview of the first page of this item. Buy this item to display, print, and enjoy the complete music.
Sign In. This is a 1 page sample. You'll receive all 4 pages after purchase. Your high-resolution PDF file will be ready to download in the original published key. River Flows In You. Piano Solo. Don't Stop Me Now.