If Vashti Bunyan is the queen of psychedelic folk Nick Drake is certainly king. He did not achieve fame in his own lifetime (very sadly he comitted suicide in 1974)but his reputation has gradually grown, making him a significant English singer/songwriters
One of the problems when listeining to him is his ghost hanging over the music. While many of the songs are sad the beauty of the music is perhaps better appreciated without the knowledge of his long struggle with depression and insomnia. There is still, however, a great melancholy in his music, what Rolling Stone called "as if he were viewing his life from a great, unbridgeable distance'
Many cite him as an important influence; Kate Bush, Lucinda Williams, Paul Weller. Dream Academy's 'Life in a Northern Town' was actually about Nick.
Have a listen;