Bert Jansch's debut single on heroin addiction

Bert Jansch

Needle Of Death


Release Date: April 15th, 1965

Words by: Sam Pethers
April 16th, 1965


On April 16th 1965, Scottish folk singer Bert Jansch released his debut self titled album. The album was recorded using a single microphone in his London apartment, and it featured his most famous track titled "Needle Of Death".

"Needle Of Death" marked the increasing use of heroin amoung youths in London.

In 2010, Jansch said that the song was written about the death of his friend and fellow folksinger, Buck Polly, who had died of a heroin overdose.

Remarking on the incident, Jansch said that one day he was with Buck Polly, and the next day he was gone: "we went up to Goodge Street, a pub there called Finch's. Buck scored from a dealer. And the next day, I'd heard he'd died."

In 2014, "Needle Of Death" was included on Neil Young's album A letter Home, which was recorded at Jack White's Third Man Records in a 1947 Voice-O-Graph recording booth.

Bert Jansch's debut single on heroin addiction Bert Jansch's debut single 'Needle Of Death' was written about heroin addiction.

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