Cat Stevens

English singer-songwriter, instrumentalist and activist Cat Stevens

Yusuf Islam, commonly known by his former stage name Cat Stevens, is a British singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, humanitarian, education philanthropist, and prominent convert to Islam. His early 1970s record albums Tea for the Tillerman and Teaser and the Firecat were both certified triple platinum in the United States by the RIAA.
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Biography
Cat Stevens's personal information overview.
Birthday
21 July 1948
News
News about Cat Stevens from around the web
Yusuf/Cat Stevens taps classic sound in new 'The Laughing Apple' album
LATimes - 5 months
An inescapable sense of foreboding runs through “Blackness of the Night,” the opening track from “The Laughing Apple,” the new album by Yusuf, aka Cat Stevens. “In the blackness of the night I seem to wander endlessly, with a hope burning out deep inside,” Yusuf sings in the same soft, gravelly...
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 LATimes article
On the Culture Front: Music from the Underground, Part 8
Huffington Post - about 1 year
Photo courtesy of Wicklow Atwater Listening to Wicklow Atwater is a pure adrenaline rush, like having a chair smashed over your head during a bar fight. It's brash, hard-hitting and not the least bit subtle. None of these are criticisms though as it's a lot of fun to tap into so much pure Id. The seventeen tracks of "The Fallen Flame String Band" are a quick listen propelled by the momentum of furiously picked banjo and mandolin riffs. The most tuneful one is the backbone of "Sleeping Through", which is set to a relatively slower tempo and features a bit of self-examination. "Minimum Wage" is a more apt example of the group's blunt lyricism. "Your boss is a jerk. Your boss is a slob, but you're too scared to quit your job" is bellowed with breakneck pacing. The heart of the song though is the line "getting paid minimum wage is a system that we can't beat." Other songs like "Inside You" hit a crasser tone with lines like "I don't love you. I don't need you. I just want to be inside...
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 Huffington Post article
Yusuf / Cat Stevens Lovingly Remakes His Very First Song For Third Man Records
NPR - over 1 year
While in Nashville, Yusuf / Cat Stevens was asked by Jack White's Third Man Records to do something special. The result is this remake of a song released 50 years ago, "I Love My Dog."
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 NPR article
How To Be Wisely Vulnerable: When To 'Feel' And When To Avoid
Huffington Post - over 1 year
I recently broke things off with a guy because I felt too vulnerable. I hadn’t experienced “those kind” of feelings for someone in ages, and it left me paralyzingly uncomfortable. Now look, a shit-ton of anxiety is a natural symptom of falling for someone, and feeling vulnerable in relationships is necessary; however this felt extreme. I tried to sit with the discomfort and “be cool,” chalking my distrust up to past betrayals or attachment issues. But something wasn’t right. My spidey-sense kept going OFF, so I honored my intuition and called it quits. Initially, I felt shame for doing this: as someone who preaches vulnerability and opening up to uncomfortable feelings, I felt like a hypocrite. But when a week later he “came clean” and revealed he was not only engaged(!!!), but he’d been playing another girl the whole time as well (#newyorkdating), I felt pretty fucking pleased with my decision. So how do we know when to flex our “emotional tolerance muscles,” opening up to vu...
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 Huffington Post article
Yusuf/Cat Stevens marks 50th anniversary at Pantages
LATimes - over 1 year
Perhaps it’s relatively easy to put on a show as thoroughly engaging, and emotionally and spiritually rich, as the one Yusuf, the former Cat Stevens, pulled off Thursday at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood. Just write a couple of dozen eminently catchy pop songs and combine them with a life story...
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 LATimes article
Yusuf/Cat Stevens marks 50th anniversary at Pantages
LATimes - over 1 year
Perhaps it’s relatively easy to put on a show as thoroughly engaging, and emotionally and spiritually rich, as the one Yusuf, the former Cat Stevens, pulled off Thursday at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood. Just write a couple of dozen eminently catchy pop songs and combine them with a life story...
Article Link:
 LATimes article
I'm With Stupid: The Auditory Purgatory Of America, Chicago And Bread
Huffington Post - over 1 year
I've always considered myself a bit of a music nerd, and as I may have mentioned before, I have what I call a phonographic memory -- meaning I can remember the words to every song I've ever heard but somehow I won't remember your name the first six times I'm reintroduced to you. In some ways, it's great. For instance, I like to sing along with the radio when I'm driving, so it's nice not to fumble over the lyrics and look like an idiot when other people are in the car with me. In other ways, though, it can be a pain in the ass, and I was reminded of that recently when I started working an almost full-time job in an office near my home. How near? The other day, I got on my bike and got a good push out of my driveway and coasted to work without pedaling once. Honestly. But that's not the point. The point is, the office, which we share with a couple of other small businesses, has music playing over the in-ceiling speakers in the hallways all the time. No big deal, right? It ev...
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 Huffington Post article
Yusuf to Play Shows in New York on ‘A Cat’s Attic’ Tour
NYTimes - over 1 year
The singer-songwriter best known as Cat Stevens is playing what his representatives call his first public concerts in New York in four decades.
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 NYTimes article
'Alliance of Virtue (or Get Your Bags Together)'
Huffington Post - about 2 years
As we settle down into the grip of another New Year, the past slips further away into obscurity and I am soberly having to grapple with the fact that many youngsters' ears have never even heard the Beatles song, "Yesterday." It's an ominous sign of age creeping up and tapping you on the shoulder like a policeman halting you for driving too fast, dangling a rusty bucket in hand and reminding you of your own inescapable mortality. If that's the case, how much hope can we bank on to imagine they would know that there once really was a guy called Cat Stevens who dreamed of transporting his generation to a better world with a song called "Peace Train"? The chance of these young'uns ever hearing anything more about this old "Cat" becomes even more remote when you realize that he decided to embrace Islam and become a Muslim in 1977, almost 40 years ago, when none of these kids (and some of their parents) were even born. The next major ponderable impossibility would be for them -- as...
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 Huffington Post article
The Top 100 Most Punny and Funny Cat Names
Huffington Post - about 2 years
This article was originally published on Cat Names City Cats are the heart and soul of internet humor and you might be forgiven for thinking that the internet was created primarily as a place to share funny pictures of cats. Whether you are just looking for a laugh or searching for funny cat names for a newly adopted kitten, this list of 100 punny and funny cat names is sure to put a smile on your face and help you to find the perfect goofy name for your lovable feline. Cats give us so much joy and laughter so why not select funny cat names which will capture the personality of our kitten? Here are 100 wacky, geeky, bizarre, unique, silly, punny and hilarious names for funny felines. Funny Female Cat Names 1. Ali Cat 2. Ali McClaw 3. Angelicat 4. Cat Benatar 5. Catalie Portman 6. Catsy Cline 7. Chairwoman Miao 8. Cindy Clawford 9. Clawdia 10. Demi Meower 11. Empress 12. Fleas Witherspoon 13. Halley Purry 14. Hello Kitty 15. Isab...
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 Huffington Post article
Boys In/Songs From The Trees: Carly Simon Shares Secrets, Plus Chapell, Cameron Dezen Hammon, Daiana Solange Segovia, Nick Urb and Marcus King Exclusives
Huffington Post - about 2 years
CARLY SIMON RELEASES AUTOBIOGRAPHY & COMPANION ANTHOLOGY On the title track of her classic album No Secrets, Carly Simon sings, “Sometimes I wish that I never knew some of those secrets of yours.” With the release of her autobiography Boys In The Trees: A Memoir, Simon surrenders so many secrets that one might find him or herself reiterating that same sentiment. But most everyone will be enthralled by the frankness and often salacious recollections shared in Boys In The Trees with its reams of prose and cons. For those still not satiated, there is also a musical companion piece, the double-disc Songs From The Trees anthology, that offers two previously unreleased songs, making this a particularly memorable season of giving from Carly Simon to her fans and beyond. Simon's 384-pager Boys In The Trees—as in “let the boys grow in the trees,” lyric and title taken from her 7th solo album—overflows with information and never slows down. Early on, it introduces us to parents Rich...
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 Huffington Post article
Daily Meditation: On The Road
Huffington Post - over 2 years
We all need help maintaining our personal spiritual practice. We hope that these Daily Meditations, prayers and mindful awareness exercises can be part of bringing spirituality alive in your life. Today's post features a song by folk musician Yusuf Islam, formerly known at Cat Stevens. "Miles From Nowhere" invokes the weariness of a long journey, while reminding us that freedom is the ultimate destination. Miles From Nowhere by Cat Stevens Miles from nowhere I guess I'll take my time Oh yeah, to reach there Look up at the mountain I have to climb Oh yeah, to reach there. Lord my body has been a good friend But I won't need it when I reach the end Miles from nowhere Guess I'll take my time Oh yeah, to reach there I creep through the valleys And I grope through the woods 'cause I know when I find it my honey It's gonna make me feel good I love everything So don't it make you feel sad 'cause I'll drink to you, my baby I'll think to that, I'll think to t...
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 Huffington Post article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Cat Stevens
    LATE ADULTHOOD
  • 2016
    Age 67
    His second North American tour since his resurgence, featuring 12 shows in intimate venues, began on 12 September 2016.
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    On 9 August 2016, Yusuf announced "A Cat's Attic Tour", his second North American tour since 1978, beginning on 12 September at the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts in Toronto and ending at the Pantages Theatre in Los Angeles.
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    On 26 July 2016, Yusuf announced he would be part of the Global Citizen Festival held on 24 September 2016 in Central Park, New York, New York.
    He performed the song live for the first time in a special charity concert, his first show in more than a year, on 14 June 2016 at the Westminster Central Hall in London.
    On 1 June 2016, Yusuf shared a new song called "He Was Alone" and its corresponding video.
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  • 2015
    Age 66
    Yusuf performed two shows in early 2015: on 27 February at the Viña del Mar Festival, Quinta Vergara, Viña del Mar, Chile and on 22 April at the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff Bay, area of Cardiff, Wales, UK.
  • 2014
    Age 65
    On 4 December 2014, he played to his first public US audience since the 1970s at the Tower Theater in Philadelphia.
    On 15 September 2014, Yusuf announced the forthcoming release on 27 October 2014 of his new studio album, Tell 'Em I'm Gone, and two short tours: a November 2014 (9-date) Europe tour and a December 2014 (6-date) North America tour, the latter being his first one since 1976.
    He was selected and was inducted by Art Garfunkel in April 2014 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, where he performed "Father and Son", "Wild World", and "Peace Train".
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  • 2013
    Age 64
    In October 2013, Yusuf was nominated for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for his work under the Cat Stevens name (this was his second nomination – the first being an unsuccessful nomination in 2005).
  • 2012
    Age 63
    In May 2012, Moonshadow, a new musical featuring music from throughout his career opened at the Princess Theatre in Melbourne, Australia.
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  • 2011
    Age 62
    On 1 April 2011, he launched a new tour website (yusufinconcert.com) to commemorate his first European tour in over 36 years scheduled from 7 May to 2 June 2011.
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    On 2 March 2011, Yusuf released his latest song, "My People", as a free download available through his official website, as well as numerous other online outlets.
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  • 2010
    Age 61
    On 30 October 2010 Yusuf appeared at Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert's spoof Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear in Washington, DC, singing alongside Ozzy Osbourne.
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    In June 2010 he toured Australia for the first time in 36 years, and New Zealand for the first time ever.
  • 2009
    Age 60
    In November and December 2009, Yusuf undertook his "Guess I'll Take My Time Tour" which also showcased his musical play Moonshadow.
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    He appeared in May 2009 at Island Records' 50th Anniversary concert in London.
    A world tour was announced on his web site to promote the new album. He was scheduled to perform at an invitation-only concert at New York City's Highline Ballroom on 3 May 2009 and to go on to Los Angeles, Chicago and Toronto, as well as some to-be-announced European venues.
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    He appeared on The Chris Isaak Hour on the A&E network in April 2009, performing live versions of his new songs, "World O'Darkness", "Boots and Sand", and "Roadsinger".
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    On 5 May 2009, Yusuf released Roadsinger, a new pop album recorded in 2008. The lead track, "Thinking 'Bout You", received its debut radio play on a BBC programme on 23 March 2009.
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    In January 2009, Yusuf released a single in aid of children in Gaza, a rendition of the George Harrison song, "The Day the World Gets Round", along with the German bassist Klaus Voorman, who had formerly collaborated with The Beatles.
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  • FIFTIES
  • 2008
    Age 59
    In 2008 Yusuf contributed the song "Edge of Existence" to the charity album Songs for Survival, in support of the indigenous rights organisation Survival International.
  • 2007
    Age 58
    He performed at the Peace One Day concert at the Royal Albert Hall on 21 September 2007.
    In July 2007, he performed at a concert in Bochum, Germany, in benefit of Archbishop Desmond Tutu's Peace Centre in South Africa and the Milagro Foundation of Deborah and Carlos Santana.
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    In April 2007, BBC1 broadcast a concert given at the Porchester Hall by Islam as part of BBC Sessions, his first live performance in London in 28 years (the previous one being the UNICEF "Year of the Child" concert in 1979).
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    The allegations first surfaced in the German newspaper BZ after Yusuf's trip to Berlin in March 2007 to collect the Echo music award for "life achievements as musician and ambassador between cultures".
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    Muhammad's professional name is Yoriyos and his debut album was released in February 2007.
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  • 2006
    Age 57
    On CBS Sunday Morning in December 2006, he said, "You know, the cup is there to be filled... with whatever you want to fill it with.
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    Also in November 2006, Billboard magazine was curious as to why the artist is credited as just his first name, "Yusuf" rather than "Yusuf Islam".
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    Yusuf actively promoted this album, appearing on radio, television and in print interviews. In November 2006, he told the BBC, "It's me, so it's going to sound like that of course...
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    The album, An Other Cup, was released internationally in November 2006 on his own label, Ya Records (distributed by Polydor Records in the UK, and internationally by Atlantic Records)—the 40th anniversary of his first album, Matthew and Son.
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    In March 2006, Yusuf finished recording his first all-new pop album since 1978.
    In December 2006, Yusuf was one of the artists who performed at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Oslo, Norway, in honour of the prize winners, Muhammad Yunus and Grameen Bank.
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    There are clips of him singing in the studio when he was recording An Other Cup as well as a few 2006 excerpts of him on guitar singing a few verses of Cat Stevens songs including "The Wind" and "On the Road to Find Out".
    This documentary film features rare audio and video clips from the late 1960s and 1970s, as well as an extensive interview with Yusuf, his brother David Gordon, several record executives, Bob Geldof, Dolly Parton, and others outlining his career as Cat Stevens, his conversion and emergence as Yusuf Islam, and his return to music in 2006.
    In May 2006, in anticipation of his forthcoming new pop album, the BBC1 programme Imagine aired a 49-minute documentary with Alan Yentob called Yusuf: The Artist formerly Known as Cat Stevens.
  • 2005
    Age 56
    In mid-2005, Yusuf played guitar for the Dolly Parton album, Those Were the Days, on her version of his "Where Do the Children Play?" (Parton had also covered "Peace Train" a few years earlier.)
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    On 28 May 2005, Yusuf delivered a keynote speech and performed at the Adopt-A-Minefield Gala in Düsseldorf.
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    In early 2005, Yusuf released a new song, titled "Indian Ocean", about the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami disaster.
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    In a 2005 press release, he explained his revived recording career:
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    On 21 April 2005 Yusuf gave a short talk before a scheduled musical performance in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, on the anniversary of the prophet Muhammad's birthday.
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  • 2004
    Age 55
    In December 2004, he and Ronan Keating released a new version of "Father and Son": the song entered the charts at number two, behind Band Aid 20's "Do They Know It's Christmas?
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    The harm done is often difficult to repair", and added that he intended to donate the financial award given to him by the court to help orphans of the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami.
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    In October 2004 the News UK newspapers The Sun and The Sunday Times voiced their support for Yusuf's exclusion from the United States and claimed that he had supported terrorism.
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    Yusuf wrote a song about his 2004 exclusion from the US, titled "Boots and Sand", recorded in 2008 and featuring Paul McCartney, Dolly Parton, and Terry Sylvester.
    Yusuf believed his inclusion on a "watch list" may have simply been an error: a mistaken identification of him for a man with the same name, but different spelling. On 1 October 2004 he requested the removal of his name, "I remain bewildered by the decision of the US authorities to refuse me entry to the United States".
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    On 21 September 2004, Yusuf was on a United Airlines flight from London to Washington, travelling to a meeting with US entertainer Dolly Parton, who had recorded "Peace Train" several years earlier and was planning to include another Cat Stevens song on an upcoming album.
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  • 2001
    Age 52
    He appeared on videotape on a VH1 pre-show for the October 2001 Concert for New York City, condemning the attacks and singing his song "Peace Train" for the first time in public in more than 20 years, as an a cappella version.
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  • 2000
    Age 51
    The following day, he was denied entry and flown back to the United Kingdom. A spokesman for Homeland Security claimed there were "concerns of ties he may have to potential terrorist-related activities". The Israeli government had deported Yusuf in 2000 over allegations that he provided funding to the Palestinian organisation Hamas, but he denied doing so knowingly.
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  • FORTIES
  • 1997
    Age 48
    After Yusuf's friend, Irfan Ljubijankić, the Foreign Minister of Bosnia and Herzegovina, was killed by a Serbian rocket attack, Yusuf appeared at a 1997 benefit concert in Sarajevo and recorded a benefit album named after a song written by Ljubijankić, I Have No Cannons That Roar.
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  • 1989
    Age 40
    Yusuf attracted controversy in 1989, during an address to students at London's Kingston University, where he was asked about the fatwa calling for the murder of Salman Rushdie, author of the novel The Satanic Verses.
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    He was embroiled in a long-running controversy regarding comments he made in 1989 about the death fatwa on author Salman Rushdie.
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  • THIRTIES
  • 1985
    Age 36
    He served as chairman of the charity Muslim Aid from 1985 to 1993.
  • 1983
    Age 34
    In 1983, he founded the Islamia Primary School in Brondesbury Park, later moved to Salusbury Road, in the north London area of Queen's Park and, soon after, founded several Muslim secondary schools; in 1992, he set up The Association of Muslim Schools (AMS-UK), a charity that brought together all the Muslim schools in the UK.
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  • 1979
    Age 30
    Appearing with his hair freshly shorn and an untrimmed beard, he headlined a charity concert on 22 November 1979 in Wembley Stadium to benefit UNICEF's International Year of the Child.
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    After a brief engagement to Louise Wightman, Yusuf married Fauzia Mubarak Ali on 7 September 1979, at Regent's Park Mosque in London.
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  • TWENTIES
  • 1977
    Age 28
    Stevens formally converted to the Islamic religion on 23 December 1977, taking the name Yusuf Islam in 1978.
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    In April 1977, his Izitso album updated his pop rock and folk rock style with the extensive use of synthesisers, giving it a more synthpop style. "Was Dog a Doughnut" in particular was an early techno-pop fusion track and a precursor to the 1980s electro music genre, making early use of a music sequencer.
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  • 1976
    Age 27
    In 1976 Stevens nearly drowned off the coast of Malibu, California, United States, and said he shouted: "Oh, God!
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  • 1973
    Age 24
    In November 1973 he performed side two of the album at the Aquarius Theater in Hollywood, with a pre-arranged uninterrupted quadraphonic simulcast on the ABC network.
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    In 1973, Stevens moved to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, as a tax exile from the United Kingdom, however, he later donated the money to UNESCO.
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  • 1971
    Age 22
    For seven months from 1971 to 1972 Stevens was romantically linked to popular singer Carly Simon while both were produced by Samwell-Smith.
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  • 1970
    Age 21
    Subsequent releases in the 1970s also did well on the charts and in ongoing sales, although they did not touch the success he had from 1970 to 1973.
    In July 1970, Stevens recorded one of his songs, "But I Might Die Tonight", for the Jerzy Skolimowski film, Deep End.
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  • 1969
    Age 20
    Stevens contracted tuberculosis in 1969 and was close to death at the time of his admittance to the King Edward VII Hospital, Midhurst, West Sussex.
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  • TEENAGE
  • 1967
    Age 18
    His December 1967 album New Masters failed to chart in the United Kingdom.
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    In August 1967, he went on the air with other recording artists who had benefited from the station to mourn its closure.
    Yusuf Islam (born Steven Demetre Georgiou), commonly known by his former stage name Cat Stevens, is a British singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, humanitarian, and education philanthropist. His 1967 debut album reached the top 10 in the UK, and the album's title song "Matthew and Son" charted at number 2 on the UK Singles Chart.
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  • 1966
    Age 17
    In 1966, at age 18, he impressed manager/producer Mike Hurst, formerly of British vocal group the Springfields, with his songs and Hurst arranged for him to record a demo and then helped him get a record deal.
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  • 1965
    Age 16
    In 1965 he signed a publishing deal with Ardmore & Beechwood and recorded several demos, including "The First Cut Is the Deepest".
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    Though he enjoyed art (his later record albums would feature his original artwork on his album covers), he wanted to establish a musical career and began to perform originally under the stage name "Steve Adams" in 1965 while at Hammersmith.
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  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1948
    Born
    Born on July 21, 1948.
Original Authors of this text are noted here.
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