CAT STEVENS


"The First Cut is the Deepest" live 68


SHORT BIOGRAPHY:

Cat Stevens was born Steven Demetre Georgiou as the son of a Swedish mother and a Greek father in 1947.

He became interested in folk and rock music in his teens and in 1965 began performing under the name Steve Adams. Mike Hurst, a former member of the folk-pop group the Springfields, who had become a record producer, heard him and took him into a recording studio to cut his composition "I Love My Dog." This demo caused Decca Records to sign him under the name Cat Stevens and assign him to its newly formed Deram subsidiary. "I Love My Dog" reached the British charts in October 1966, peaking in the Top 40.

Stevens' next single, "Matthew & Son," entered the charts in January 1967 and just missed getting to number one. It was another self-written effort, and Stevens' reputation as a writer was further enhanced by the success of his song "Here Comes My Baby," which was recorded by the Tremeloes and entered the British charts in February, reaching the Top Five. Stevens' third single, "I'm Gonna Get Me a Gun," entered the British charts in March and reached the Top Ten, preceded by his debut album, Matthew & Son, also a Top Ten entry.

In May, P.P. Arnold got into the British charts with Stevens' composition "The First Cut Is the Deepest," peaking in the Top 20. Stevens' fourth single, "A Bad Night," was in the charts in August, peaking in the Top 20. That was a disappointment, considering his recent success, and his next records did even worse: "Kitty," his fifth single, barely made the charts in December, while "New Masters", his second album, didn't chart at all. Even worse, in March 1968, Stevens contracted tuberculosis and was hospitalized for three months. He spent a year recuperating. After the failure of an intended comeback single, "Where Are You," released in July 1969, he parted ways with Deram.

Stevens began writing more personal, introspective material and signed a new contract with Island Records. A third album, Mona Bone Jakon, came in April 1970. From the album, the single "Lady D'Arbanville" was issued in June 1970 and became his third Top Ten hit in the U.K. Stevens' talent as a songwriter for others had not deserted him; in August, Jimmy Cliff entered the British charts with his composition "Wild World," reaching the Top Ten. With a backlog of material, Stevens had a second Island album, Tea for the Tillerman, out in November; it made the U.K. Top 20. With that, Stevens suddenly became a major star in the U.S. Tea for the Tillerman reached the Top Ten and went gold; Mona Bone Jakon finally reached the charts. Stevens was hailed as one of the most important figures in the currently popular folk-rock singer/songwriter trend, along with James Taylor, Carole King, and others.

In June 1971, Stevens released a new single, "Moon Shadow," which made the Top 40 in the U.S. and the U.K. This was followed in September by "Peace Train," which hit the pop Top Five and reached number one in the easy listening charts in the U.S., just in advance of Stevens' fifth album, Teaser and the Firecat. An immediate gold-record seller, the LP just missed the top of the U.S. charts and hit the Top Five in the U.K. In addition to "Moon Shadow" and "Peace Train," it contained "Morning Has Broken," an adaptation of a hymn, which became Stevens' second consecutive easy listening number one and reached the pop Top Ten on both sides of the Atlantic.

Catch Bull at Four; a slightly harder-rocking effort, was released in October 1972 and represented Stevens' commercial peak: it hit number one in the U.S., earning gold-record status immediately. Different singles from the album were released in the two countries, in the U.S. "Sitting" and in the U.K. "Can't Keep It In"; both reached the Top 20.

By 1973, Stevens was again beginning to show signs of the strain of being a pop star, even if he didn't become physically ill. He released a new single, "The Hurt," which made the U.S. Top 40. It was followed in August by his seventh album, Foreigner, an ambitious effort that featured an entire LP side given over to a musical suite. The record was another massive commercial success, peaking inside the Top Five in the U.S. and U.K. and going gold instantly.

Stevens issued his eighth album, Buddha and the Chocolate Box, in March 1974, preceded by the single "Oh Very Young," a Top Ten hit. As usual, the album made the U.S. and U.K. Top Five and went gold upon release. In July, Stevens released an independent summer single, a revival of Sam Cooke's "Another Saturday Night," and it made the U.S. Top Ten and the U.K. Top 20. In November, A&M extracted "Ready" from Buddha and the Chocolate Box and released it as a single that made the Top 40. Stevens' Greatest Hits LP was released in June 1975 and predictably was a big success, eventually selling over three million copies in the U.S. alone. "Two Fine People," a new song featured on it, reached the American Top 40.

Stevens had his ninth regular album release, Numbers out in November, but this album only made the Top 20 in the U.S. Though it was certified gold within a couple of months, did not generate a Top 40 single, and missed the charts entirely in the U.K. Stevens took 18 months to deliver his tenth album, Izitso, in May 1977. It restored some of his commercial clout, hitting the U.S. Top Ten and being certified gold in a month, while reaching the U.K. Top 20, and the single "Old School Yard" made the Top 40 in America and charted in Great Britain.

In 1977, Stevens formally became a Muslim and adopted the name Yusuf Islam. Notwithstanding this change, there was an 11th and final Cat Stevens album, Back to Earth, released in December 1978; it sold modestly. With that, Yusuf Islam retired from the pop music business.
source: All Music Guide


Discography:

The Decca/Deram Years 1966-69


1. Matthew and Son - Dream 1967

Tracks:
1. Matthew & Son / 2. I Love My Dog / 3. Here Comes My Baby / 4. Bring Another Bottle Baby / 5. Portobello Road / 6. I've Found a Love / 7. I See a Road / 8. Baby Get Your Head Screwed On / 9. Granny / 10. When I Speak to the Flowers / 11. Tramp / 12. Come on and Dance / 13. Hummingbird / 14. Lady / 15. School Is Out / 16. I'm Gonna Get Me a Gun
Rating : 8


2. New Masters - Deram 1968

Tracks:
1. Kitty / 2. I'm So Sleepy / 3. Northern Wind / 4. Laughing Apple / 5. Smash Your Heart / 6. Moonstone / 7. First Cut Is the Deepest / 8. I'm Gonna Be King / 9. Ceylon City / 10. Blackness of the Night / 11. Come on Baby (Shift That Log) / 12. I Love Them All / 13. Image of Hell / 14. Lovely City / 15. View from the Top / 16. Here Comes My Wife / 17. It's a Super (Dupa) Life / 18. Where Are You / 19. Bad Night
Rating : 6


My Suggestion For a 80 minutes (app.) Best Of Compilation:


1. Here Comes My Baby ( Stevens ) Matthew and Son
2. The First Cut Is The Deepest ( Stevens ) New Masters
3. I Love My Dog ( Stevens ) Matthew and Son
4. Blackness Of The Night ( Stevens ) New Masters
5. I´ve Found a Love ( Stevens ) Matthew and Son
6. Baby Get Your Head Screwed On ( Stevens ) Matthew and Son
7. I´m So Sleepy ( Stevens ) New Masters
8. The Laughing Apple ( Stevens ) New Masters
9. Smash Your Heart ( Stevens ) New Masters
10. Matthew and Son ( Stevens ) Matthew and Son
11. Portobello Road ( Stevens/Fowley ) Matthew and Son
12. The Tramp ( Stevens ) Matthew and Son
13. Here Comes My Wife ( Stevens ) Single 1968
14. The View From The Top ( Stevens ) Matthew and Son

The Island Years 1970-78


1. Mona Bone Jakon - Island 1970

Tracks:
1. Lady d'Arbanville / 2. Maybe You're Right / 3. Pop Star / 4. I Think I See the Light / 5. Trouble / 6. Mona Bone Jakon / 7. I Wish, I Wish / 8. Katmandu / 9. Time / 10. Fill My Eyes / 11. Lilywhite
Rating : 7


2. Tea For The Tillerman - Island 1971

Tracks:
1. Where Do The Children Play? / 2. Hard Headed Woman / 3. Wild World / 4. Sad Lisa / 5. Miles From Nowhere / 6. But I Might Die Tonight / 7. Longer Boats / 8. Into White / 9. On The Road To Find Out / 10. Father And Son / 11. Tea For The Tillerman
Rating : 8


3. Teaser and The Firecat - Island 1971

Tracks:
1. The Wind / 2. Rubylove / 3. If I Laugh / 4. Changes IV / 5. How Can I Tell You / 6. Tuesday's Dead / 7. Morning Has Broken / 8. Bitterblue / 9. Moonshadow / 10. Peace Train
Rating : 9


4. Catch a Bull At Four - Island 1972

Tracks:
1. Sitting / 2. The Boy with a Moon & Star on His Head / 3. Angelsea / 4. Silent Sunlight / 5. Can't Keep It In / 6. 18th Avenue / 7. Freezing Steel / 8. O Caritas / 9. Sweet Scarlet / 10. Ruins
Rating : 5


5. Foreigner - Island 1973

Tracks:
1. Foreigner Suite / 2. The Hurt / 3. How Many Times / 4. Later / 5. 100 I Dream
Rating : 5


6. Buddha and The Chocolate Box - Island 1974

Tracks:
1. Music / 2. Oh Very Young / 3. Sun/C79 / 4. Ghost Town / 5. Jesus / 6. Ready / 7. King of Trees / 8. A Bad Penny / 9. Home in the Sky
Rating : 6


7. Numbers - Island 1975

Tracks:
1. Whistlestar / 2. Novim's Nightmare / 3. Majik of Majiks / 4. Drywood / 5. Banapple Gas / 6. Land O'Freelove & Goodbye / 7. Jzero / 8. Home / 9. Monad's Anthem
Rating : 4


8. Izitzo - Island 1977

Tracks:
1. (Remember the Days of the) Old Schoolyard / 2. Life / 3. Killin' Time / 4. Kypros / 5. Bonfire / 6. (I Never Wanted) To Be a Star / 7. Crazy / 8. Sweet Jamaica / 9. Was Dog a Doughnut? / 10. Child for a Day
Rating : 3


9. Back To Earth - Island 1978

Tracks:
1. Just Another Night / 2. Daytime / 3. Bad Brakes / 4. Randy / 5. The Artist / 6. Last Love Song / 7. Nascimento / 8. Father / 9. New York Times / 10. Never
Rating : 6

My Suggestion For a 80 minutes (app.) Best Of Compilation:


1. Moonshadow ( Stevens ) Teaser and The Firecat
2. Wild World ( Stevens ) Tea For The Tillerman
3. If I Laugh ( Stevens ) Teaser and The Firecat
4. Father and Son ( Stevens ) Tea For The Tillerman
5. The Wind ( Stevens ) Teaser and The Firecat
6. Morning Has Broken ( Stevens ) Teaser and The Firecat
7. Oh Very Young ( Stevens ) Buddha and The Chocolate Box
8. How Can I Tell You ( Stevens ) Teaser and The Firecat
9. Tuesday´s Dead ( Stevens ) Teaser and The Firecat
10. Lady D´Arbanville ( Stevens ) Mona Bone Jakon
11. Peace Train ( Stevens ) Teaser and The Firecat
12. Maybe You´re Right ( Stevens ) Mona Bone Jakon
13. Katmandu ( Stevens ) Mona Bone Jakon
14. Fill My Eyes ( Stevens ) Mona Bone Jakon
15. Sad Lisa ( Stevens ) Tea For The Tillerman
16. Bitterblue ( Stevens ) Teaser and The Firecat
17. Sitting ( Stevens ) Catch a Bull At Four
18. The Last Love Song ( Stevens ) Back To Earth
19. Never ( Stevens ) Back To Earth
20. Can´t Keep It In ( Stevens ) Catch a Bull At Four
21. Into White ( Stevens ) Tea For The Tillerman
22. The Hurt ( Stevens ) Foreigner
23. Where Do the Children Play ( Stevens ) Tea For The Tillerman

Essential Albums!

Original albums as listed and rated on “Rate Your Music” - July 17 - 2018

28 Tea For the Tillerman - 1970
55 Teaser and the Firecat - 1971
181 Mona Bone Jakon - 1970
425 Matthew and Son - 1967
436 Saturnight - 1974
440 Catch a Bull at Four - 1972
618 New Masters - 1967
898 Buddha and the Chocolate Box - 1974
933 Foreigner - 1973
997 Numbers - 1975
998 Back to Earth - 1978
999 Izitso - 1977
Check and Rate Here!

December 25 - "rateyourmusic.com"



LINKS:

Cat Stevens.Com

Cat Stevens - UK


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