Broadcast and Webcast Exclusive:
First Live US Performance in Three Decades by Yusuf (formerly Cat Stevens)
Will Air on KCRWs Morning Becomes Eclectic
On Thursday, December 21, 2006, at 11:15 am, Music
Director Nic Harcourt, host of the
influential music program Morning
Becomes Eclectic on trendsetting public radio station 89.9FM KCRW/Santa Monica and KCRW.com,
presents a broadcast and webcast exclusive: the first live US performance in nearly three decades by singer/songwriter Yusuf, formerly known as Cat
In November 2006, Ya/Atlantic released AN OTHER CUP, Yusuf’s long-anticipated new album, the first collection of modern pop songs in 28 years from this legendary British singer/songwriter. It was received with a flurry of critical acclaim and coincided with the 40th anniversary of Cat Stevens’ first hit record, “I Love My Dog.”
The performance that will air on Morning Becomes Eclectic was recorded on December 19 at an invitation-only event in an intimate performance venue in New York City, hosted by KCRWs Nic Harcourt. The performance and interview will be broadcast on air and will be simulcast online at www.KCRW.com on Thurs., Dec. 21, at 11:15 am Pacific time; click on KCRWLive to listen to the station’s on-air stream. Yusuf’s performance will be available for later listening in the KCRW Archives online.
Nic Harcourt says, “We've been working on making this happen for almost two years since Yusuf released his ‘Indian Ocean’ single for victims of the 2004 Tsunami and began recording ‘An Other Cup.’ We had a lot of people helping us on this including Travis front man Fran Healey, and all of our friends at Atlantic records. I'm honored that Yusuf said yes to a performance on KCRW.”
Born and raised in London, Cat Stevens became a British pop star in the mid-1960s, while also writing hits for other artists, including “Here Comes My Baby” and “First Cut Is The Deepest.” In 1968, his blossoming career was suddenly derailed when he contracted tuberculosis. He spent a year recovering from his illness and when he returned to recording, it was with new introspection and sensitivity.
Stevens reemerged in 1970, and the following year he made
his U.S. chart debut with the acclaimed TEA FOR THE TILLERMAN. Over the next
seven years, he had seven top ten albums, including such classics as TEASER AND
THE FIRECAT, CATCH BULL AT FOUR, and BUDDAH AND THE CHOCOLATE BOX. Having
reinvented his music, he wrote and performed such personal and reflective songs
as “Wild World,” “Father And Son,” “Peace
Train,” “Moonshadow” “Morning Has Broken,”
“Oh Very Young,” and many others. His music was also featured
in the 1971 cult film classic, "Harold and Maude." Truly a global
superstar, Stevens became one of the most important figures in the folk-rock
movement of the decade.
In the midst of his multi-platinum career, Stevens nearly drowned in the Pacific Ocean off Malibu and experienced a spiritual turning point. Having received a copy of the Koran from his brother, he was inspired to remake his life. Converting to Islam in 1978, he left the music world entirely, changed his name, and devoted his life to charitable and educational work.
Yusuf founded three Muslim schools in London, and his pioneering work resulted in a landmark decision by the British government to certify and support Islamic education throughout the country. His U.N. registered charity, Small Kindness, provides humanitarian relief to orphans and families in Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq, and other regions. He is also one of the few individuals to finance women to attend university in Baghdad. Yusuf has received a series of awards for his life's work, including the 2004 Man for Peace, presented by a committee of all Nobel peace laureates.
The enduring music of Cat Stevens is actively sought out today, and his albums sell over 1.5 million copies a year. He was recently named ASCAP's Songwriter of the Year for the second consecutive year and was recognized for his enduring classic “First Cut Is The Deepest.” The song, which first appeared on 1967’s NEW MASTERS, has been covered by numerous artists including Rod Stewart and Sheryl Crow, who earned a 2005 Grammy Award nomination for her rendition.
Click on KCRWs 24/7 Internet radio station, KCRWMusic.com every weekday to hear web-exclusive editions of Morning Becomes Eclectic with Nic Harcourt, New Ground with Chris Douridas, Cafe LA with Tom Schnabel and Metropolis with Jason Bentley; and on Saturdays and Sundays for The A-Track with Anne Litt, Chocolate City with Garth Trinidad, Nocturna with Raul Campos, and Pop Secret with Cathy Tamkin.