Cat Stevens Returning to US Stage After 28 Years

cat-stevens-620x400Known for being a mega artist during the 1970s with songs like Moonshadow, Morning has Broken, Peace Train, and Wild World, Cat Stevens stopped performing in the US in 1976, a time when he converted to Islam and placed his music career on hold.

Stevens is now set to perform on stage again with six scheduled visits to North American cities starting in December 2014. In addition, Stevens has a new blues album set to be released on October 27, entitled “Tell ‘Em I’m Gone”. While the music is expected to be just as magical as it was decades ago, Stevens will now go by his converted name, Yusaf.

In a telephone interview from Dubai where Stevens lives the majority of time, he states that he has been a little bit slow in coming around to the United States but with so many people eager to hear and see him perform again, he feels obliged.

Known as the “Peace Train…Late Again” tour, a reference to his slow redeveloping music career, the first stop will be in Toronto Canada on December 1 and from there, Stevens will travel to Boston, New York, Chicago, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.

He says he feels guilty that he is not doing as much as fans want by not performing because so many people on Facebook make comments or provide feedback. However, at age 66, he moves in life at his own speed.

In the spring of 2013, Stevens was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Brooklyn, New York. Even though he has been a popular star for a very long time, he admits there is a lot of hesitation about getting back into the business.

Stevens ran away from something a long time ago, but emphasizes that the music business is very different from making music. He said he had to answer some of his own questions regarding the music business, specifically where he should be in life. In the 1970s, he had a lot to say, which is why he was so creative in his song writing.

Stevens also commented that he did not feel his Islamic faith would be an issue while touring in North America, despite the United States and other countries fighting Islamic State militants in the Middle East. He feels that what many people believe about Islam is completely different from the religion and that he was fortunate to have had the opportunity to learn about Islam prior to it becoming a political headline.

Editor of the concert industry trade publication Pollstar, Gary Bongiovanni, said that he did not anticipate any problems with the tour although had Stevens spoke in favor of the Islamic State, things would be different. Instead, it appears this will be a modest tour whereby Stevens has the chance to “test the waters” and because he will be performing many of the old favorites, people should be very receptive.

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