Yusuf Islam, formerly known as pop singer Cat Stevens, is set to release his first commercial album nearly three decades after he reverted to Islam and withdrew from the pop world, dismissing criticism that returning to the music industry is a betrayal of his Muslim faith.
“It’s me, so it’s going to sound like that of course … This is the real thing,” Islam was quoted as saying on October1.
“When my son brought the guitar back into the house, you know, that was the turning point. It opened a flood of new ideas and music which I think a lot of people would connect with.”
The first single from the new album An Other Cup will be released in Britain at the start of November, while the album will be launched later in the month to mark the 40th anniversary of the release of his first Cat Stevens album, Matthew and Son.
Islam initiated his comeback with a live performance in London on September 26 to an audience that includes former US president Bill Clinton, Virgin Group founder Sir Richard Branson as well as the famous acting couple, Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones.
Islam has never stopped making records over the last three decades, releasing three albums of Islam-related songs, The Life of the Last Prophet (1995), Prayers of the Last Prophet (1999) and a record for children, A Is for Allah (2000), most of them have been for humanitarian causes.
The father of five underlined that the real issue of music must be the message in the words of the song.
“As long as it conforms to moral norms and doesn’t divert a person from his or her duties in worshipping Allah Most High, then it has its place in the culture of Islam.”