Cat Stevens

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Cat Stevens

Biography

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. Stevens' 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. His albums Tea for the Tillerman (1970) and Teaser and the Firecat (1971) were both certified triple platinum in the US by the RIAA. His 1972 album Catch Bull at Four spent three weeks at number one on the Billboard 200, and fifteen weeks at number one in the Australian ARIA Charts. He earned two ASCAP songwriting awards in 2005 and 2006 for "The First Cut Is the Deepest"; the song has been a hit for four different artists. His other hit songs include "Father and Son", "Wild World", "Peace Train", "Moonshadow", and "Morning Has Broken". In 2007 he received the British Academy's Ivor Novello Award for Outstanding Song Collection.

In December 1977, Stevens converted to Islam and adopted the name Yusuf Islam the following year. In 1979, he auctioned all his guitars for charity and left his music career to devote himself to educational and philanthropic causes in the Muslim community. He was embroiled in a long-running controversy regarding comments he made in 1989 about the death fatwa on author Salman Rushdie. He has received several awards for his work in promoting peace in the world, including the 2003 World Award, the 2004 Man of Peace Award, the 2007 Mediterranean Prize for Peace, and two honorary doctorate degrees for services to education and humanitarian relief from universities in the UK. Known professionally by the single name Yusuf, in 2006 he returned to pop music with his first album of new pop songs in 28 years, titled An Other Cup. In 2009, he released the album Roadsinger. In 2014, he released the album Tell 'Em I'm Gone, and began his first US tour since 1978. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2014.

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