10 January 2020

It's Friday. It's raining but very (much too) mild. It was still dark as I watched my GP this morning signing the certificate which condemns me to stay home for the next ten days. After days of aching joints and sore muscles and a bit of a fever, we agreed that, while it's all guess work, maybe matters could improve earlier. After that I went home and straight to bed and fell asleep listening to excellent podcasts.
I woke up when the rain started to really hammer down and R came inside, cursing that his pruning plans had to be postponed.

Music day it is (thank you to Robin for the idea) and my letter C stands for Cat Stevens, for some time my teenage heartthrob no. 1.

There was a time I could sing along to any of his songs and I am not embarrassed to admit that. I watched Harold & Maude three times in a row one summer, 1975 or 1976. By the third time, I and everyone else sang along to I think I see the light.
Plus, I actually and completely coincidentally met him in person on one of the occasions he spoke about his conversion to the muslim faith. This happened at an exhibition show in Holland Park, London, in June 1982, on the day before or after we got married. It was all esoteric stuff, the beginnings of the organic movement, and he had us sit on the floor and hold hands and think of how everything was connected. As I sat next to him, I felt that connection very deeply but possibly on another level (also, I was pregnant and experiencing my baby's first movements). He didn't sing, he was all done with it, he said.

He dropped from my life after that for no particular reason. He had only been a good looking guy with a lovely voice anyway and I was now a mother.

And then years later, I friend of a friend travelling to Washington was sat on a plane next to him or maybe in the same row, when he was denied entry to the US because of his faith or whatever fear mongering was top of the list so shortly after 9/11. Apparently, he was told this fact while the intercom played his Morning has broken. Totally coincidentally of course.


  1. His music definitely had a place in my heart and my world.

  2. I was at a concert (also sitting on the floor with my children, at his feet) in Tampa FL in the early 70s...and also loved his music. He sat on a stool and played guitar and just had a standing mike...and there were only a few hundred people there...not a big production even.

  3. I used to be able to sing along to Cat Stevens too. I missed him when he stopped singing, but love when a person fearlessly pursues what they perceive to be their path (so long as it hurts no one of course). Thanks for taking me down memory lane this morning.

  4. my heartthrob along those lines was Donovan and I lucked into front row seats the one time I got to see him in concert. went to the ticket place downtown the afternoon of the show and the guy was on the phone. he hung up and told me they had just released two front row tickets, did I want them. front row was actually second row as the actual front row was friends and roadies I guess.

    personally I think it's sad that he stopped singing after his conversion. what kind of faith silences a voice and song?

    1. He has been singing and touring for a while but under a different name, Yusuf Islam/Cat Stevens. He still sings his old stuff but with less vitality. And he has recorded at least four albums of new songs under that name. But not the same spark.

  5. So lovely to be reminded of Cat Stevens. His music was definitely a part of my life in late '60s and early '70s. Also loved Harold and Maude.

  6. Beautiful song.

    I must admit I am a little on the late side for him. I, of course, knew of his big hits that still get played on occasion but that was about it. Maybe time to take a look.

  7. I love his music, his voice and his face. He was and still is a gorgeous man. He almost died of TB and then almost drowned. These two brushes with death led him down the path of religion.

  8. I always loved Cat Stevens' music. Still do. I'm intrigued by your commenter above who was at a concert in Tampa in the early '70s -- which is where I was living at that time. Funny! I love "Harold and Maude," too -- one of my favorite movies for years and years, largely because of his music but also because of the wonderful Ruth Gordon.

  9. Ah, Cat Stevens. I still love his music.