BRITISH singer-songwriting legend and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Yusuf (better known as Cat Stevens) will tour South Africa for the first time in November.
The Peace Train Tour commemorates the 50th Anniversary of his first major hit single and debut album Matthew & Son released in 1967.
Concerts will be held on Thursday, November 9 at GrandWest, Cape Town, the Sun Arena at Time Square, Menlyn Maine, on Sunday, November 12 and at Durban’s ICC Arena on Wednesday, November 15. Tickets go on sale at Computicket on Thursday, July 27 at 9am.
Stevens will sing his hits Wild World, Moonshadow, Father and Son and Peace Train and the much-loved Morning Has Broken, as well as songs from his new album.
His long-time association with this country began in the early 70s, when the global hit, Can’t Keep It In, held the number one spot on the South African national hit parade for six weeks in 1972.
In 2001/2002 Stevens added African harmonies and traditional sounds to two of his major hits, Wild World (Bana, Bana) and Peace Train which he recorded with a local choir, the Incwenga Voices.
He also performed Peace Train with this choir at the Market Theatre in Johannesburg as part of the broadcast via satellite to a Stop the War Coalition event in London that also featured Cold Play and Ronan Keating.
In November 2003, he returned to SA to perform Wild World but this time with his former session player, Peter Gabriel as part of the Nelson Mandela’s 46664 concert line-up in Cape Town.
Having first found fame as a teenager in 1960s England, Stevens grew from being a teen idol into becoming one of the most influential singer-songwriters of all time.
He achieved early success with Matthew and Son, Here Comes My Baby and The First Cut Is The Deepest. Then, from 1970 to 1978, he recorded and released the albums that would establish him as a leading singer-songwriter of his generation.
Tea for the Tillerman, from 1970, went multi-platinum in the United States and Australia with such songs as Wild World, Hard Headed Woman, Where Do the Children Play? and Father & Son. But it was Teaser and the Firecat in 1971 that made him a megastar, with songs like Morning Has Broken, Peace Train and Moonshadow – spending fifteen weeks at the top of the Australian charts, becoming the biggest-selling album of the country in 1972.
In 2006 he returned to mainstream music with the album An Other Cup, which was followed in 2009 by Roadsinger and Tell ‘Em I’m Gone in 2014 – the same year he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
He is currently working on a children’s animation series and writing his autobiography, which is expected to surface next year.
Ticket prices start at R450 and can be booked at Computicket.