Yusuf Islam embarks on his first tour in 33 years

Musician and song-writer Yusuf Islam, formerly known as Cat Stevens, is going on tour again after a 33-year break. After converting to Islam in 1977, he stopped performing altogether, and only resumed his musical career around 2001. He slightly changed his position on the permissibility of music in Islam, and from then on performed music that he considers halal, using only particular instruments and placing a strong emphasis on the spiritual or philosophical lyrics.

He opened his comeback on stage with a concert in Dublin, which saw a sold-out arena and enthusiastic fans, but also some angry reactions. A small group within the audience marred the show by booing and some abusive comments. In a reaction statement in The Times, Yusuf Islam said he was shocked and these people should not expect him “to return to the Cat Stevens persona of yesterday”, but also that he is glad to be back.