For Sunday: Cat Stevens sings “Peace Train” (1976)

cat-stevens--peace-train-is-coming-lee-brown


Cat Stevens has always been one of my favorite singer/composers. His first five albums were bliss. He became a little more hit-and-miss after that, but I still find something to listen to on every album.

Cat, born of Greek parentage in England, has been on a long journey: he was a Buddhist for a long time, then Baha’i, and now Muslim. He even changed his name to Yusuf Islam (though Cat Stevens wasn’t his real name either; he was born Steven Demetre Georgiou).

He has always been unapologetic about voicing his beliefs. He got into trouble some years ago for mixing himself up with the whole Salman Rushdie / fatwa thing.

But there has always been a freshness and purity in his music. And he is often strangely profound, and he is also often powerfully spiritual.

This song (in live performance in 1976) is all of the above: fresh, pure, profound, and spiritual. And I still find it powerfully moving.

Ev’rybody jump upon the peace train.


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About Loren Williams
Gay, partnered, living in Providence, working at a local university. Loves: books, movies, TV. Comments and recriminations can be sent to futureworld@cox.net.

2 Responses to For Sunday: Cat Stevens sings “Peace Train” (1976)

  1. starproms says:

    I love that one too. Thank you for the reminder. He’s a complex character, as you say. I personally wish he’d go back to being a buddhist!

    • I miss the Buddhist phase too. There was also a brief flirtation with Baha’I, but the music wasn’t great (I think that was the “Numbers” album). Loved “Catch Bull at Four” and “Buddha and the Chocolate Box.”

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