Article Info

published: 11/28/10
updated: 12/16/13

Cat Stevens and Religion




Before converting to Islam on December 23, 1977, former pop singer Cat Stevens experimented with Buddhism, I Ching, tarot cards, and astrology. Yet it was when his brother gave him a Quran as a gift that Stevens became intrigued with Islam and began adjusting his life to its precepts. In an interview with Rolling Stone, he said,

"I had found the spiritual home I'd been seeking for most of my life. And if you listen to my music and lyrics, like "Peace Train" and "On The Road To Find Out", it clearly shows my yearning for direction and the spiritual path I was travelling."

Stevens identified with Joseph from the book of Genesis, who was sold by his brothers into slavery, because he felt like a material item in the music industry as opposed to a person. Upon his conversion he adopted the Muslim name Yusuf Islam; "Yusuf," means "Joseph." His last concert in that phase of his life was November 22, 1979 in Wembly Stadium, which was a benefit for children.

On September 7, 1979, Yusuf married Fauzia Mubarak Ali at a London mosque. They have five children together.