‘These albums are a part of my history, my views of life and the lifestyle of my generation, so it is important that they are documented here in this book. I hope the messages of my songs will continue to be relevant, which they seem to be today.’ – Yusuf / Cat Stevens
On 24th April 1970, Cat Stevens released his pivotal album, Mona Bone Jakon. It was to be the first in a trio of albums, including Tea for the Tillerman and Teaser and the Firecat, that over the course of two years marked a momentous change in direction for Stevens. Iconic songs such as ‘Lady D’Arbanville’, ‘Where Do The Children Play?’, ‘Father and Son’, ‘Wild World’, ‘Peace Train’, ‘Morning Has Broken’ and ‘Moonshadow’ were all recorded at this time.
Celebrating the 50th anniversary of these three ground-breaking albums, Cat Stevens: Back Beyond is the official chronicle of the period featuring lyrics, photographs, illustrations, and the first-hand recollections of Yusuf / Cat Stevens.
'It has been a pleasure to work on this book. At its core, it's a celebration of three important albums that had a huge impact on who I am, both as a person and as a songwriter.' – Yusuf / Cat Stevens
'I was always quite conscious that whatever I laid down musically it would be something that lasts. It was also the recording of my own life and of what I was going through at the time.' - Yusuf / Cat Stevens
In 1970, Cat Stevens returned to the music scene debuting his new catalogue of songs at the 10th National Jazz, Blues & Pop Music Festival in Plumpton. Tours of the US soon followed - featuring stripped-back, acoustic performances at venues such as the Fillmore East and the Troubadour - as Cat Stevens quickly captured the hearts of critical listeners, who latched on to the stories and expressions of self-discovery reflected in his lyrics.
Chronicling this period in Cat Stevens: Back Beyond, the singer-songwriter's lyrics, recollections, and drawings are published alongside the work of some of the world's most famous photographers: from David Bailey and Annie Leibovitz to Brian Aris and Barrie Wentzell, David Wedgbury, Joe Sia, Jeffrey Mayer, Gered Mankowitz, Michael Putland, and many more.
'My songs serve as memory banks and I'm grateful for them. Without them, I wouldn't be here. My life is one endless song.' - Yusuf / Cat StevensIn 1968, Cat Stevens' pop music career was cut short by a near-death illness followed by an extended period of convalescence. A new perspective on life emerged, offering the impetus to write, produce and release music free from the pressures of the music business and popular sounds of the time. These highly personal songs became a vehicle for his spiritual journey, born out of a new understanding of his own identity.
Cat Stevens: Back Beyond is published in a limited edition of only 1,500 numbered copies worldwide, each signed by Yusuf / Cat Stevens.Quarter-bound in black cloth and vegan leather, with gold leaf blocking and gilded page edging, the book is presented in a slipcase within a felt bag. The large-format volume (245 x 310mm | 9 ½" x 12 ½") is printed on heavyweight 200gsm paper. The cover includes inset artwork inspired by an 1880's engraving commonly known as 'The Flammarion Engraving' by Yusuf/Cat Stevens. Each copy in the limited edition is hand-numbered and individually signed by the author, Yusuf/Cat Stevens.
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Cat Stevens: Back Beyond is the official chronicle of the two-year period in which Cat Stevens released his trio of groundbreaking albums: Mona Bone Jakon, Tea for the Tillerman, and Teaser and the Firecat. Featuring lyrics, photographs, illustrations, and the first-hand recollections of Yusuf / Cat Stevens.
Since 1974 Genesis has created signed limited edition books on behalf of authors and artists ranging from the Beatles to Buckingham Palace.
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