Yusuf Islam to release pop album in November


English musician Yusuf Islam, formerly known as Cat Stevens, is eyeing a November U.S. release date for his first album of pop music in 28 years.

“An Other Cup,” recorded on Islam’s own Ya imprint, will be released by Atlantic Records; internationally, the set will be released by Polydor.

Produced by Rick Nowells (Dido, Madonna), the set features contributions from former sidekicks guitarist Alun Davies and keyboardist Jean Roussel, as well as from Senegalese vocalist Youssou N’Dour, who is famed for his work with Peter Gabriel. Islam played guitar, piano and keyboard.

“An Other Cup” will include a cover of the Animals-popularized “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood” and “Heaven/Where True Love Goes,” which has been tapped as the first single.

Born Steven Georgiou in London in 1947, the artist scored hits as Cat Stevens with “Morning Has Broken,” “Lady D’Arbanville,” “Wild World,” “The First Cut is the Deepest” and “Moon Shadow.” He converted to Islam and changed his name in 1977, and two years later, retired from the music business.

In 1981, Islam began writing religious material, and he has released 10 albums of drum-and-vocal performances to date on his own U.K.-based label Mountain of Light. That material compiled on the recent album “Footsteps in the Light.” His first secular recording since 1977 came in early 2005 with a new self-penned song, “Indian Ocean.” Proceeds from the download-only track were donated to victims of the 2004 tsunami in the Indian Ocean.

Reuters/Billboard

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