It was 1972.  My friend Lisa was in love with Jim Croce, and I was in love with Cat Stevens.


Our crushes were partly based on the fact that we lived in Missouri, surrounded by Scots-Irish-Anglo blond boys – and the exotic swarthy hirsute looks of our Greek and Italian crushes were very hot.

When Jim died in a plane crash in 1973 Lisa and I cried in shock together.  I had survivor guilt.  Lisa turned to Gilbert & Sullivan, who were already dead and couldn’t desert her.


One of my first printed T-shirts was bought in LA and featured Cat’s face.  (Believe it or not, children, there was a time in America when most T-shirts were solid or striped.  I was very excited to find my idol on baby blue cotton.)

Check out Cat’s classic Morning Has Broken, and don’t miss the enormous Afro on the keyboardist.  Read some of the comments too – this song clearly strikes an emotional chord with many people.  In fact, I’m spearheading a campaign in our family to have it sung at weddings, christenings, and funerals from now on – a signature family song, along with Be Thou My Vision (old Irish hymn, great recording by Van Morrison).

Cat went through a long drop-out period involving nearly drowning in the Pacific near Malibu, promising his life to God if he lived, turning to Islam, giving his guitars to charity, and funding Islamic schools in Britain.  The current Newsweek reports that ”he’s emerging from his moon shadow.” I’m as giddy as a schoolgirl!

Read it here:  And the Cat came back

Share and Enjoy:
  • Digg
  • email
  • Facebook
  • Twitter