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Cat Stevens

Data di nascita: 21. Luglio 1948

Yusuf Islam, nato Steven Demetre Georgiou e a lungo conosciuto con il nome d'arte Cat Stevens , è un cantautore britannico.



„It seems as if I am making a comeback but I have never really been away.“

—  Cat Stevens

Interview for Melody Maker http://justbackdated.blogspot.com/2014/06/cat-stevens-1970-interview.html with Chris Charlesworth (July 1970)
Contesto: It seems as if I am making a comeback but I have never really been away. It’s very strange because the whole attitude changes and everything is turned inside out. Now I am seeing the shiny side again. <!--
It has made all the difference to me because I had to have that break.

„I foolishly made light of certain provocative questions.“

—  Cat Stevens

"Chinese Whiskers," FAQ #18: "Did Cat Stevens Say, ‘Kill Rushdie!’?," Mountain of Light http://www.mountainoflight.co.uk/talks_cw.html (undated)
Contesto: In 1989, during the heat and height of the Satanic Verses controversy, I was silly enough to accept appearing on a program called Hypotheticals which posed imaginary scenarios by a well-versed (what if…?) barrister, Geoffrey Robertson QC. I foolishly made light of certain provocative questions. When asked what I’d do if Salman Rushdie entered a restaurant in which I was eating, I said, “I would probably call up Ayatollah Khomeini”; and, rather than go to a demonstration to burn an effigy of the author, I jokingly said I would have preferred that it'd be the “real thing”.
Criticize me for my bad taste, in hindsight, I agree. But these comments were part of a well-known British national trait; a touch of dry humor on my part. Just watch British comedy programs like "Have I Got News For You" or “Extras”, they are full of occasionally grotesque and sardonic jokes if you want them! … Certainly I regret giving those sorts of responses now. However, it must be noted that the final edit of the program was made to look extremely serious; hardly any laughs were left in and much common sense was savagely cut out. Most of the Muslim participants in the program wrote in and complained about the narrow and selective use of their comments, surreptitiously selected out of the 3-hour long recording of the debate. But the edit was not in our hands. Balanced arguments were cut out and the most sensational quotes, preserved.

„We believe that the civilised world is a multicultural, multi-religious world. That is the type of message we want to get across.“

—  Cat Stevens

"Attacks 'no excuse for racist violence'" in BBC News (22 September 2001) http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/1558319.stm
Contesto: We understand the anger, the anguish and suffering which this act of international terrorism has created amongst people.
What we are worried about is the impact of the wrong kind of response to it. … We believe that the civilised world is a multicultural, multi-religious world. That is the type of message we want to get across. … I think there are many who are Muslims and non-Muslims, who are not warmongers but peace makers and want this world to be a better place.
We believed the unison of the voices of so many people standing together against international terrorism is something to be valued and something to be built upon.

„Its that vast middle ground where people actually live, you know, that we have to reclaim; and in that area, everybody should be able to live together. And I don't think that God sent us prophets and books to fight about these books and these prophets. But they were telling us, actually, how to live together.“

—  Cat Stevens

Interview on CBS News Sunday Morning (30 November 2006)
Contesto: Here's a chance, I think, for us to kind of remind ourselves, of those things we all commonly enjoy and love and share, try to get back together. You know, singing out for a more peaceful world today, I think, can only do good. … I do believe that … a lot of Muslims have yet to learn, you know, the incredible great history and contribution of Islamic civilization — and its become very, if you like, in some way puritanical — that puritanical approach will become narrower and narrower and even become more fragmented. Its that vast middle ground where people actually live, you know, that we have to reclaim; and in that area, everybody should be able to live together. And I don't think that God sent us prophets and books to fight about these books and these prophets. But they were telling us, actually, how to live together. If we ignore those teachings — whichever faith you belong, you profess, then I think we'll be finding ourselves in an even deeper mess.

„We understand the anger, the anguish and suffering which this act of international terrorism has created amongst people.“

—  Cat Stevens

"Attacks 'no excuse for racist violence'" in BBC News (22 September 2001) http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/1558319.stm
Contesto: We understand the anger, the anguish and suffering which this act of international terrorism has created amongst people.
What we are worried about is the impact of the wrong kind of response to it. … We believe that the civilised world is a multicultural, multi-religious world. That is the type of message we want to get across. … I think there are many who are Muslims and non-Muslims, who are not warmongers but peace makers and want this world to be a better place.
We believed the unison of the voices of so many people standing together against international terrorism is something to be valued and something to be built upon.

„We believed the unison of the voices of so many people standing together against international terrorism is something to be valued and something to be built upon.“

—  Cat Stevens

"Attacks 'no excuse for racist violence'" in BBC News (22 September 2001) http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/1558319.stm
Contesto: We understand the anger, the anguish and suffering which this act of international terrorism has created amongst people.
What we are worried about is the impact of the wrong kind of response to it. … We believe that the civilised world is a multicultural, multi-religious world. That is the type of message we want to get across. … I think there are many who are Muslims and non-Muslims, who are not warmongers but peace makers and want this world to be a better place.
We believed the unison of the voices of so many people standing together against international terrorism is something to be valued and something to be built upon.

„I was a sitting target, in a way, for anybody who wanted to make some kind of headline.“

—  Cat Stevens

Interview on CBS News Sunday Morning (12 August 2007)
Contesto: I was a sitting target, in a way, for anybody who wanted to make some kind of headline. … I certainly never supported the Fatwa, but when I was asked about … the actual principle of blasphemy and capital punishment, well, like the Bible, I said, "You know, yeah, it's there, it's in the Koran." And I couldn't deny that.

„Certainly I regret giving those sorts of responses now.“

—  Cat Stevens

"Chinese Whiskers," FAQ #18: "Did Cat Stevens Say, ‘Kill Rushdie!’?," Mountain of Light http://www.mountainoflight.co.uk/talks_cw.html (undated)
Contesto: In 1989, during the heat and height of the Satanic Verses controversy, I was silly enough to accept appearing on a program called Hypotheticals which posed imaginary scenarios by a well-versed (what if…?) barrister, Geoffrey Robertson QC. I foolishly made light of certain provocative questions. When asked what I’d do if Salman Rushdie entered a restaurant in which I was eating, I said, “I would probably call up Ayatollah Khomeini”; and, rather than go to a demonstration to burn an effigy of the author, I jokingly said I would have preferred that it'd be the “real thing”.
Criticize me for my bad taste, in hindsight, I agree. But these comments were part of a well-known British national trait; a touch of dry humor on my part. Just watch British comedy programs like "Have I Got News For You" or “Extras”, they are full of occasionally grotesque and sardonic jokes if you want them! … Certainly I regret giving those sorts of responses now. However, it must be noted that the final edit of the program was made to look extremely serious; hardly any laughs were left in and much common sense was savagely cut out. Most of the Muslim participants in the program wrote in and complained about the narrow and selective use of their comments, surreptitiously selected out of the 3-hour long recording of the debate. But the edit was not in our hands. Balanced arguments were cut out and the most sensational quotes, preserved.

„I never called for the death of Salman Rushdie; nor backed the Fatwa issued by the Ayatollah Khomeini — and still don’t.“

—  Cat Stevens

"Chinese Whiskers," FAQ #18: "Did Cat Stevens Say, ‘Kill Rushdie!’?," http://www.mountainoflight.co.uk/talks_cw.html#18 Mountain of Light (undated)
Contesto: I never called for the death of Salman Rushdie; nor backed the Fatwa issued by the Ayatollah Khomeini — and still don’t. The book itself destroyed the harmony between peoples and created an unnecessary international crisis.
When asked about my opinion regarding blasphemy, I could not tell a lie and confirmed that — like both the Torah and the Gospel — the Qur’an considers it, without repentance, as a capital offense. The Bible is full of similar harsh laws if you’re looking for them. However, the application of such Biblical and Qur’anic injunctions is not to be outside of due process of law, in a place or land where such law is accepted and applied by the society as a whole.

„I'm very sad that this seems to be the No. 1 question people want to discuss. I had nothing to do with the issue other than what the media created.“

—  Cat Stevens

As quoted in "Cat Stevens Breaks His Silence," by Andrew Dansby in Rolling Stone (14 June 2000) http://www.rollingstone.com/artists/catstevens/articles/story/5927176/cat_stevens_breaks_his_silence; Leviticus 24:16 reads : "And he that blasphemeth the name of the LORD, he shall surely be put to death, and all the congregation shall certainly stone him: as well the stranger, as he that is born in the land, when he blasphemeth the name of the Lord, shall be put to death."
Contesto: I'm very sad that this seems to be the No. 1 question people want to discuss. I had nothing to do with the issue other than what the media created. I was innocently drawn into the whole controversy. So, after many years, I'm glad at least now that I have been given the opportunity to explain to the public and fans my side of the story in my own words. At a lecture, back in 1989, I was asked a question about blasphemy according to Islamic Law, I simply repeated the legal view according to my limited knowledge of the Scriptural texts, based directly on historical commentaries of the Qur'an. The next day the newspaper headlines read, "Cat Says, Kill Rushdie." I was abhorred, but what could I do? I was a new Muslim. If you ask a Bible student to quote the legal punishment of a person who commits blasphemy in the Bible, he would be dishonest if he didn't mention Leviticus 24:16.

„Here's a chance, I think, for us to kind of remind ourselves, of those things we all commonly enjoy and love and share, try to get back together.“

—  Cat Stevens

Interview on CBS News Sunday Morning (30 November 2006)
Contesto: Here's a chance, I think, for us to kind of remind ourselves, of those things we all commonly enjoy and love and share, try to get back together. You know, singing out for a more peaceful world today, I think, can only do good. … I do believe that … a lot of Muslims have yet to learn, you know, the incredible great history and contribution of Islamic civilization — and its become very, if you like, in some way puritanical — that puritanical approach will become narrower and narrower and even become more fragmented. Its that vast middle ground where people actually live, you know, that we have to reclaim; and in that area, everybody should be able to live together. And I don't think that God sent us prophets and books to fight about these books and these prophets. But they were telling us, actually, how to live together. If we ignore those teachings — whichever faith you belong, you profess, then I think we'll be finding ourselves in an even deeper mess.

„Balanced arguments were cut out and the most sensational quotes, preserved.“

—  Cat Stevens

"Chinese Whiskers," FAQ #18: "Did Cat Stevens Say, ‘Kill Rushdie!’?," Mountain of Light http://www.mountainoflight.co.uk/talks_cw.html (undated)
Contesto: In 1989, during the heat and height of the Satanic Verses controversy, I was silly enough to accept appearing on a program called Hypotheticals which posed imaginary scenarios by a well-versed (what if…?) barrister, Geoffrey Robertson QC. I foolishly made light of certain provocative questions. When asked what I’d do if Salman Rushdie entered a restaurant in which I was eating, I said, “I would probably call up Ayatollah Khomeini”; and, rather than go to a demonstration to burn an effigy of the author, I jokingly said I would have preferred that it'd be the “real thing”.
Criticize me for my bad taste, in hindsight, I agree. But these comments were part of a well-known British national trait; a touch of dry humor on my part. Just watch British comedy programs like "Have I Got News For You" or “Extras”, they are full of occasionally grotesque and sardonic jokes if you want them! … Certainly I regret giving those sorts of responses now. However, it must be noted that the final edit of the program was made to look extremely serious; hardly any laughs were left in and much common sense was savagely cut out. Most of the Muslim participants in the program wrote in and complained about the narrow and selective use of their comments, surreptitiously selected out of the 3-hour long recording of the debate. But the edit was not in our hands. Balanced arguments were cut out and the most sensational quotes, preserved.

„Criticize me for my bad taste, in hindsight, I agree.“

—  Cat Stevens

"Chinese Whiskers," FAQ #18: "Did Cat Stevens Say, ‘Kill Rushdie!’?," Mountain of Light http://www.mountainoflight.co.uk/talks_cw.html (undated)
Contesto: In 1989, during the heat and height of the Satanic Verses controversy, I was silly enough to accept appearing on a program called Hypotheticals which posed imaginary scenarios by a well-versed (what if…?) barrister, Geoffrey Robertson QC. I foolishly made light of certain provocative questions. When asked what I’d do if Salman Rushdie entered a restaurant in which I was eating, I said, “I would probably call up Ayatollah Khomeini”; and, rather than go to a demonstration to burn an effigy of the author, I jokingly said I would have preferred that it'd be the “real thing”.
Criticize me for my bad taste, in hindsight, I agree. But these comments were part of a well-known British national trait; a touch of dry humor on my part. Just watch British comedy programs like "Have I Got News For You" or “Extras”, they are full of occasionally grotesque and sardonic jokes if you want them! … Certainly I regret giving those sorts of responses now. However, it must be noted that the final edit of the program was made to look extremely serious; hardly any laughs were left in and much common sense was savagely cut out. Most of the Muslim participants in the program wrote in and complained about the narrow and selective use of their comments, surreptitiously selected out of the 3-hour long recording of the debate. But the edit was not in our hands. Balanced arguments were cut out and the most sensational quotes, preserved.

„The next day the newspaper headlines read, "Cat Says, Kill Rushdie." I was abhorred, but what could I do? I was a new Muslim. If you ask a Bible student to quote the legal punishment of a person who commits blasphemy in the Bible, he would be dishonest if he didn't mention Leviticus 24:16.“

—  Cat Stevens

As quoted in "Cat Stevens Breaks His Silence," by Andrew Dansby in Rolling Stone (14 June 2000) http://www.rollingstone.com/artists/catstevens/articles/story/5927176/cat_stevens_breaks_his_silence; Leviticus 24:16 reads : "And he that blasphemeth the name of the LORD, he shall surely be put to death, and all the congregation shall certainly stone him: as well the stranger, as he that is born in the land, when he blasphemeth the name of the Lord, shall be put to death."
Contesto: I'm very sad that this seems to be the No. 1 question people want to discuss. I had nothing to do with the issue other than what the media created. I was innocently drawn into the whole controversy. So, after many years, I'm glad at least now that I have been given the opportunity to explain to the public and fans my side of the story in my own words. At a lecture, back in 1989, I was asked a question about blasphemy according to Islamic Law, I simply repeated the legal view according to my limited knowledge of the Scriptural texts, based directly on historical commentaries of the Qur'an. The next day the newspaper headlines read, "Cat Says, Kill Rushdie." I was abhorred, but what could I do? I was a new Muslim. If you ask a Bible student to quote the legal punishment of a person who commits blasphemy in the Bible, he would be dishonest if he didn't mention Leviticus 24:16.

„Music can be healing, and with my history and my knowledge of both sides of what looks like a gigantic divide in the world, I feel I can point a way forward to our common humanity again.“

—  Cat Stevens

As quoted in "The Billboard Q and A: Yusuf Islam" by Nigel Williamson, in Billboard Magazine (17 November 2006) http://web.archive.org/20070817023056/www.billboard.com/bbcom/feature/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1003409809
Contesto: The last place I wanted to return to was the music business. But it's the people and the cause that matter and right now there's an important need, which is bridge-building. I wanted to support the cause of humanity, because that's what I always sang about.
Music can be healing, and with my history and my knowledge of both sides of what looks like a gigantic divide in the world, I feel I can point a way forward to our common humanity again. It's a big step for me but it's a natural step. I don't feel at all irked by the responsibility — I feel inspired.

„I wish to express my heartfelt horror at the indiscriminate terrorist attacks committed against innocent people of the United States yesterday.“

—  Cat Stevens

Statement on his website (12 September 2001), quoted in "Cat Stevens Condemns Attack" in Rolling Stone (17 September 2001) http://uk.real.com/music/artist/Cat_Stevens/articles/364932/-related-articles-page-1/
Contesto: I wish to express my heartfelt horror at the indiscriminate terrorist attacks committed against innocent people of the United States yesterday. While it is still not clear who carried out the attacks, it must be stated that no right thinking follower of Islam could possibly condone such an action: the Qur'an equates the murder of one innocent person with the murder of the whole of humanity. We pray for the families of all those who lost their lives in this unthinkable act of violence as well as all those injured; I hope to reflect the feelings of all Muslims and people around the world whose sympathies go out to the victims at this sorrowful moment.

„I want to just get heart-to-heart, make sure people understand some of the real subtle beauties of what I've discovered.“

—  Cat Stevens

On getting back into producing new music, interviewed on "Yusuf Islam's New Album" at CBS News (12 August 2007) http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=2226452n&tag=related;photovideo
Contesto: A big turning point happened when my son brought back a guitar into the house — You know, 'cause I'd given all those guitars away to charity — way back in 1979 and hadn't really touched the instrument, you know, for like two decades. … So then one day … when everybody's asleep and nobody's watching, I pick it up — and lo and behold, I still know where to put my fingers and out comes this music. I said, "Maybe I've got another job to do." And in this time and period it's probably the best thing I can do because lecturing, politics, God, I've got nothing to do with that. I want to just get heart-to-heart, make sure people understand some of the real subtle beauties of what I've discovered.

„A lot of people would have loved me to keep singing … You come to a point where you have sung, more or less … your whole repertoire and you want to get down to the job of living.“

—  Cat Stevens

On leaving the music business in 1979,in an interview with CBS News Sunday Morning (12 August 2007) http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/11/30/sunday/main2221286.shtml
Contesto: A lot of people would have loved me to keep singing … You come to a point where you have sung, more or less … your whole repertoire and you want to get down to the job of living. You know, up until that point, I hadn't had a life. I'd been searching, been on the road.

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