BOSTON — Cat Stevens is perhaps unique in the history of modern popular music. He simply disappeared from public view at the height of his popularity.
Unlike today's angst-ridden rockers, Stevens didn't leave because he was sick of all the attention. He left to devote his life to Islam. In 1977, Stevens became Yusuf Islam and by 1979, his recording career was effectively over.
But in January, Mr. Stevens was making headlines again, this time for his announcement that he will produce an album of Bosnian songs. He has written two of the songs on it, and has said he might sing one.
Stevens has recorded one album since 1979, but it was a mostly spoken-word album about the Muslim religious leader Muhammad called "The Life of The Last Prophet."
Stevens was born Steven Demitri Georgiou to a Greek Cypriot father and Swedish mother in London. He still lives in a north London suburb, teaching at the Islamiya School, a Muslim school he founded in 1981. He is married and has five children.
In 1986, British tabloids sparked a controversy when he was asked how he felt about the Ayatollah Khomeini's death sentence on Salman Rushdie for writing "The Satanic Verses," a book very critical of Islam. He said he supports the Islamic law but did not advocate anyone stepping outside national laws to do it.