Teaser and the firecat

In 1971 Cat Stevens released his fifth studio album titled "Teaser And The Firecat" as a follow-up to the successful "Tea For The Tillerman" (also reviewed in my blog). 

Picture of the children's book

The album starts with "The Wind" which was also used in the movies "Rushmore" and "Almost Famous". Followed by Greek-flavoured joy of “Rubylove” with bouzouki. Probably an influence from his father who was from Cyprus. In "Moonshadow" he's enjoying seeing his own shadow under the moon while on holiday in Spain. Rick Wakeman from Yes played piano on the worldwide hit "Morning Has Broken" which is the only song he didn't wrote himself. The rhythm of "Peace Train" suggests the movement of train. The songs are about concern of what is happening in the world and fighting for peace. Particularly in "Changes IV" where he shows his world view: “And we all know it’s better/Yesterday has past/Now let’s all start living/For the one that’s going to last”.

Children's book by Cat Stevens

The album is also the soundtrack of a children's book written and illustrated by Stevens himself. It tells the story of the top-hatted young Teaser and his pet called Firecat. Teaser attempted to put the moon back in its place after it falls from the sky. The album reached #2 in both the UK and US. #11 in the Netherlands.

Morning Has Broken - single cover

In 1977 an animated version narrated by comedian Spike Milligan using the song "Moonshadow" was a segment in the Fantastic Animation Festival. Cat Stevens left the music world and converted to Islam in 1978 and changed his name to Yusuf Islam (later just Yusuf). He returned to the music business in 1990 and realising there were only a few educational resources designed to teach children about the Islamic religion Yusuf wrote and produced a children's album titled "A Is for Allah" in 2000.

Orginal album cover

Teaser And The Firecat (1971)
The Wind / Rubylove / If I Laugh / Changes IV / How Can I Tell You / Tuesday's Dead / Morning Has Broken / Bitterblue / Moonshadow / Peace Train

Moonshadow from 1977 animation narrated by Spike Milligan

Morning Has Broken
Ruby Love

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