Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Stevens' hidden gem revealed

Last evening seemed like a good time for a little CAT STEVENS.
After a lengthy, mind-clearing walk, I sipped a beer, looked through a rugby league book and listened to a succession of Stevens' fabulous songs -- "Wild World," "Moonshadow," "Peace Train," "Oh Very Young" and "(Remember the Days of the) Old School Yard" to name just a handful.

A towering songwriter, Stevens didn't even give a contemporary release to one of his songs that has grown to become my favorite.

"I'VE GOT A THING ABOUT SEEING MY GRANDSON GROW OLD" was recorded as a demo in 1970, but wasn't released until its inclusion on "THE VERY BEST OF CAT STEVENS."

Stevens discloses in the song that his greatest wish for the future is the prospect of seeing his family age with him:

"I just can't wait to see that city on the moon, with air conditioned gardens that'll play your favorite tune. I'll see my feet upon that street if it's the last thing that I'll do. Even sweep the roads to be there. But I've got no time for silly chitter chatter, I'm on my way. Cause while my blood's still warm and my mind doesn't matter. I'm hoping to stay. 'Cause I've got a thing about seeing my grandson grow old."

It's a brilliant song that didn't see the light of day until years after it was recorded.

That's the mark of a great songwriter: Stevens tossed aside songs other writers would have killed for.


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