Cat Stevens Releases 50th Anniversary Box Sets: Listen

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Cat Stevens (Photo © Shepard Sherbell/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images and UMe)

Cat Stevens has announced the release of two box sets to celebrate the 50th anniversary of his 1970 albums, Mona Bone Jakon and Tea For the Tillerman. The two albums were originally released just seven months apart. The Super Deluxe Collector’s Editions will include plenty of previously unreleased songs, alongside other rarities. Both will also be available in abbreviated versions; all of them arrive on December 4 via A&M/UMe. Many of the unreleased tracks were made available in advance; listen to them below.

The collections follow the Sept. 18, 2020, release of Tea For the Tillerman² in which Yusuf/Cat Stevens re-recorded his earlier album, considered by many to be his masterpiece.

The two 1970 albums first established Stevens as a premier acoustic troubadour and launched him into international superstardom. The new Mona Bone Jakon set will include 24 previously unreleased songs, and Tea For the Tillerman will feature 21 unreleased tracks.

From the Oct. 22 announcement: the April 1970 release of Mona Bone Jakon was inspired by a near-fatal battle with TB and extended period of convalescence during which he studied classical music, metaphysical literature and meditative self-reflection. The album has a deeply personal, almost vulnerable quality that, arguably, makes it the most compelling and human of all of Stevens’ work.

Marking the start of a long-running creative partnership with producer (and former Yardbird) Paul Samwell-Smith, the album includes the deeply romantic “Lady D’Arbanville,” the spiritually uplifting “I Think I See The Light,” the tongue-in-cheek “Pop Star” and the heart-rendering “Trouble.”

Footage of a long-lost music video for “Lady D’Arbanville,” which was shot in 1970, was rediscovered in 2020. It stars Stevens alongside Patti D’Arbanville – the American actress/model who inspired the song. It is believed to be one of the earliest cinematic music videos ever made.

Watch the long-lost music video for “Lady D’Arbanville”

Mona Bone Jakon is presented in a new 2020 remastered version on CD, completed at Abbey Road Studios, overseen by original album producer, Paul Samwell-Smith, and a new 2020 mix by David Hefti on CD and LP. The Super Deluxe Edition (4-CD/2-LP/Blu-ray) also includes an exclusive third CD of previously unreleased demos, and a fourth CD featuring 18 live performances from 1970-71.

Listen to the studio demo of the playful “I Want Some Sun”

The set is completed with a live 12” etched vinyl EP of the rare audience recording of “Live At Plumpton Jazz & Blues Festival” from August 1970, and with a Blu-ray disc featuring the original promo video of “Lady D’Arbanville,” plus eight live TV performances, and the HD audio of the new Mona Bone Jakon 2020 Mix. There’s also a selection of memorabilia including the Island Records press kit, two Island press photos, a replica 1970 Plumpton Jazz and Blues flyer, a Cat Stevens tour sticker and “dustbin” greetings card and pop art print in a card envelope.

It’s also available as a 2-CD Deluxe Edition and as a single CD and single LP.

The Tea For the Tillerman Super Deluxe box set (5-CD/2-LP/Blu-ray) features a new 2020 remaster, also completed at Abbey Road Studios and overseen by original album producer Paul Samwell-Smith, and mix, of the original 1970 Island Records multitrack master tape, overseen by Stevens and engineer David Hefti. The 2020 Mix also appears on the LP which is exclusive to this box set.

CD3 features the newly released Tea For the Tillerman². (The announcement notes that Stevens chose to include it with the set in order to present the most complete edition of the original album, showing how these songs are as pertinent today as they were when written over 50 years ago.) CD4 includes demos, outtakes and alternate versions, including two previously unreleased tracks (“Can This Be Love?,” “It’s So Good,” “If You Want To Sing Out, Sing Out,” and “Don’t Be Shy”), while CD5 features 25 live performances – five previously unreleased tracks recorded Live at the Troubadour, four previously unreleased live performances from the December 8, 1970, show at Fillmore East, and six previously unreleased live from British, French and German TV performances over 1970-71.

Listen to “Father and Son,” live at the Troubadour in 1970

The box set also includes the previously unreleased “Can This Be Love?”; originally scheduled to appear on the album, the song was written by Stevens along with “Father and Son” for a proposed musical project, Revolussia, in 1969.

Listen to “Can This Be Love?”

The Super Deluxe box set is rounded out with a Blu-ray featuring HD 24bit/96khz audio of the 2020 Mix, as well as eight previously unreleased live TV performances, seven tracks performed live at KCNET studios, Los Angeles, and the official “Father and Son” video. Also housed in a card envelope within the box is a “Pick Up a Good Book” bookmark, a Stevens-designed “Miles From Nowhere” print, a reproduction handwritten lyric sheet for “Miles From Nowhere,” a fold-out “Live From the Troubadour 1970” poster, and a Tea For the Tillerman sticker.

It’s also available as a 2-CD Deluxe Edition and as a single CD and single LP.

See the complete track listing and listen to several more tracks below the links.

Related: 1970 in 50 classic rock albums

Tea For the Tillerman Super Deluxe Edition Box Set

(CD1) Original Album (2020 Remaster)
Where Do The Children Play?
Hard Headed Woman
Wild World
Sad Lisa
Miles From Nowhere
But I Might Die Tonight
Longer Boats
Into White
On The Road To Find Out
Father and Son
Tea for the Tillerman

(CD2 / 1LP) Original Album (2020 Mix)
Where Do The Children Play?
Hard Headed Woman
Wild World
Sad Lisa
Miles From Nowhere
But I Might Die Tonight
Longer Boats
Into White
On The Road To Find Out
Father and Son
Tea for the Tillerman

(CD3) Tea for the Tillerman²
Where Do The Children Play?
Hard Headed Woman
Wild World
Sad Lisa
Miles From Nowhere
But I Might Die Tonight
Longer Boats
Into White
On The Road To Find Out
Father and Son
Tea For the Tillerman

(CD4) Demos / Outtakes / Alternate Versions
Wild World (Demo)
Miles From Nowhere (Studio Demo)
But I Might Die Tonight (Deep End Movie Version)
Can This Be Love?
Honey Man (duet with Elton John)
It’s So Good
If You Want To Sing Out, Sing Out (Demo)
Don’t Be Shy (Demo)
I’ve Got A Thing About Seeing My Grandson Grow Old
Love Lives In The Sky
The Joke
If You Want To Sing Out, Sing Out
Don’t Be Shy

(CD5) (Live)
Where Do The Children Play? (Live at the Troubadour)
Hard Headed Woman (Live at the Troubadour)
Wild World (Live at the Troubadour)
Longer Boats (Live at the Troubadour)
Into White (Live at the Troubadour)
On The Road To Find Out (Live at the Troubadour)
Father and Son (Live at the Troubadour)
Where Do The Children Play? (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
Wild World (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
Hard Headed Woman (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
Miles From Nowhere (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
Longer Boats (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
On The Road To Find Out (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
Father and Son (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
Wild World (Cat Stevens In Concert, 27/11/1971)
Into White (Cat Stevens In Concert, 27/11/1971)
Tea for the Tillerman (Cat Stevens In Concert, 27/11/1971)
Wild World (Beat Club, 25.08.70)
Hard Headed Woman (Beat Club, 25.08.70)
Wild World (Gala du Midem, France 24.01.71)
Wild World (Deux Sur La 2, France, 12.10.70)
Moonshadow (Live At Fillmore East (1970)
Father and Son (Live At Fillmore East (1970)
Changes IV (Live At Fillmore East (1970)
Peace Train (Live At Fillmore East (1970)

(Blu-ray disc) Music Video & Live Videos + High Res Audio of Original Album (2020 Mix)

Father and Son – Official Video
Where Do The Children Play? (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
Wild World (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
Hard Headed Woman (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
Miles From Nowhere (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
Longer Boats (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
On The Road To Find Out (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
Father and Son (Live At KCET Studios, Los Angeles, USA (08/06/71)
Wild World (Cat Stevens In Concert, 27/11/1971)
Into White (Cat Stevens In Concert, 27/11/1971)
Father and Son (Cat Stevens In Concert, 27/11/1971)
Wild World (Beat Club, 25.08.70)
Hard Headed Woman (Beat Club, 25.08.70)
Wild World (Gala du Midem, France 24.01.71)
Wild World (Deux Sur La 2, France, 12.10.70)
Wild World (TV Concert, France, 01.11.1970)

(12”) Live At The Troubadour, 1970

Where Do The Children Play?
Hard Headed Woman
Wild World
Longer Boats
Into White
On The Road To Find Out
Father and Son

Mona Bone Jakon Super Deluxe Edition Box Set

(CD1) Original Album (2020 Remaster)
Lady D’Arbanville
Maybe You’re Right
Pop Star
I Think I See The Light
Trouble
Mona Bone Jakon
I Wish, I Wish
Katmandu
Time
Fill My Eyes
Lilywhite

(CD2 / 1LP) Original Album (2020 Mix)
Lady D’Arbanville
Maybe You’re Right
Pop Star
I Think I See The Light
Trouble
Mona Bone Jakon
I Wish, I Wish
Katmandu
Time
Fill My Eyes
Lilywhite

(CD3) Demos
Maybe You’re Right (Studio Demo)
I Think I See The Light (Studio Demo)
Trouble (Studio Demo)
Mona Bone Jakon (Home Demo)
I Wish I Wish (Studio Demo)
Katmandu (Studio Demo)
Time (Studio Demo)
Fill My Eyes (Studio Demo)
I Want Some Sun (Studio Demo)

Listen to the studio demo of “Maybe You’re Right”

(CD4) Live
Interview (Live At The BBC 16/06/70)
Lady D’Arbanville (Live At The BBC 16/06/70)
Maybe You’re Right (Cat Stevens In Concert, 27/11/1971)
Trouble (Live At The BBC 16/06/70)
Katmandu (Live At The BBC 16/06/70)
Changes IV (Live at Plumpton Jazz & Blues Festival, 08/08/70)
Time / Fill My Eyes (Live at Plumpton Jazz & Blues Festival, 08/08/70)
Where Do The Children Play? (Live at Plumpton Jazz & Blues Festival, 08/08/70)
Lady D’Arbanville (Live at Plumpton Jazz & Blues Festival, 08/08/70)
Maybe You’re Right (Live at Plumpton Jazz & Blues Festival, 08/08/70)
Father and Son (Live at Plumpton Jazz & Blues Festival, 08/08/70)
Lady D’Arbanville (BEATCLUB (GERMANY) 25.08.70)
Lady D’Arbanville (TV CONCERT (FRANCE) 01.11.1970)
Maybe You’re Right (TV CONCERT (FRANCE) 01.11.1970)
Katmandu (TV CONCERT (FRANCE) 01.11.1970)
Interview (TV CONCERT (FRANCE) 01.11.1970)
Lady D’Arbanville (DEUX SUR LA 2 (FRANCE), 12.10.70)
Maybe You’re Right (POP DEUX (FRANCE) 27.02.1971)

(Blu-ray disc) Music Video & Live Videos + High Res Audio of Original Album (2020 Mix)
Lady D’Arbanville (Official Video)
Lady D’Arbanville (BEATCLUB (GERMANY) 25.08.70)
Lady D’Arbanville (TV CONCERT (FRANCE) 01.11.1970)
Maybe You’re Right (TV CONCERT (FRANCE) 01.11.1970)
Katmandu (TV CONCERT (FRANCE) 01.11.1970)
Interview (TV CONCERT (FRANCE) 01.11.1970)
Lady D’Arbanville (DEUX SUR LA 2 (FRANCE), 12.10.70)
Maybe You’re Right (POP DEUX (FRANCE) 27.02.1971)
Maybe You’re Right (Cat Stevens In Concert, 27/11/1971)

(12” Etched Vinyl) Live At Plumpton Jazz & Blues Festival (08/08/70)

Changes IV
Time / Fill My Eyes
Where Do The Children Play?
Lady D’Arbanville
Maybe You’re Right
Father and Son

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