Yusuf Islam, formerly known as Cat Stevens, booed at comeback gig
FANS have rallied round the musician formerly known as Cat Stevens after he was booed by a small number of people at the first gig of a long-awaited comeback tour.
A small number of people walked out when Yusuf Islam, staging his first tour since 1976, interrupted his performance in Dublin on Sunday night for a 40-minute presentation of a new London stage show, media reports said.
Fans, some of whom slow-handclapped and chanted We're bored,” were apparently angry because they wanted to hear more of him singing his old Cat Stevens hits, including Wild World, Moonshadow and Father and Son.
Making light of the incident, Islam - who also played songs from his new albums - quipped: "Now I know how Bob Dylan must have felt" - a reference to the infamous incident when a fan blasted Dylan as "Judas" for turning electric.
And fans have since then deluged his website to defend him.
"I know there is no excuse for stupid, rude behaviour. But in a way the crazys just wanted all of you all of the time... So I hope you saw past the few bullies, and heard us shouting your name," wrote Ailish Faulkner, from Dublin.
"I was also at Dublin concert and apologise for some of the barbarians," wrote Jamie Young, adding: I look forward to your musical but also hope you can bear to appear and sing some old memories in Ireland again."
Tom Nelligan added: "I really hope Yusuf doesn't think that we're all like those ignorant people in the audience... I was in the front row and it was fantastic."
A spokesman for the singer - who is to play three more dates in Birmingham, Liverpool and London this month and next in the Guess I'll Take My Time Tour - did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The 61-year-old was born in London as Steven Georgiou and had hits in the 1960s and 1970s as Cat Stevens, before changing his name and retreating from the pop stage, devoting himself to education and philanthropy.
He gradually returned to music in the 2000s and released the pop album An Other Cup in 2006, his first in 28 years, under the name Yusuf, followed by a new album this year, Roadsinger.