In a daring article published in the Telegraph, Yusuf Islam opens up on his reasons for a return to music. In one line he says, ‘they told me to stop playing and take up learning. I tell them listen to me, this is our culture which we have lost touch with’.- This is cat Steven’s aka Yusuf Islam’s come back line in the telegraph article published by him in response to his critics read here. A some what plausible attempt to make-believe this is the only intended reason for the article. However, the under-current theme is a public relations venture. After 36 years of absence from the music scene, Yusuf Islam has come back all guns blazing. With recent sold-out gigs across England and a new biography out, Yusuf is going all out to promote his new image; a trendy 67-year-old Muslim cool guy. With a crew cut jacket and pair of bleached out jeans, it is clear Yusuf is reminiscent of his former days and somewhat regretful in putting down his guitar in the first place. He seems to be a man of ambiguity, the first to introduce the nasheed industry to the Muslim world with classics like ‘A is for Allah’ and ‘Salatullah’, he is now also the first to throw open the doors to mainstream music for aspiring new age, white-collar type Muslims; Yusuf is the Noah leading his flock from the tyranny of fanatical muzlims!
The sold out gigs are being seen as a first in a long line of music shows he plans to hold here in the UK and across the world in his world tour. Whether in UK or elsewhere the man is clearly paving the way to ‘normalize’ music, dance and fan groupies; a dedicated loyal group of fans willing to follow their idol anywhere and everywhere they can.
The prophet, the honorable and noble one (sallahu alihi wasallam) forewarned people of this fitna which will arise in the latter days. The Telegraph article has already caused much controversy, he pins the blame on the Muslim community for his absence from music and the tribal-style objections and blank faced expressions he faced when being told ‘music is haram brother, singing and dancing are no goes for a good Muslim. What is happening to you?’. This is the state of the self-indulging and undignified Muslim ‘role’ models of this day and age. Self-projection and profitability is put first before anything else. It was a strategic move on the part of Mr Yusuf Islam. A good way for his PR gurus to get his story out by willing give an interview to the Telegraph and labeling it, ‘Muslim community criticized me for picking up a guitar again’. – Cashing in on the hot topic of Muslims and Islam in the media.
The telegraph among other national newspapers is infamous in being the first to run a series of high-profile exposé from Edward Snowdon’s NSA files to politicians expenses claims, it is no coincidence why Yusuf Islam chose to go with the Telegraph for this story and what his intentions are. Showing a complete sense of indifference to the fact this will only serve to deepen the already clearly defined stereotypical image of Muslims and Islam in general; a group of people devoid of any social and civil enjoyment and pleasure, a death cult, ISIS style men and women bent of plunging the world back into stone-age savagery. Tearing apart families and social structures of normality and dignity. His attempt is to say, ‘hey look at me, I’m not like the rest of these crazies, come and listen to my music’. Further distancing himself from the Muslim community by painting them as uneducated backward people.
If you want to attract attention and ‘be’ someone in this world, all you has to do is somehow blame Muslims for something and tie this in with the fundamental flaws of Islamic laws, as Mr Yusuf Islam has done. You will have the media clambering over themselves to give you a publishing contract, a chance to become newspaper columnist and all the media attention you can need to come out and mention how dehumanizing you felt under the constant duress of Muslim fundamentalist extremists who want to stop you from doing everything!
Despite having aged and grown a dignified snowy beard, Yusuf Islam seems to have gone back into something at a time he should have began to distance himself from. That is, the dunya and all it has to offer. It is not unsurprising to see this happen, the pattern is all to self-fulfilling all over the world. Whether you are a world-wide influential Islāmic scholar who has gone back into politics in the indo-pak region, or a celebrity Muslim. The age-old distraction of the love of dunya increases with more time spent here on earth; Yusuf Islam clearly fitting this image.
One would have thought as more time draws closer for a person to meet with his maker, he will withdraw himself to straighten his affairs and make amends. It seems a man gets stuck in a time vortex of some sort where the love, fame and name of dunya increase in the heart with every passing time. Yusuf Islam is treading on dangerous grounds by trying to resurrect his former life; Cat Stevens. With a move to show proofs where possible to fortify himself in his new music career. The beloved said
The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said:
“Among my ummah there will certainly be people who permit zinaa, silk, alcohol and musical instruments…” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari ta’leeqan, no. 5590; narrated as mawsool by al-Tabaraani and al-Bayhaqi.