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Tea For The Tillerman (Remastered) Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered

4.8 out of 5 stars 374 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered, May 23, 2000
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Remastered 1970 classic featuring "Father & Son","Wild World","Where Do The Children Play".

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Cat Stevens tends to be lumped in with the early-'70s singer-songwriter school led by James Taylor and Carole King, but he actually fits in rather neatly with such wistful English contemporaries as Nick Drake, Syd Barrett, and Donovan. Tea for the Tillerman's "Wild World," "Into White," and "Longer Boats" indicate that he may have been a more gifted tunesmith than the lot of them. As with the best of the Brit folk-rockers, Stevens mixed melancholy with whimsy. Yes, he was prone to airy platitudes, but when he harnessed his eccentricities, as he did throughout this 1970 masterwork, you had something truly distinctive. A natural cult artist, à la Tim Buckley and Leonard Cohen, Stevens connected with record-buyers to the tune of 25 million units sold before he changed his name to Yusuf Islam, established an Islamic school, and raised a ruckus by supporting Ayatollah Khomeini's death decree against author Salman Rushdie. This remastered 2000 version of the 1970 recording, which was overseen by the artist, is a vast improvement over the earlier CD reissue. --Steve Stolder
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 23, 2000)
  • Rmst ed. edition
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered
  • Label: A&M
  • ASIN: B00004T9VY
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (374 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,259 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By David Parker on August 19, 2000
Format: Audio CD
I first bought this album when it came out in 1970, at the ripe and geeky age of 14. The album stuck out like a sore thumb to my friends amongst all my Zeppelin, Deep Purple and Alice Cooper albums, but has remained a special favorite forever. While some people put Cat Stevens into that folky, James Taylor category, they obviously haven't heard this album, surely Cat's finest moment. Lyrically and musically, this album is simply stunning in its composition, from one magical song to the next. I hate to use the word "dark" or "melancholic" about such an uplifting album, but in comparison to the other singer-songwriters of the day, this album is simply in a different league - just listen to the poignancy in a song like "Sad Lisa" or the simple poetic beauty of "Into White". Timeless because we can all relate to the pain and pleasure of discovering what life is about during the volatility of youth, and that's what this album so eloquently paints on songs like "On the road to find out" and "Miles from nowhere". And the newly remastered sound is phenomenal - like the music and lyrics itself, it sounds like it was recorded yesterday. I'm so glad I had the pleasure of growing up with such a masterpiece.
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Format: Audio CD
I had previously reviewed this CD, but I'll have another shot at it, as I now feel that my previous review does not do this terrific album justice. So here is my new review for Cat Stevens' "Tea For The Tillerman":
Cat Stevens' "Tea For The Tillerman" is truly a classic album, and they don't come any classier than this. Stevens was a talented musician, and was not afraid to make music that came from the heart - a quality many musicians nowadays lack (see Limp Bizkit). Stevens had the ability to write memorable tunes and pen intelligent, thought-provoking lyrics, which made him the top of his game in the early 70's, and has gained him successions of new fans year after year, even if he isn't Cat Stevens anymore (I believe he is now known as Yusuf Islam). "Tea For The Tillerman" is in my opinion, Stevens' finest album, and one of the most perfect albums ever recorded. Although most people are only familiar with the albums' hit singles ("Wild World", "Father And Son" and "Where Do The Children Play") - each one a classic in its own right, the other eight songs on the album are equally as great. The songs are not overly produced, and comprise largely of acoustic guitar, bass, keyboards and drums, with the odd string arrangement here and there (arranged by Del Newman). The album kicks off with "Where Do The Children Play?" and although it may strike the average listener as a nice, simple tune, the lyrics present a social commentary that is as relevant today as it was almost thirty years ago (in a world dominated by materialism, technology and want, is there any room for children to play and carry on with their simple untinctured lives?).
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Format: Audio CD
I've played the guitar for nearly thirty years now, and I learned how from Cat Stevens, James Taylor, and Jim Croce (with some help from Lightfoot and Fogelberg and CSN+/-Y and a handful of others). Moreover, name any drug and I probably know someone who has attempted to play "Moonshadow" around a campfire while under the influence of that drug.

So it is not at all lightly that I name _Tea for the Tillerman_ as one of my favorite albums of all time, and a much better introduction to Cat Stevens than any of his "greatest hits" collections. He had two absolutely great albums; this is one of them. The other was _Teaser and the Firecat_, and _Mona Bone Jakon_ was darned close. If you have those three, you have most of the "very best of" Cat Stevens already; borrow _Buddha and the Chocolate Box_ from somebody and tape "Sun/C79" and "Oh, Very Young," and you'll have the rest.

(Not that his other stuff isn't _good_, but it's mostly not of the same quality -- though portions of _Catch Bull At Four_ come within inches of it. I don't have much patience with "fans" who tell us that the rest of us aren't "true" fans if we find "Foreigner Suite" to be much ado about nothing and don't especially care for _Izitso_. If we have to suspend our powers of discrimination and uncritically adore everything an artist emits, who wants to be a "true" fan of _anybody_? And what genuine artist would want such "fans"?)

I think the quality of _Teaser_ is a bit more evenly distributed than that of _Tea_. But _Tea_ seems to me to hit higher heights.
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Format: Audio CD
Along with "Teaser and the Firecat" this album represents the first half of the greatest one/two punch a singer songwriter has ever released. Recorded in around 1970 ...the spare instrumentation and wonderfully timeless songs still hold up today!

The remastering was excellent on the previous edition so that isn't the big deal here...its the bonus CD. While not as exciting as the Bonus disc for Teaser which featured many solo demo recordings by Cat Stevens...the bonus tracks on this....mostly "live" versions of the album tracks are still a welcome addition to the collection of any Cat Stevens fan...and I'm not ashamed to say I am and have always been. The singular Demo...the classic "wild world" by Cat on acoustic guitar is worth the price alone for me....the booklet that comes with it features some nice pix and an intro written sept '08 by Cat and notes from his producer and guitarist..
a very nice presentation of one of the greatest albums of all time!

Enjoy....
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