Oh Very Young – Cat Stevens

Cat Stevens, is a British musician of Greek Cypriot and Swedish ancestry. He is a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, educator, philanthropist and prominent convert to Islam.  His birth name is Steven Demetre Georgiou, but now goes by his Islamic name, Yusuf Islam.

Steven Georgiou began to perform his songs in coffee houses and pubs. At first he tried forming a band, but soon realized he preferred performing solo. Thinking that his Greek name might not be memorable as a stage name, he sought a new one. He adoped the stage name Cat Stevens, in part, because a girlfriend said he had eyes like a cat, but mainly because he said, “I couldn’t imagine anyone going to the record store and asking for that Stephen Demetre Georgiou album. And in England, and I was sure in America, they loved animals.”

Oh Very Young

Oh Very Young” is a song that was released on Cat Steven’s 1974 album Buddha and the Chocolate Box.  Its lyric is a gentle response to Don McLean’s hit American Pie released two years previously. Like McLean, he stops short of mentioning Buddy Holly directly, but questions the ill-fated songwriter’s “Not Fade Away” (the last song Holly performed) lyric “a love to last more than one day, a lover’s love, not fade away” with his own “denim blue, fading up to the sky, and though you want him to last forever you know he never will, and the patches make the goodbye harder still”. Stevens then mentions the young American’s mould-breaking work “Words Of Love” in the line “will you carry the words of love with you, will you ride the great white bird into heaven, and though you want to last forever you know you never will, and the goodbye makes the journey harder still”.

[flv]http://djallyn.org/media/cat-stevens_oh-very-young.flv[/flv]

Oh very young
What will you leave us this time
You’re only dancing on this earth for a short while
And though your dreams may toss and turn you now
They will vanish away like your daddy’s best jeans
Denim Blue fading up to the sky
And though you want them (HIM)to last forever
You know they (HE) never will
You know they (HE) never will
And the patches make the goodbye harder still

Oh very young
What will you leave us this time
There’ll never be a better chance to change your mind
And if you want this world to see a better day
Will you carry the words of love with you
Will you ride the great white bird into heaven
And though you want to last forever
You know you never will
You know you never will
And the goodbye makes the journey harder still

Oh very young
What will you leave us this time
You’re only dancing on this earth for a short while
Oh very young
What will you leave us this time

  • Audio from the 1974 album, Buddha and the Chocolate Box:

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About DJ Allyn

DJ Allyn is a burned out radio guy who went on to become a burned out sound engineer for a few Seattle area grunge bands in the 1980s and 1990s. Left the madness of worldwide tours with bands, cleaned up my act and went into the relative sanity of sound engineering for television series. Currently working as the Director of Sound for a television series being filmed in North Vancouver, British Columbia. I am always on the lookout for interesting videos, old music, and fun.

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