Al Stewart - Year Of The Cat



Year of the Cat is the seventh studio album by Al Stewart, released in 1976. It was produced and engineered by Alan Parsons. Its sales helped by the hit single "Year of the Cat", co-written by Peter Wood and described by AllMusic as "one of those 'mysterious woman' songs", the album was a top five hit in the United States. The other single from the album was "On the Border". Stewart wrote "Lord Grenville" about the Elizabethan sailor and explorer Sir Richard Grenville (1542–1591).



Stewart had all of the music and orchestration written and completely recorded before he even had a title for any of the songs. In a Canadian radio interview he stated that he has done this for six of his albums, and he often writes four different sets of lyrics for each song.


The title track derives from a song Stewart wrote in 1966 called "Foot of the Stage" with prescient lyrics about Tony Hancock, one of Britain's favourite comedians who died by suicide two years later. When Stewart discovered that Hancock was not well known in the United States, he went back to his original title "Year of the Cat".





Lyrics


On a morning from a Bogart movie

In a country where they turn back time

You go strolling through the crowd like Peter Lorre

Contemplating a crime


She comes out of the sun in a silk dress running

Like a watercolor in the rain

Don't bother asking for explanations

She'll just tell you that she came


In the year of the cat


She doesn't give you time for questions

As she locks up your arm in hers

And you follow till your sense of which direction

Completely disappears


By the blue tiled walls near the market stalls

There's a hidden door she leads you to

These days, she says, "I feel my life

Just like a river running through"


The year of the cat


Well, she looks at you so coolly

And her eyes shine like the moon in the sea

She comes in incense and patchouli

So you take her, to find what's waiting inside


The year of the cat


Well morning comes and you're still with her

And the bus and the tourists are gone

And you've thrown away your choice and lost your ticket

So you have to stay on


But the drumbeat strains of the night remain

In the rhythm of the new-born day

You know sometime you're bound to leave her

But for now you're going to stay


In the year of the cat

Year of the cat