Cat Stevens cancels New York tour date in protest over scalpers


Singer Cat Stevens has cancelled the New York date on a highly-anticipated fall tour – his first in nearly 40 years - because he refuses to allow scalpers to make money off the event.

Touring the U.S. as Yusuf Cat Stevens for the first time since 1978, the folk singer announced Wednesday morning on his website that he pulled the plug on his December 4 Beacon Theater performance.

"Unfortunately I will not be performing in NYC this time around," said Stevens. "My fans will understand and I thank them for informing me about the extortionate tickets prices already being listed on some websites."

One ticket reseller was found by AOL News to be selling tickets for as much as $11,000 for the Beacon Theater show. The face value for those seats was $190, according to the concert's now-deleted Ticketmaster page.

The tickets were slated to go on sale Wednesday through an pre-sale in which fans who bought the Wild World singer's latest album online were granted a code to buy them before the general public. Philadelphia fans will now have that option instead of New Yorkers.

"I have been a longtime supporter of paperless tickets to my shows worldwide and avoiding scalpers," he continued. "Unfortunately, NY has a state law that requires all tickets sold for shows in NYC to be paper, enabling them to be bought and sold at inflated prices."

Stevens apologized for the change in plans but claimed to "hope to find an opportunity that aligns with my support of this issue in the near future, God willing."

The Moonshadow singer emerged to perform at this year's Rock n Roll Hall of Fame ceremony after decades of self-imposed exile in England following his 1976 conversion to Islam.

He estimated in a 2007 New York Times interview to have been earning about $1.5 million dollars-per-year from music royalties for the past four decades despite not performing or releasing any new material until 2003.

The tour kicks off December 1 in Toronto. The Peace Train also stops in Boston, Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Cat Stevens Announces First U.S. Concert Tour Since 1976
Cat Stevens Announces First U.S. Concert Tour Since 1976

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