Yusuf (Islam) -- aka Cat Stevens -- is headed into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in April, but he's also been logging studio time during the past year.
Yusuf tells us that he's been working on a follow-up to 2009's "Roadsinger," and its direction may surprise some people:
"I'm actually in the process of putting an album together. I’ve laid down a lot of tracks and just deciding what ones to finish, and I'm having a great time doing it... It's kind of bluesy because that's an area of my musical background and influence which has never really revealed itself to many people. It's something I wanted to do. Going back to the 60s, all of Britain was enamored with what was happening in the blues world, and I was one of those who was an avid fan of R&B, so it's kind of like me wanting to do this thing, and I've always wanted to do it, so it's a little bit I would say, bluesy."
Yusuf says he hopes to complete the album soon and have it ready for release during 2013.
Meanwhile, the iconic singer-songwriter -- who was previously nominated for the Rock Hall in 2006 -- says he's pleased to be part of the class of 2014:
"It was a big surprise. I was taken aback 'cause I was kind of used to, if you like, a kind of status of detachment from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. After I'd been nominated so many times, and -- well, maybe it was only once, I'm not sure -- Anyway, it felt like a long time since I was eligible. But when the news came through I was really, really, really very pleased, very pleased and happy also for many of my fans who had been working so hard and trying to get me inducted."
The induction ceremony takes place April 10 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn and will be filmed by HBO for broadcast in May.