A Drunken Poet's Dream

Over the Top and Back: The Autobiography

It's not unusual that Tom Jones doesn't kiss and tell

A Drunken Poet's Dream

For a singer keenly associated with panties thrown onstage, Tom Jones' autobiography is surprisingly chaste. The 75-year-old Welshman married at age 16 when his wife became pregnant with their only child, and they've been together ever since. Not to say Sir Tom avoided his station's carnal pleasures. Accounts indicate he frequently indulged, but he doesn't kiss and tell here. Call it a mark of gentlemanly discretion. Then again, his wife chinned him last time his infidelities made press. Fortunately, Jones' tale transcends salacity, his pub-friendly writer's voice capturing the conflict of having a slim shot at success while supporting a family in a small town. Manager Gordon Mills ultimately mortgages his future on Jones' voice and the two hit it big with 1965's "It's Not Unusual." Jones remains loyal – to a fault, careerwise – until Mills' death in 1986, after which the singer (under his son's management) enjoys a renaissance that continues today.


Over the Top and Back: The Autobiography

by Tom Jones
Blue Rider Press, 432 pp., $26.95

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 36 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Tom Jones
Try To Remember
Try To Remember
How two kids from UT changed the course of the American musical

Robert Faires, Oct. 15, 2010

More Music Reviews
Jimmy Buffett: A Good Life All the Way
Jimmy Buffett: A Good Life All the Way
The Parrothead behind the empire

Doug Freeman, July 21, 2017

All Over the Map, True Heroes of Texas Music
All Over the Map, True Heroes of Texas Music

Kevin Curtin, June 16, 2017

More by Greg Beets
SXSW Music Interview: Dawg Yawp
SXSW Music Interview: Dawg Yawp
Where sitar meets American folk song

March 16, 2018

Texas Platters
Uranium Savages
Clown Juice (Record Review)

Feb. 9, 2018

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Tom Jones, Gift Guide 2015

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

Updates for SXSW 2018

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle