Curly headed, charismatic, and slightly campy Tom Jones with his trademark booming baritone is best known as a pop singer/nightclub act from the '60s on, but he has also appeared in a few films where he generally good-naturedly parodies himself. He was born Thomas Jones Woodward in Pontypridd, Wales. He became a singer at age 23, billing himself as Tommy Scott and singing with the Senators. He went solo the following year and had a brief record contract, returned to sing in Wales, and by the end of the year he changed his name to Tom Jones with the help of singer-turned-manager Gordon Mills who got him a contract with Decca. Jones had his first hit in 1965 with "It's Not Unusual." His flamboyance and knock-em-dead sex appeal helped make him a major star with four more hits that year. In 1969, he starred in his own television variety show This Is Tom Jones. It was alternately filmed in both London and Hollywood. After the show ended in 1971, he basically left recording in favor of a career as a Las Vegas nightclub singer. He began his sporadic film career in the early '70s. In the early '80s, Jones began recording again and touring. He continues to occasionally appear in feature films and on television.
Biography by Sandra Brennan
- Won the Grammy Award for Best New Artist in 1966.
- Received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1989.
- Was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1999.
- Performed on New Year's Eve at the 2000 millenium celebrations in Washington D.C.
- Won the Brit Award for Outstanding Contribution to Music in 2003.
- Celebrated his 65th birthday in 2005 by performing in his home town, Pontypridd, for the first time since 1964.
- Was knighted in 2006 by Elizabeth II for his services to music.
- Covered "Islands in the Stream" with Ruth Jones, Rob Brydon and Robin Gibb in aid of Comic Relief in 2009.
- Performed at the Help for Heroes charity concert in Twickenham in 2010.
- Won the first series of The Voice UK with his act Leanne Mitchell in 2012.
- Performed with Rob Brydon at the SSE Arena in Wembley for BBC's Children in Need in 2015.