Over the Top and Back: The Autobiography
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
'For a lot of years, I've answered a lot of questions, but have never told my story before.'
Across six decades, Sir Tom Jones has maintained a vital career in a risky, unstable business notorious for the short lives of its artists. With a drive that comes from nothing but the love for what he does, he breaks through and then wrestles with the vagaries of the music industry, the nature of success and its inevitable consequences. Having recorded an expansive body of work and performed with fellow artists from across the spectrum and across every popular music genre, from rock, pop and dance to country, blues and soul, the one constant throughout has been his unique musical gifts and unmistakable voice.
But how did a boy from a Welsh coal-mining family attain success across the globe? And how has he survived the twists and turns of fame and fortune to not only stay exciting, but actually become more credible and interesting with age? In this, his first ever autobiography, Tom revisits his past and tells the tale of his journey from wartime Pontypridd to LA and beyond. He reveals the stories behind the ups and downs of his fascinating and remarkable life, from the early heydays to the subsequent fallow years to his later period of artistic renaissance.
It's the story nobody else knows or understands, told by the man who lived it, and written the only way he knows how: simply and from the heart. Raw, honest, funny and powerful, this is a memoir like no other from one of the world's greatest ever singing talents.
This is Tom Jones and Over the Top and Back is his story.
liked that, though it frustrated the hell out of me, too. Forcefully separated from her, my crush on this girl that I barely knew only deepened, became a constant ache. I couldn’t put a number on the hours of my confinement that I spent thinking about Melinda. I used to wonder what she might be doing, worry that she would take up with some other boy and that I was up there missing my chance. All the agony of those early yearnings was compounded by the fact that I was locked away from her, unable
that little myth. Still, I definitely got down during those months—down low. There were nights I lay in the flat, listening to the other guys snoring, thinking about my wife and son and wondering, “Is this right?” You have to provide. That’s what I was raised to believe: the man of the house provides. That was the most painful aspect of this phase. I didn’t mind getting along on cheap dishes from Pete’s café, hoarding a few pennies for beer at the weekend. I could do all that. It didn’t bother
songs are there because I love them equally and because I choose to do them. But a sense of confusion is already in evidence. What’s my line here? Rocker? Pop star? Variety show crooner and Palladium shoo-in? I seem to be in some place where those things all overlap and blur. And who’s this guy on the album’s sleeve, in a red shirt with the collar up and belted jeans, the sideburns and black curls still looking pretty rock’n’roll? Yet he’s leaning against a birch tree in a wood, with a stalk of
the place still seems to leap with charisma to me. There’s a bit of an edge to it, a touch of sleaze and danger among the glitz. Linda and I do the shows. We see Kay Starr, who recorded “Wheel of Fortune” and “Come On-a My House.” I want to see Frank Sinatra, but he’s not in town, so we go to see Mel Torme instead—which isn’t exactly a fair exchange, to my mind, because I was never a big fan. However, he knows that we’re in the house, and I can’t pretend I don’t get a kick out of it, partway
And this kid has just walked in off the street! He’d been playing his songs around the place, and nobody wanted anything to do with them. No manager, no publisher, no record company. I don’t know how Gordon kept his jaw off the floor. Gordon took him in—put him up at the house, gave him a new name, signed him into the whole MAM deal. This, too, would go tits up eventually, but it was all roses at first. The artist now known as Gilbert O’Sullivan hit it—went global with his first record, which