Short, sweet life of the Welsh singing sex-symbol--whose smashing success is even greater in the States than back home in...

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TOM JONES: The Boy From Nowhere

Short, sweet life of the Welsh singing sex-symbol--whose smashing success is even greater in the States than back home in the British Isles. Son of a coal miner, Jones (born Woodward) was raised among singing folk and as a child stood out even among the exceptional. There were rewards as a singing child, which made him sing all the harder, more often and willingly. He sang for small pay in local pubs in his teens, then joined a group and branched out into neighboring towns. Famed but low-paid in Wales, he at last abandoned factory work and went with the group to London. There, they had little success until burgeoning producer Gordon Mills decided to manage and publicize him, emphasizing Woodward's pelvic gyrations and renaming him after the then-hit movie. ""It's Not Unusual"" was an instant hit, and Jones has ridden a skyrocket ever since. Mills meanwhile formed a management company with Jones as star, broadened to include a young singer memorably renamed Englebert Humperdinck, and then another renamed Gilbert O'Sullivan, both of whom became Mills' with big hits. Macfarlane, from Jones' neck of Wales, is light on the gossip--since Jones is still married to his childhood sweetheart, Linda, whom he married under the gun at 16. Jones' biggest fandom arose when middle-aged ladies began throwing their panties at him during performances, sometimes in blizzards, all of which Jones loves--even though the lady fans are often unbearable nuisances offstage. A chatty little piece of fluff you can well live without--unless you're a panty-thrower.

Pub Date: Jan. 10, 1988

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 1988