Tom Jones OAP

Debbie & I have seen Tom Jones live quite a number of times, so let me see if I can piece together a historical list…

London Apollo theatre in Hammersmith 17th December 1994 was the first time.  My lasting memory was of 2 or 3 Welsh “ladies” who looked like “mutton dressed as lamb” in stockings and suspenders.

We think the original date was postponed as we had arrived at the Apollo and found ourselves hugely disappointed.  Apparently he was double booked and attended the MTV awards in Germany, but the tickets were honoured for this date.

We sat front row in the circle and Tom started the second session after the interval with the Thunderball James Bond theme song, the only time we’ve seen him sing it live as it is a very demanding song vocally I suspect, mind you he was only 54 then…..

The next time was at Royal Albert Hall, London on Friday the 2nd April 2004 for the Teenage Cancer Trust 2004 with Jools Holland.  Our daughter Emma and her friend Jennifer came with us and we had a great time.

Along with 20,000 other fans we saw in open air Tom Jones in Ponty Park on Saturday 28th May 2005 in Ynysangharad War Memorial Park, Pontypridd, South Wales.  The concert was to mark Tom’s 65th birthday the following week as he was born there and to celebrate his 40 year career.  Our friends Rose and Paul put us up at their home in Nelson and they very kindly dropped us off  for the start and picked us up at the close.

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Katherine Jenkins came on as a surprise guest to sing happy birthday to him.  When he sang the Green Green Grass at home it looked like his was looking up to the house he lived in at 44 Laura Street – which we’ve visited.

Next was the rather exclusive venue at Hampton Court Palace on Wednesday, 20th June 2007.  Our son Alex dropped us off in his car and we had a bring your own picnic (including lots of wine from memory) beneath the ornamental trees.  This proved very useful later when the rain came and I have to admit we did smile secretly at the posh people in their glad rags arriving for the catered food, especially the women in their high heels sinking into the grass.

In fact this concert was a little snooty, we were practically the only members of the audience to get up and dance and half way through the concert I got a surprise text from my CIO client from General Dynamics UK asking if that was me bumping and grinding!  It was Simon & his future wife Nikki who were enjoying corporate hospitality behind us!  We can’t have put them off too much though as later they invited us to their wedding.

Cardiff International Arena Friday 9th October 2009 – I’ve only ever had one endorsement on my driving licence and that was for speeding in the Severn bridge toll area going into Wales for this Tom Jones concert, maybe that’s why we’ve never seen him since!

He’s not called “the voice” without reason, his vocal range both low and high is amazing, the fact that he’s from the Welsh valleys only increases his appeal to the both of us – we even have a limited edition “Grogg” of him!  In fact when we get to High Willows I’ll add a picture of it to this post!

Tom Jones OAP

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