Jones on Elvis
continued to play the legendary Copa, and of course Vegas, where
he befriended Sinatra and Elvis and straddled the Strip as an
equal colossus. And the mafia loved him, which, let's face it,
is a lot better than the alternative.
he reaches pensionable age, Tom Jones tells Bob Guccione
Jnr about the early days in south Wales, the nights
with Elvis and Frank. And the legendary sparkle in his
played the Ed Sullivan Show and was told, nine years
after Elvis was filmed from only the waist up, that
if he did his by-now "f" trademark snake-hips
shake when singing, the camera would come off him.
God, they always said, 'Hey, Tommy, you're a man's man. Fuckin'
beauuutiful!'" In Vegas, Jones and Sinatra played Caesar's
Palace, and drew a lot of high rollers, and the mob.
told me himself, 'You know we got things wrapped up. When
we're not here, they can shoot cannons off the stage and it
won't fucking hit anybody.' He'd tell me, 'You know who is
in the audience?' and I'd say, 'Oh, I see 'em,' and he'd say,
'They love you. They've taken to you like you're me.' I always
thought I was closer to Elvis Presley, but in that Vegas thing,
I was closer to Sinatra in terms of the people we were drawing."
were great friends too, and often sang together but
only in private, just the two of them playing guitars
and singing their favourite songs.
when Jones was touring Hawaii, Elvis, there on vacation,
invited him over to his house. Elvis thought Tom was
the greatest singer in the world, and would sometimes
walk out on stage (see photo above) when Jones was performing
and say exactly that to the crowd.
Tom arrived, Elvis was missing. He'd realised he didn't have
any guitars at the house and had gone out to buy two, walking
into the first instrument store he found and announcing to
the dumbstruck shop assistant:
Jones is coming to my house today and I need two guitars."
told me a story about being invited to Elvis's suite one day
in Vegas. He walked in to find the King on an exercise bike,
one that had the moving handlebars you're supposed to hold
to work out your upper body at the same time. Elvis, in a
tracksuit, was leaning back, pedalling, the handlebars moving
in and out on their own, with a phone in one hand and a devilled
egg in the other, a tray of devilled eggs balanced on his
large belly and bits of egg between his fingers where he'd
mushed them while eating.
you exercise, Tom?" he asked. "Yeah, I do Elvis, every day"
replied Tom. "Me too," said Elvis.
(News, Source: Sanja Meegin)