It’s not unusual that Sir Tom Jones’s friendship with Elvis has become a topic for many recent interviews. What is unusual are the stories Jones tells when reminiscing about his late friend. Keep reading for a look behind this unlikely friendship.
Imagine a scene where Tom Jones is in the shower and Elvis is singing to him over the door. Don’t believe it? Okay. Try imagining Tom Jones standing there while needs Elvis needs help putting back on a pair of leather pants in the heat of Las Vegas. Hard to imagine that too? Well, believe it.
These stories, and more, were recounted in an interview with Tom Jones where he spoke about their close friendship.
Tom Jones Meets Elvis Presley
Okay, but I would totally watch that movie. Elvis and Tom Jones first met in 1965 when they were both in Los Angeles. “He started walking toward me singing my song ‘With These Hands.’ I thought, ‘My God if the boys back home could see me now.” Even Sir Tom Jones was star-struck by Elvis Presley – I mean, who wouldn’t be?!
Sir Tom Jones started out singing in pubs while living in Wales and often those songs were covers of Elvis’s songs. Meeting Elvis was a big deal to Tom Jones. Tom Jones’s friendship with Elvis grew as they talked about their love of gospel music.
“Elvis Presley was really a gospel singer, and he heard that in me. In Vegas, we would be up at night singing gospel songs.” – Sir Tom Jones, 2021
Tom Jones’s Friendship With Elvis Bonded By Talent and Mutual Respect
It is no wonder why Elvis and Tom became such good friends. It took a lot to impress Elvis, but Tom Jones had the talent to do just that.
Elvis once asked Tom, “How the hell do you sing like that?” To which Tom responded, “Listening to you, for one thing.” Tom Jone’s friendship with Elvis was built on mutual respect for their talent but grew as the two really got to know one another.
It is said that Elvis would perform many of Tom Jones’s hits during his stage performances including, “Delilah.” I scoured the internet trying to find if this was recorded anywhere and sadly came up short. If anyone out there has this, please send it my way!
It took a lot for Elvis to trust anyone because it always seemed like someone wanted something from him, but not Tom Jones.
“Elvis was always cautious about letting people get close to him. He was inspired by Tom and they became very good friends.” – Jerry Schilling
Tom Jones’s friendship with Elvis lasted through the years. They were an unlikely duo that managed to remain friends in the midst of a lot of chaos.
Until next time,
TCB and TCE,