Tom Jones at the Union Chapel

Saw Tom Jones last week at the beautiful Union Chapel in Islington. He played the Praise and Blame album, the whole Praise and Blame album, and nothing but the Praise and Blame album. Superb, and it sounded better, to me at least, swirling and echoing in the chapel, than the album. An odd gig, though. The man who could sell out the O2 playing to a few hundred in a folk music venue. No T-shirts, no mugs, no posters, and not even the CD on sale. Supported by an interesting young band fronted by someone who mumbled so much (speak up, son) I had to ask the staff who they were. (Tinashe – well worth a listen).

But back to Tom. Never seen him before. Well, the closest I’ve been to Vegas is Wendover, Nevada (much recommended if you are in the area.) But, there he was, channelling the deep, dark, troubled soul of Johnny Cash, albeit with a mischievous glint in his eye. Fabulous voice still, every note sung like he meant it. It was a privilege to be there and I’ll remember it for a long, long time.

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