Sir Tom Jones becomes oldest man to top UK album chart

Sir Tom Jones celebrates his fourth number one album

image copyrightOfficialCharts.com

Sir Tom Jones has become the oldest man to top the UK album chart, after his new record Surrounded By Time went straight in at number one.

The 80-year-old Welshman has overtaken Bob Dylan, who topped the chart last June aged 79 with Rough and Rowdy Ways.

The late Dame Vera Lynn holds the overall record after her 2009 greatest hits collection went to number one when the Forces’ Sweetheart was 92.

“I am thrilled beyond words,” Sir Tom told the Official Charts Company.

Setting a new chart record, he said, was “tremendous, just unbelievable”.

“It’s wonderful that the public has allowed me to be musically expressive at my time of life and have shown their support,” he added. “I am forever grateful.”

His fourth number one album – and his first since 1999’s Reload – knocked last week’s chart-topper, Californian Soil by London Grammar, off the top spot.

Earlier this month, the singer told the BBC’s Mark Savage how he kept his vocals in such good shape.

“It’s luck. It’s a God-given gift,” he said, before conceding that cutting back his alcohol intake and working out every day might have helped too.

“I’ve got an exercise bike in my bedroom. And I’ve got this inversion table, where I hang upside down for about five minutes every day. It gets the blood rushing to your head, which is great, and it elongates your spine as well – so if you’ve got any problems with your back, I highly recommend it.

“So I might be old myself, but my voice is still young.”

His latest record finds him once again re-interpreting some old favourites – from weather-worn ballads like The Windmills of Your Mind, which won the Oscar for Best Song in 1969; to more obscure choices, like Terry Callier’s nine-minute tale of rebirth and redemption, Lazarus Man.

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