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London (AFP) - After being told that he is "just passing as white", Welsh crooner Tom Jones says he is ready to take a DNA test to find out once and for all if he has black ancestry.
The star, whose hits include "It's Not Unusual", "Delilah" and "Sex Bomb", is often thought to have black heritage for his booming baritone voice, tight curly hair and olive complexion.
"A lot of people still think Iâm black. When I first came to America, people who had heard me sing on the radio would be surprised that I was white when they saw me," Jones was quoted as saying by the Times.
"When I was born, my mother came out in big dark patches all over her body. They asked if she had any black blood and she said she didnât know. Iâm going to get my DNA tested. I want to find out," he said.
DNA tests claiming to track ancestral lineage are now easily accessible and affordable.
The hip-swivelling singer has enjoyed a long career as a sex symbol but now bemoans feeling objectified, saying he can "never predict when the knickers are going to get thrown".
Born Thomas Jones Woodward in South Wales to a coal-mining family, the 75-year-old singer discovered his musical talent as a child, his career spanning more than half a century with hundreds of records to his name.
He was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2006.