Sir Tom Jones has said he was warned early in his career that he would not succeed because he was “too macho” and had curly hair.
The Sex Bomb singer has enjoyed decades in the limelight.
But the 80-year-old told The Zoe Ball Breakfast Show on Radio 2: “I’ve always been pushing, since I came from Wales to London.
“I was always getting knocked back. Somebody was saying something like ‘Curly hair doesn’t work any more… and you’re a bit too macho.’
“I said ‘Sorry about that but that’s the way I am’.”
He added: “They try to change you and mould you and get you to do what’s going on at that time.
“They said that the Elvis Presley style has gone. I said ‘Not in my mind, not in my heart!’
“I was up against it with the way I looked, I had a broken nose…”
He said he told music bigwigs: “I was doing great in Wales so I can’t see a big difference between Wales and England. We all speak English, so what’s the big deal?”
The Voice coach said new single No Hole In My Head resonates with his experience.
“This song is telling you that – ‘Don’t try to put things in my head, there’s no hole in my head, don’t try to fill it up with stuff that you want me to do’.”
Sir Tom recently said he has had the coronavirus vaccine.
“That’s one good thing about being 80 – you’re first in line for the jab,” he told presenter Jools Holland.
“It was fine, it was like getting the flu jab.”