Location South Africa. Green pin on the map.

DNA Tests tell an Ancestral Story

Tom Jones has announced he’s wondered all his life if he’s “part black,” and is going to seek out a DNA test to satisfy his curiosity. There are many tests on the market today that will tell a person if they have ancestors in population groups that include Sub Saharan Africa.

Thomas Jones Woodward was bon in South Wales, England. Now 75, he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2006. His musical career flourished in the 1960’s, including decades of performances in Las Vegas. His shows at Caesars Palace were known to include women throwing undergarments on stage—along with hotel keys!

Jones’s singing style developed from American soul music, with early influences from R&B and blues singers. He has always been perceived as having black roots. “A lot of people still think I am 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.

This wouldn’t be the first DNA test for Tom Jones. Although married since 1957, at the height of his fame, Jones’s philandering was legendary. One affair resulted in the birth of a son after a brief relationship with model Katherine Berkery. A legal battle ensued, and DNA testing was included. In 1989 a U.S. court ruled that Jones was the boy’s father.

This time around, the “black heritage” test Jones is seeking falls into the “ancestry” category. There are a few labs that offer the testing, and look at a person’s heritage while man lived in clusters around the world. In our test, there are four distinct population groups: European, Indigenous American, East Asian, and Sub Saharan Africa. Each are represented by a percentage in a DNA Origins report.

We’ll keep a close eye on what Mr. Jones discovers. Many people find that their origins are exactly as expected, but it’s not unusual for people to unlock unexpected family revelations!