Gilbert O'Sullivan's Not Getting Any Younger...but his face and trademark frizzy perm haven't aged a day
Source: Daily Mail Online
Writer: Liz Thomas
Date: 31 May 2008
It is almost 40 years since he shot to stardom but it seems Gilbert O'Sullivan has barely aged a day.
The 61 year-old star, who kicked off his European tour this month, appeared almost unchanged from his seventies heyday right down to his trademark frizzy perm.
After years in the musical wilderness O'Sullivan is enjoying something of a renaissance at the moment.
Now and then: O'Sullivan in his heyday (right) and on stage in Amsterdam last night
He has played sell out concerts in Amsterdam, Zurich and Paris and will be touring the UK later this year. The singer-songwriter is even performing at the Glastonbury Festival next month.
O'Sullivan made his name after teaming up with Tom Jones' manager Gordon Mills and had hits in the early seventies with ballads such as Nothing Rhymed, Alone Again (Naturally), which spent six weeks at No. 1 in the UK and was a hit in the US, and Clair.
Famed for his unusual image which included a cloth cap and short trousers, the Irish born musician's popularity rivalled that of Rod Stewart and Elton John in the early seventies.
His career faltered in the eighties as he was caught up in legal wrangles against his former manager Mills after it emerged that O'Sullivan had received only £500,000 of the £14 million fortune netted by his records.
He later took US rapper Biz Markie, who used a sample of Alone Again (Naturally) on a record without his permission, to court. Both cases were settled in his favour.
Then: Gilbert in his hit-studded heyday in the Seventies
After the court cases he became a virtual recluse living with his wife and two daughters first in Ireland and then in Jersey, but continued to write music.
More recently he has voiced his frustration that his music legacy and newer output had been ignored by the media and music critics.
In an interview last year launching his latest album he said: "'What I can't understand is why people still won't give me the credibility that I look for. If Mojo or any other of those magazines would give me the credit for only ever performing my own songs rather than someone like Rod Stewart singing other people's songs looking for success.
"I still sit in my room writing songs and I hope against hope that people will give me the credit for that. When the magazines talk about artists they talk about the Paul McCartneys, the Paul Simons, they never talk about me. So their readers and contemporary artists are never going to check me out because they're not reading about me. That's what I have to overcome but it won't stop me writing [songs]."