David Hasselhoff launched his new album This Time Around in London on Monday.

The new recording, mainly containing covers of show tunes, is the 59-year-old’s seventeenth studio album to date over a music career that has spanned more than two decades.  It is the follow-up to A Real Good Feeling, which was released in 2011.

“It’s really the big, big sound,” Hasselhoff said.  “The sound that when I was eight years old, I knew I wanted to go to Broadway.  I never thought I would be in the pop world or in television or film. I knew I wanted Broadway.”

Hasselhoff greeted fans at a music store on London’s Oxford Street and signed copies of the record alongside his girlfriend of almost a year, 32-year-old Hayley Roberts, whom he met while working as a judge on Simon Cowell’s British television show Britain’s Got Talent.

Despite the obvious age gap, he said the relationship “seems to have worked out” and described the circumstances of their meeting in Cardiff, Wales.

“As I was walking to my hotel room I saw her and her sister and I said ‘wow’ and something immediately kind of turned over in my brain that this one’s really magic and there’s just something really magical about her,” he said

“It’s kind of hard to explain to someone when you first meet them.  They think you’re full of it.  It’s especially hard when you’re me because they think ‘Oh yeah you’re a celebrity’ and just giving them a line.  But I was pretty sincere that night, and I left and drove halfway home and said ‘I gotta go back and tell this person how I feel’, knowing there was no chance because of the age difference and she’s beautiful, I’m sure she had a boyfriend, but it seems to have worked out.”

Best known as an actor in the popular TV series Knight Rider and Baywatch, Hasselhoff insisted he had not fallen out with Simon Cowell after his contract was not renewed to appear on Britain’s Got Talent.

“I signed for a year.  When I left Simon the last thing he said was ‘Darling you’re doing a fantastic job – you’re coming back’ and I said ‘You call me I’ll be there’, gave him a hug and kiss on the cheek and left,” he said.  “We’re friends — it’s show business.  It was a one year deal. No matter what was said in the press or what you read, they never make up their minds until the day before.”

He will also be starring in his own show called An Evening With David Hasselhoff.  In Germany, his tour sells out arenas but in the UK David is performing just one night — at London’s IndigO2 on March 2 — although he is hoping to announce a new tour soon.

He admits the number of costume changes on his shows have prompted comparisons with another singing diva.

“They called me the next Cher because I had this huge following in Germany and the guys on stage got more applause than the girls and we went ‘What’s going on?’ And then they compared me to Cher because I changed eleven times in the show and so did she.  But I don’t think I’ll have as much surgery as Cher but I’ll be around as long as she will,” he said.