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Jazz - Released October 1, 2014 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Pop - Released January 1, 2013 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

Booklet Distinctions Sélection JAZZ NEWS
Britain's Jamie Cullum's sixth studio album, 2013's Momentum, finds the jazz-influenced singer/songwriter flexing his creative muscles on a stylistically varied set. Working with a variety of instruments from vintage keyboards to electronic samples and beats, Cullum clearly used this project to expand his sonic palette. Which isn't to say that the singer has completely abandoned his usual vocals-and-piano format. On the contrary, most of the songs here are still rooted in Cullum singing and accompanying himself on piano, with key instrumental flourishes and studio reworkings added as a means of highlighting his vocal melodies, most of which he wrote himself. Cullum displays his considerable gift for pop songcraft with particular skill on such songs as the bombastic "Edge of Something," the torchy '60s soul dance number "When I Get Famous," and the introspective, folk-inflected composition "Get a Hold of Yourself." However, while Momentum features a number of heartfelt original melodic pop songs, it also delivers a few surprisingly reworked jazz standards, such as the inspired downtempo reinvention of Cole Porter's "Love for Sale" featuring rapper Roots Manuva. Similarly, Cullum's deeply ruminative, widescreen take on "Pure Imagination" is an album standout. Although Cullum got his start during the jazz singer boom of the early 2000s, with Momentum he's proven once again to be a musically eclectic songwriter with more than enough creative speed to keep him going for years to come. © Matt Collar /TiVo
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Jazz - Released November 8, 2019 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Eight albums already! About to turn forty, this gifted Englishman is back with Taller. The singer-songwriter from Essex relies on his faithful arranger and multi-instrumentalist Troy Miller to produce an opus that’s as concise as it is eclectic, clocking in at less than 40 minutes in length. In it, Cullum questions the responsibility of a father and an artist in our modern society. “Are you a man before your father dies?” / “But what’s a man these days? I hear you cry” / “And are we raising up our children right” on the piano/vocal song The Age Of Anxiety. The British artist showcases his outstanding versatility with gospel choirs in Mankindou Monster, stylish jazz in You Can’t Hide Away From Love, the funky Usher elevated by Tom Richards’ tenor saxophone, or adorned pop in Life Is Grey. This album’s main strength is its perfect balance, achieved through a lush yet never overcrowded orchestration of strings, winds, Hammond organ, and above all vocals – especially Cullum’s with his incredible range, but also female choirs. Perfect. © Charlotte Saintoin/Qobuz
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Pop - Released December 25, 2018 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

The fact that he knows how to sing almost everything is no big surprise to anyone. And it’s often when he covers another artists' material that Jamie Cullum shines the most. In the great tradition of the great voices of jazz history, the Brit has put together a fairly eclectic repertoire of songs ranging from Mariah Carey to Frank Ocean, Justin Bieber, Lauryn Hill and The Weeknd! “I love learning other people’s songs”, Cullum stated. “It teaches me a lot about writing, which is a big source of inspiration especially when I’m working on a new album, which is exactly what I’m doing at the minute. I strongly believe in the title of writer Austin Kleon’s book: “Voler comme un artiste”. Besides, I often find my best ideas when I’m in someone else’s shoes.” The interest of this collection of covers also comes from the rather clean and sober packaging made by Jamie Cullum himself. No shiny production or sound effects, no, just the deep, elastic voice of a master of groove and swing who is just as in touch with tradition as he is with his own time. © Max Dembo/Qobuz
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Jazz - Released January 1, 2004 | Decca (UMO)

Already a sensation in his native England, 22-year-old piano man Jamie Cullum comes off like a hip amalgamation of Harry Connick, Jr. and Randy Newman on his sophomore effort, Twentysomething. As with Blue Note's crossover wunderkind Norah Jones, Cullum works best when he's not trying too hard to please hardcore jazz aficionados, but it's not too difficult to imagine his bonus-track version of Pharrell Williams' "Frontin'" turning some jazz fans onto the Neptunes. Showcasing Cullum's sardonic wit and lounge-savvy attitude, the album deftly flows from singer/songwriter love songs to jazzy barroom romps and reappropriated modern rock tunes. Cullum has a warm voice with a slight rasp that retains a bit of his Brit accent even though his influences -- Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra, Tom Waits -- are resolutely American. Truthfully, Cullum isn't the most accomplished vocalist and his piano chops are pleasant at best -- Oscar Peterson he ain't. That said, he's still a kick. What he lacks in technique he makes up for in swagger and smarts as many of his original compositions reveal. On the swinging and wickedly humorous title track -- a take on postgraduate slackerdom -- Cullum sardonically laments, "After years of expensive education, a car full of books and anticipation, I'm an expert on Shakespeare and that's a hell of a lot but the world don't need scholars as much as I thought." It's a timely statement in our overeducated, underemployed "dot-bomb" economy and deftly posits Cullum as a jazz singer as much of as for his generation. Also compelling are his choices of cover tunes, as he is able to imprint his own persona on the songs while magnifying what made them brilliant to begin with. To these ends, Jeff Buckley's "Lover, You Should've Come Over" gets a gut-wrenchingly minimalist treatment and Radiohead's "High and Dry" comes off as the best Bruce Hornsby song you've never heard. Conversely, Cullum treats jazz standards as modern pop tunes, reworking them into contemporary styles that are neither cynical nor awkward. In fact, his atmospheric, '70s AM pop take on "Singin' in the Rain," replete with string backgrounds and Cullum's percolating Rhodes keyboard, is one of the most appealing cuts on the album, lending the Great American Songbook warhorse an air of virginity. © Matt Collar /TiVo
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Pop - Released November 8, 2019 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Jazz - Released November 8, 2019 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2006 | Candid Productions

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Pop - Released November 9, 2009 | Decca (UMO)

Jamie Cullum tipped too heavily toward coffeehouse electronica on his fourth album, Catching Tales, obscuring his charms as both a jazzy pianist and a soft rock crooner, so he wisely scales back to his strengths on The Pursuit. Despite a brassy opening cover of Cole Porter’s “Just One of Those Things,” The Pursuit is hardly a retreat to Harry Connick, Jr. territory. Cullum anchors himself within melodic soft rock, providing a base for incorporating both his jazz and persistent electronica infatuations. Since The Pursuit is produced as a pop album, those electronica flourishes wind up seeming seamless, underscoring what Cullum does best: unabashedly mainstream adult pop, whether it’s the insistent rush of “Mixtape” or the wonderful ‘70s throwback “I’m All Over It.” © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Jazz - Released January 1, 2005 | Decca (UMO)

British pianist/vocalist Jamie Cullum's previous effort, Twentysomething, was an uncomplicated mix of piano-driven melodic pop with a jazzy twist and some reworked jazz standards. 2005's Catching Tales follows a similar format but falls short of its predecessor's simple approach by muddying up the production with dated electronic flourishes. Which isn't to say it's a bad album. On the contrary, despite some ill-advised attempts at would-be-hip DJ-style tracks, Catching Tales features more of Cullum's superb songwriting. Essentially a singer/songwriter in the tradition of such icons as Billy Joel and Randy Newman, Cullum is at his best when performing simple melodic songs with some jazz harmony that make the most of his burnished croon and verbal wit. To these ends, the beautifully melancholy "London Skies" brings to mind Joe Jackson covering a Radiohead song. Similarly, the romantic and folky "Photograph" reveals the often sardonically snotty Cullum to be a top-notch balladeer. It's also at these soft rock moments, when he isn't attempting to gun down the jazz canon, that Cullum's improvisation sounds the best. Also impressive is his mid-tempo swing-cum-soul track "Nothing I Do," which marries Harry Connick, Jr.'s neo-croon to Stevie Wonder's R&B harmonies. If Cullum's only attempt at contemporary hipness was his inspired cover version of the Doves' "Catch the Sun," the album would be a rousing success. Unfortunately though, Cullum's expansive vision finds him collaborating with Dan the Automator on the leadoff track, "Get Your Way." What may have been an attempt to try something new ultimately sounds more like early-'90s hip-hop jazz à la Digable Planets replete with scratchy vinyl record sound and canned beat. Also disappointing is his reworking of the Harry Warren classic "I Only Have Eyes for You," which, while an attempt at a Massive Attack-style trip-hop track, sounds more like U2's equally atrocious 1990 Cole Porter redo "Night and Day." However, when Cullum sticks to his piano and a good melody Catching Tales actually bests Twentysomething and easily shakes the "new-jazz" tag he has been working against. © Matt Collar /TiVo
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Jazz - Released January 1, 2003 | Decca (UMO)

Already a sensation in his native England, 22-year-old piano man Jamie Cullum comes off like a hip amalgamation of Harry Connick, Jr. and Randy Newman on his sophomore effort, Twentysomething. As with Blue Note's crossover wunderkind Norah Jones, Cullum works best when he's not trying too hard to please hardcore jazz aficionados, but it's not too difficult to imagine his bonus-track version of Pharrell Williams' "Frontin'" turning some jazz fans onto the Neptunes. Showcasing Cullum's sardonic wit and lounge-savvy attitude, the album deftly flows from singer/songwriter love songs to jazzy barroom romps and reappropriated modern rock tunes. Cullum has a warm voice with a slight rasp that retains a bit of his Brit accent even though his influences -- Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra, Tom Waits -- are resolutely American. Truthfully, Cullum isn't the most accomplished vocalist and his piano chops are pleasant at best -- Oscar Peterson he ain't. That said, he's still a kick. What he lacks in technique he makes up for in swagger and smarts as many of his original compositions reveal. On the swinging and wickedly humorous title track -- a take on postgraduate slackerdom -- Cullum sardonically laments, "After years of expensive education, a car full of books and anticipation, I'm an expert on Shakespeare and that's a hell of a lot but the world don't need scholars as much as I thought." It's a timely statement in our overeducated, underemployed "dot-bomb" economy and deftly posits Cullum as a jazz singer as much of as for his generation. Also compelling are his choices of cover tunes, as he is able to imprint his own persona on the songs while magnifying what made them brilliant to begin with. To these ends, Jeff Buckley's "Lover, You Should've Come Over" gets a gut-wrenchingly minimalist treatment and Radiohead's "High and Dry" comes off as the best Bruce Hornsby song you've never heard. Conversely, Cullum treats jazz standards as modern pop tunes, reworking them into contemporary styles that are neither cynical nor awkward. In fact, his atmospheric, '70s AM pop take on "Singin' in the Rain," replete with string backgrounds and Cullum's percolating Rhodes keyboard, is one of the most appealing cuts on the album, lending the Great American Songbook warhorse an air of virginity. © Matt Collar /TiVo
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Pop - Released November 8, 2019 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2004 | Decca (UMO)

Already a sensation in his native England, 22-year-old piano man Jamie Cullum comes off like a hip amalgamation of Harry Connick, Jr. and Randy Newman on his sophomore effort, Twentysomething. As with Blue Note's crossover wunderkind Norah Jones, Cullum works best when he's not trying too hard to please hardcore jazz aficionados, but it's not too difficult to imagine his bonus-track version of Pharrell Williams' "Frontin'" turning some jazz fans onto the Neptunes. Showcasing Cullum's sardonic wit and lounge-savvy attitude, the album deftly flows from singer/songwriter love songs to jazzy barroom romps and reappropriated modern rock tunes. Cullum has a warm voice with a slight rasp that retains a bit of his Brit accent even though his influences -- Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra, Tom Waits -- are resolutely American. Truthfully, Cullum isn't the most accomplished vocalist and his piano chops are pleasant at best -- Oscar Peterson he ain't. That said, he's still a kick. What he lacks in technique he makes up for in swagger and smarts as many of his original compositions reveal. On the swinging and wickedly humorous title track -- a take on postgraduate slackerdom -- Cullum sardonically laments, "After years of expensive education, a car full of books and anticipation, I'm an expert on Shakespeare and that's a hell of a lot but the world don't need scholars as much as I thought." It's a timely statement in our overeducated, underemployed "dot-bomb" economy and deftly posits Cullum as a jazz singer as much of as for his generation. Also compelling are his choices of cover tunes, as he is able to imprint his own persona on the songs while magnifying what made them brilliant to begin with. To these ends, Jeff Buckley's "Lover, You Should've Come Over" gets a gut-wrenchingly minimalist treatment and Radiohead's "High and Dry" comes off as the best Bruce Hornsby song you've never heard. Conversely, Cullum treats jazz standards as modern pop tunes, reworking them into contemporary styles that are neither cynical nor awkward. In fact, his atmospheric, '70s AM pop take on "Singin' in the Rain," replete with string backgrounds and Cullum's percolating Rhodes keyboard, is one of the most appealing cuts on the album, lending the Great American Songbook warhorse an air of virginity. © Matt Collar /TiVo
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Film Soundtracks - Released January 9, 2009 | New Line Records

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Jazz - Released July 16, 2020 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Jazz - Released November 8, 2019 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

Standing at roughly just over five feet, acclaimed singer and pianist Jamie Cullum has long suffered tiresome barbs regarding his stature. Those barbs unintentionally took on an added sting with Cullum's marriage to six-foot model and writer Sophie Dahl in 2010. None of this has anything to do with his music, except that as an insightful songwriter, he has often drawn inspiration from his own life, as he does on his eighth studio album, 2019's sophisticated and emotionally unguarded Taller. A reference to the height difference with Dahl, the album's title track is a soulful, old-school R&B groover in which Cullum transforms his literal desire to measure up to his wife into a metaphor for how falling in love can inspire you to be a better person. Showcasing Cullum's bright vocals framed by an earthy mix of strings and horns, the song sets the tone for the album's '70s singer/songwriter-influenced vibe. Cuts like the gospel-inflected "Mankind," the funky "Usher," and the minor-to-major key soul anthem "Monster" are all hooky, buoyant songs that bring to mind the classic AM pop style of Carole King, Elton John, and Billy Joel. As good as these robust productions are, Cullum is at his best when he keeps things pared down and jazzy, as on "You Can't Hide Away from Love," a poignant, deftly constructed ballad that could easily become a modern standard. Similarly, on "The Age of Anxiety," Cullum croons as if he's the last person at the bar, mulling over the future of the planet, concerns for his children, and his own middle-age unease as he finally returns to the comfort of his relationship, singing "Cause I hold onto you/And you hold onto me/A tiny victory in the age of anxiety." Taller is an album of both tiny victories and big anxieties that Cullum wraps in sweeping pop choruses, where the wryly intended puns are balanced by earnest, resonant emotion. © Matt Collar /TiVo
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Jazz - Released April 26, 2010 | Candid Productions Ltd.

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Jazz - Released January 1, 2005 | Decca (UMO)

British pianist/vocalist Jamie Cullum's previous effort, Twentysomething, was an uncomplicated mix of piano-driven melodic pop with a jazzy twist and some reworked jazz standards. 2005's Catching Tales follows a similar format but falls short of its predecessor's simple approach by muddying up the production with dated electronic flourishes. Which isn't to say it's a bad album. On the contrary, despite some ill-advised attempts at would-be-hip DJ-style tracks, Catching Tales features more of Cullum's superb songwriting. Essentially a singer/songwriter in the tradition of such icons as Billy Joel and Randy Newman, Cullum is at his best when performing simple melodic songs with some jazz harmony that make the most of his burnished croon and verbal wit. To these ends, the beautifully melancholy "London Skies" brings to mind Joe Jackson covering a Radiohead song. Similarly, the romantic and folky "Photograph" reveals the often sardonically snotty Cullum to be a top-notch balladeer. It's also at these soft rock moments, when he isn't attempting to gun down the jazz canon, that Cullum's improvisation sounds the best. Also impressive is his mid-tempo swing-cum-soul track "Nothing I Do," which marries Harry Connick, Jr.'s neo-croon to Stevie Wonder's R&B harmonies. If Cullum's only attempt at contemporary hipness was his inspired cover version of the Doves' "Catch the Sun," the album would be a rousing success. Unfortunately though, Cullum's expansive vision finds him collaborating with Dan the Automator on the leadoff track, "Get Your Way." What may have been an attempt to try something new ultimately sounds more like early-'90s hip-hop jazz à la Digable Planets replete with scratchy vinyl record sound and canned beat. Also disappointing is his reworking of the Harry Warren classic "I Only Have Eyes for You," which, while an attempt at a Massive Attack-style trip-hop track, sounds more like U2's equally atrocious 1990 Cole Porter redo "Night and Day." However, when Cullum sticks to his piano and a good melody Catching Tales actually bests Twentysomething and easily shakes the "new-jazz" tag he has been working against. © Matt Collar /TiVo
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Pop - Released October 31, 2018 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Jazz - Released September 1, 2014 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

The intent behind Jamie Cullum's seventh album, Interlude -- released in the U.K. in 2014, with a U.S. release in 2015 -- is to strongly reconnect the singer/pianist with his jazz roots. Gone are the flirtations with electronics, along with original material: Cullum is playing live with a jazz orchestra, singing standards that are familiar but not shopworn. He expands the songbook so there's room for Hank Williams' "Lovesick Blues" and the Animals' "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood," but his playbook is straight out of Ray Charles. He's growling and crooning as he alternately pounds and tinkles his piano, giving plenty of space for the orchestra to surge but not allowing a lot of room for improvisation. Most of the songs here clock in somewhere between three and four minutes, which is a strong indication that this album lies toward the pop end of the jazz spectrum. This is by no means a bad thing. By devoting himself to a strong book of standards and recording with a live big band, Cullum seems reinvigorated. He's enjoying tearing into these old tunes and that excitement isn't merely palpable, it's contagious. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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Jamie Cullum in the magazine