The Miami Herald has extolled the talents of young jazz pianist Jamie Cullum as he “gives Miami’s new Carnival Center its first pop concert in a terrific show”
“Think a fresher Harry Connick Jr., but with a hipper hairdo and some actual flair. But to these pop-seasoned ears, Cullum is much closer to the second coming of a young Elton John or Songs in the Attic-era Billy Joel for the way he treats the piano as a prop — pounding it with rock ‘n’ roll fervor, playing atop it and under it, all the while coaxing sonorous tones from its keys.
There’s a bit of Joel, too, in Cullum’s elastic vocal phrasing on his original songs like These Are the Days, a tuneful pop number from his first album, Twentysomething. Monday night, he turned it into an audience participation number, calling on half of the hall to act as saxophones, the other half to become trumpets carrying a melodic phrase. You won’t see that in the jazz loft at the Van Dyke. Jazz is largely mired in the past. Cullum, lacing his original tunes with modern hip-hop, rock or even folk accents, feels more like the future.”