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Jamie Cullum

We're at North Sea 2005, in one of the major halls at the biggest indoor jazz festival in the world, where the house announcer says it all: "Ladies and gentlemen, his album 20 Something sold over two million! He's played for the Queen of England! At 25 he's a superstar! MR! JAMIE! CULLUM!"

Jamie Cullum

And for the next 30 minutes, we're in the hands of, in Dee Dee Bridgewater's words, a fabulous entertainer.

Although he's not nearly as well known in the U.S. as in the UK, pianist/singer/high energy performer Cullum made the cover of a recent JazzTimes magazine, and will perform in Las Vegas and the Southwest in May.

His tour schedule is on his Web site (link below). His new CD is Catching Tales. He's always in motion and packing the hall with young fans at North Sea: in his words, the greatest jazz festival in the world.

Next, Jamie makes a cameo with harmonica man Toots Thielemans, celebrating the songwriter Harold Arlen's centennial. Arlen was born in 1905 and wrote over 400 songs, including music for The Wizard of Oz. Roberta Gambarini also joins Toots for a song by Harold Arlen.

Our closing voice is Cristina Branco. She sings fado, Portuguese blues about loves lost to the sea. Richard Galliano on accordion, Maarten van der Grinten on guitar, and Michael Moore on clarinet are guest artists with Branco.

Thanks to Radio Netherlands for our visit to the esteemed North Sea Jazz Festival. The next Festival takes place in early July (link below) in Rotterdam after three decades in The Hague.

Cullum, piano and vocals
Geoff Gascoyne, bass
Sebastiaan de Krom, drums
Sam Westwood, trumpet, guitar, keyboards

Toots Thielemans, harmonica
Kenny Werner, piano
Marcel Fisser, guitar
Ray Drummond, bass
Jeff Hamilton, drums
Frits Landesbergen, pc
Jurre Haanstra, conductor

Cristina Branco, vocals
Alexandre Silva and Custodio Castelo, guitars
Ricardo Dias, piano
Fernando Maia, bass

Cullum set
"The Wind Cries Mary" (Jimi Hendrix)
"Twentysomething" (Jamie Cullum)
"Everlasting Love" (as heard in Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason) (Bud Cason)
"All at Sea" (Jamie Cullum)
"I Could Have Danced All Night (with hiphop beat)" (Lerner & Loewe from My Fair Lady)

Toots Thielemans set, saluting Harold Arlen (lyrics by Johnny Mercer)
This Time the Dream's on Me
One for My Baby
Branco set Navio Triste (Ricardo Dias / Vitorino)
Aconteceu (Pericles Cavalcanti)
Valsinha (Chico Buarque)

Travel to North Sea on a Jazz Tour with WBGO listeners
Jamie Cullum's Site
Cristina Branco's Site
Radio Netherlands
North Sea 2006

We thank Radio Netherlands Noah Waxman, producer Manon Miessen, and recording engineers Frank Matthijssen, Michiel Hoogenboezem and Paul Schoenmakers.
Our team is Ginger Bruner @ KUNV Las Vegas, Duke Markos, Becca Pulliam and Thurston Briscoe III @ Jazz 88 WBGO in Newark, New Jersey.

Copyright 2007 NPR