MTV Artist To Watch: Get To Know Piano-Pop Player Tom Odell

Tom Odell Artist To Watch

Tom Odell breaks hearts and induces all the #crys with his sensitive piano pop.

It’s not often you find a young pop pianist who doesn’t get, say, thrown into the adult contemporary bin along with Josh Groban, Norah Jones, and Michael Buble. (Nothing wrong with those guys, of course, but they don’t exactly fall into our, erm, demographic.)

And then there’s 22-year-old U.K. singer, songwriter, and pianist Tom Odell, a long-haired blond dreamboat who idolizes Elton John and manages to create heartbreaking piano pop that you could easily enjoy with your mom, grandma, and anyone else who puts his record on. Yep, Tom’s what you might call “cross-generational.”

Read more about Tom Odell after the jump.

Initially discovered by Lily Allen in 2012 (yes, THAT Lily Allen), Tom signed to her label, In The Name Of (a Columbia imprint), and has since made a career splashdown in the U.K. After releasing his debut EP, Songs from Another Love, in Oct. 2012, Tom won the BRITs’ Critics’ Choice Award in 2013, was one of 15 nominees for the BBC Sound of 2013 poll, and his music has even been used in a handful of Burberry runway shows. (That’s about as British as it gets, no?)

But before we kvell too hard over Tom and his many accomplishments, let’s first focus on his debut studio album, Long Way Down, which dropped just last summer. We’ll start things off with Tom’s piano-heavy “Another Love,” an exhaustive, heartbreaking ballad about wanting to connect to someone but feeling “used up” by a previous relationship. “I wanna sing a song, that’d be just ours/ But I sang ‘em all to another heart/ And I wanna cry, I wanna fall in love/ But all my tears have been used up/ On another love.”

On “Hold Me,” a cheerier, percussion-driven track, Tom’s vocals sound explosive (much like, say, The Avett Brothers) as he croons about the touch-the-sky feeling you get from connecting with a new love: When you hold me, when you hold me in your arms/ Oh when you hold me, yeah I can feel your heart/ When you hold me, when you hold me in your arms/ Oh when you hold me, yeah I can feel your heart beating.”

Nowadays, MTV’s latest Artist To Watch will be touring through Europe, but in case you live Stateside, you can grab a copy of Tom’s Long Way Down AND cast your vote to make “Hold Me” BBC’s “Hottest Record Of 2013.” Once you’ve done that, download “Hold Me,” and watch footage of Tom performing “Hold Me” and “Another Love” live below!

+ Download Tom Odell’s “Hold Me,” watch Tom Odell perform “Another Love,” “Hold Me,” “I Know,” and “Another Love” on Buzzworthy Live.

Photo credit: Columbia