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Meet Jon Batiste, New Grammy Winner With Lots To Do | Celebrity News

NEW YORK (AP) — Jon Batiste wears so many hats he might need a closet for all — recording artist, bandleader, music director, film composer, museum creative director and scion of the New Orleans musical royalty. The multi-instrumentalist won five Grammys on Sunday and although he’s been on TV all week, not many people know about it.

HE HAS ‘A SOUL’

Batiste composed music, consulted, and arranged songs for Pixar’s animated “Soul,” a midlife crisis film mixed with New York jazz fantasia and body-swapping comedy. He won a Golden Globe for Music alongside Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross of Nine Inch Nails; and the trio also won the Oscar for Best Original Score. For their work on “Soul,” Batiste, Reznor and Ross won the Grammy for Best Soundtrack for Visual Media on Sunday.

AT THE PIANO EVERY NIGHT

Batiste has toured the world with his band Stay Human and made a memorable stop on Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report” in 2014. When the producers of “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” were considering having a house band l he following year, Batiste and Stay Human were a natural fit. The mutual respect that Colbert and Batiste share is evident. The conductor often applauds the comedian’s nocturnal monologue on the piano, appears in segments and accompanies musical guests. Batiste has stuck with the gig even during the pandemic, delivering tunes, both originals and covers, on location.

MAKE SOFT MUSIC

Recording since his teens, Batiste’s albums include “Hollywood Africans,” produced by T Bone Burnett, “Anatomy of Angels: Live at the Village Vanguard,” and “Meditations,” a collaboration with guitarist Cory Wong. His album “Social Music” spent more than a month at the top of the Billboard and iTunes jazz charts, and he also composed the pandemic charity album, “Relief: A Benefit for Jazz Musicians’ Relief Fund Foundation of America”. His eighth album and Grammy breakthrough was 2021’s “We Are,” a sonic explosion blending R&B, jazz, hip-hop, brass bands and rock, sometimes all in the same song. It has been nominated in categories as diverse as R&B, Jazz, American Roots, Classical, Music Video and Album of the Year. Batiste’s “American Symphony” is set to premiere at Carnegie Hall in May.

THE BIG EASY

Batiste comes from a long line of New Orleans musicians, which includes the Batiste Brothers Band and marching band legends Milton and “Uncle” Lionel Batiste. He played drums as a child before switching to the piano at age 11. He graduated from the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts and the prestigious The Juilliard School. New Orleans music and culture are highlighted in Batiste’s “Freedom” video, which features the St. Augustine High School band, which Batiste attended, marching through the city streets. “Jon Batiste has been a tremendous ambassador for Louisiana, as an artist and as someone who truly cares about the people of our great state,” Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards said Monday.

SECONDARY CLASHES

Batiste became the first music director of The Atlantic magazine in 2017 and is co-creative director of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem. He has been featured in ad campaigns for Chase, Apple, Lincoln and many fashion brands including Ralph Lauren, Barney’s, Nordstrom and H&M. His song “Freedom” was featured through the NCAA Tournament and served as the face of New Orleans ahead of Saturday night’s Final Four at Caesars Superdome. He also had a role in Spike Lee’s 2012 film “Red Hook Summer” and appeared as himself in the HBO television series “Treme.” Batiste is literally the poster child for the next New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.

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