Grammy 2022: who is Jon Batiste and why we will hear about him

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Write down this name because we will hear about it: Jon Batiste. Not only because, during the 64th edition of the Grammys, he took home five awards – including the one for best album – in the face of eleven nominations, but also because the boy, born in Metairie on November 11, 1986, he has already come a long way, and above all thanks to Disney. The soundtrack of Soul, the Pixar film forced to land directly on Disney + in December 2020 due to the pandemic, has in fact allowed Batiste to take home both the Golden Globe that the Oscarleading him to develop an increasingly personal style as well as a beautiful album like We Arewho managed to lay the foundations of a very ambitious project after the fruitful experience with Stay Human, with whom he performed for more than twelve editions at the The Late Show by Stephen Colbert.

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Jon Batiste and his 5 Grammys

CBS Photo Archive
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The album, in fact, is an invitation to become aware of both the pandemic and the tragic death of George Floyd, an event that led Jon Batiste himself to organize a peaceful march with 5000 people playing and singing in the streets of Manhattan in virtue of equality and respect. We Are it represents, in fact, a response to the difficulties and social injustices suffered in recent years by the black American community that Jon Batiste represents through a skilful fusion between tradition and innovation, mixing Gospel, Jazz, Soul, R&B and contemporary Hip Hop. The result is an explosion of sounds and timbres capable of spreading enthusiasm and lightheartedness, emotions that for Jon Batiste represent the best way to eliminate any type of social distancing by developing a sense of new conviviality and closeness.

Jon Batiste at the 2022 Grammys

CBS Photo Archive

This awareness Batiste reached her after a apprenticeship that allowed him to work with over two hundred musicians, including Quincy Jones and Mavis Staples, and to direct the band’s The Late Show for a dozen editions, becoming a familiar and reassuring face for the television audience. Not bad for a boy prodigy who grew up in the Metairie neighborhood of New Orleans by a family of legendary musicians (including Lionel Batiste and Harold Batiste,) playing alongside his brothers in the Batiste Brother Band already from the age of eight. A passion that Batiste continued during his adolescence, transcribing the music for the video games of Street Fighter Alpha, Final Fantasy VII And Sonic The Hedgehogand developing a musical style that, at 17, allowed him to give birth to his very first album, Times in New Orleans. From there, between his studies at Juilliard, the birth of Stay Human and a career that allowed him to win the Grammy and enter the Olympus of the great musicians.

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Source: Vanity Fair

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