Jon Batiste is leaving the bandleader position on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert

Grammy-winning musician Jon Batiste has left his role as bandmaster for Late Night with Stephen Colbert. The late night host made the announcement on Thursday night’s show. Stepping into his very large shoes will be Louis Catothat has been filled in for Batiste over the summer. Stephen Colbert said that the rest of Batiste’s Stay Human group will remain intact, then introduced his studio audience to what will now be called Louis Cato and the Late Show Band.

Earlier this year, Batiste’s album came out We are took home the Album of the Year Grammy, one of its 11 nominations. He has won five in total, and also has an Oscar, which he shares Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross for Best Original Score for the Film Soul.

Colbert broke the news of Batiste’s departure gently, explaining that he was leaving “for all the best reasons, including to continue sharing his art with the world.” Unfortunately, the message did not contain a personal dispatch (Joe WalshThe Eagles guitarist, who has been sitting in the group, was apparently ready to pop out of a cake), but Colbert said he’s been “lucky enough to have a front row seat to Jon’s incredible talent for seven years.”

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Batiste has been Colbert’s bandleader since the show began in 2015. The 35-year-old is part of the legendary New Orleans Batiste family of musicians, which includes composer Harold Batiste, clarinetist Alvin Batiste, Lionel Batiste of the Treme Brass Band and Jon’s. cousin, Russell Batiste, member of Funky Meters. Early in the Colbert-Batiste partnership, the couple went to New Orleans, where Jon introduced Stephen to his roots.


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As for the new guy, it’s a promotion-from-within situation as Louis Cato is already a member of Batiste’s Stay Human group. He is a bassist, guitarist, drummer, trombonist, tuba player, singer, songwriter and producer who, as Colbert put it, can play Mozart on a shoehorn. Born in Portugal, raised in North Carolina, he has recorded with a wealth of jazz, R&B, pop and genre crossing.

Over the years, Batiste has been involved in many large Late Show pre-recorded pieces, as a humorous spin on Jazz 101, performed surprising covers of video game music, hit the streets of Manhattan for various “love riots” and brought in non-agenarian jazz drummers Roy Haynes up to his office for a jam session.

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