Julliard-trained New Orleans jazz prodigy Jon Batiste will be the bandleader when Stephen Colbert takes over The Late Show this September. As you can see from his website, 28-year-old Batiste sings, raps, plays many instruments — like his predecessor Paul Shaffer, keyboards are his specialty — and infuses his uptempo jazz with strong doses of hip-hop and soul. He heads up the band Stay Human, who performed multiple times on The Colbert Report, and was recently named Associate Artistic Director of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem. Colbert made the announcement in this video:
Here’s the press release as well:
Mark your calendars forever.
Move over Madame Elizabeth Thibble, first female balloonist, because from this moment through perpetuity, June 4th will be celebrated as the day jazz virtuoso Jon Batiste became bandleader for The Late Show With Stephen Colbert!
“We are thrilled that Jon Batiste is joining The Late Show family of products,” said Host and rare mp3-collector Stephen Colbert. “For my money, nobody plays like Jon Batiste. And you can trust me, because it is my money.”
Batiste is an acclaimed composer and multi-instrumentalist who has mastered piano, melodica, percussion, bass, conversational Spanish and Microsoft Office (except Outlook, which cannot be mastered). He is an active member of the legendary Batiste family of musicians, hailing from cradle of New Orleans Jazz: New Orleans, The Jazz Easy. He is Julliard-trained, street-tested, and honey-baked, to seal in his juices.
The Late Show With Stephen Colbert premieres 9/8 on CBS.