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Who is Jon Batiste and where did he come from? - By SaraJane Devereaux

Who is Jon Batiste?

More recently, you might’ve been scrolling on YouTube, Instagram, or literally any social outlet, and you might’ve seen this tall, African American, free spirited man. If we’re both on the same page, we’re both thinking of Jon Batiste.

Jon Batiste is one of those people who only come once in a generation. I found out about Jon Batiste when I started watching The Late Show With Stephen Colbert every night with two of my brothers and my parents. Stephen would get through his monologue (which most of the time would be about what crazy political thing just happened), then he would talk to Jon. My first impression of Batiste was that he reminded me a little bit of Stevie Wonder. I always loved the thirty second we would get of Jon Batiste plucking away at the keys of the piano. GEEEEZ, he’s good!

I didn’t see how talented he was until I found out he was writing a song about Kamala Harris. The night that he finally sang the song on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, I was pleasantly shocked by how groovy this song was. I chuckled a few times, but most of all I said, “Yeah, we’re going to have a female Vice President, and her name is Kamala Harris.” Watching Jon Batiste release his newest album “WE ARE” was incredible. His album is one of the greatest things that came out of this horribly negative period of time. His music is unlike anything you hear on the radio these days.

His song “FREEDOM” gets me out of a bad mood. With the fast beat and the retro feel, it just makes my heart happy. Watching Jon Batiste perform FREEDOM on The Late Late Show With James Cordon really opened my eyes. I want to be like Jon! No, no. I don’t want to be a performer, or a singer-songwriting legend, I want to be like Jon in the sense that he doesn’t care what people think about him! I feel like we can all learn something from him.

Where is Jon Batiste from?

Jon Batiste was born in Metairie, Louisiana. That’s definitely something that you can tell when you hear the way he speaks and the positivity he radiates. In 2005, at only the age of 18, he started the band “Stay Human”, best known for being the band for The Late Show With Stephen Colbert.

What is Soul?

You might have heard of that movie that has gotten so many recognition and awards, Soul. In the movie, music teacher Joe Gardner, went into the “Great Beyond” and later in the movie the “Great Before.” In case you haven’t watched this movie yet, I won’t say much more about the plot of the movie. But you might notice that the music in the movie is just calming and groovy. It might remind you of 60s jazz music. That would be because the amazingly talented Jon Batiste was the one in charge of the film’s musical sequences.

Soul has gone on to win 2 Oscars for Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, and Best Animated Feature Film. It also won a Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture Animated, and Best Original Score- Motion Picture. This movie got Jon Batiste the recognition for his work that he has deserved for a long time.

The thing I find most intriguing about Jon is that he doesn’t care what people think. If you ever search up Jon Batiste on YouTube and decide to watch some music videos, you’ll see that he lets his body move however it feels like moving. He lets the music take over his body and mind. That’s something we don’t see very often these days. He’s getting popularity for being himself, not for being someone who did something that might be controversial.

What should you do with this information?

Well, If I were you, I would go to whatever music platform you have on your phone and listen to “WE ARE”. But if that’s not your jam, then I recommend going to Disney + and watching Soul. Or you might want to start watching The Late Show With Stephen Colbert so that you can see Jon Batiste.

Links to find Jon Batiste:


SaraJane Devereaux (Pronounced: Dev-Er-Row) is from Las Vegas, Nevada. SaraJane has a passion for reading and tends to read almost anything she can get her hands on. She has been making up stories for a long time, between telling stories with a pencil and paper or acting it out in front of her family, she's a storyteller at heart. Right now, SaraJane is focused on writing what her heart wants, but she wants to be a screenwriter as her career. She has been published on Blue Things Zine, Feed Us With Words, and SAST, just to name a few. She hopes that the world realizes that it's okay to still be obsessed with Hamilton in 2021. ​

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