NEWPORT — Jon Batiste & Friends —Corinne Bailey Rae, PJ Morton, ELEW and Ethan Iverson — will take over the Friday evening concert at the Newport Jazz Festival on Aug. 2, at 8 p.m at the International Tennis Hall of Fame at the Newport Casino. Produced by Jon Batiste, the concert will feature Batiste in piano duos with Morton, ELEW and Iverson.
Batiste, a multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, composer and Music Director of "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert," is a regular at the Newport Jazz and Folk Festivals, where he and his band Stay Human played one set on the Folk stage, two at the Jazz Festival and presented a special performance at the Newport Festivals Foundation Gala in 2015. In 2017, he and George Wein, chairman of Newport Festivals Foundation and co-founder of the two summer events, walked across the stage together to receive honorary doctorate degrees at Salve Regina University. In addition, Batiste was the Musical Director of "A Change Is Gonna Come" at the Newport Folk Festival last year.
A man of many interests, Batiste has performed with Stevie Wonder, Prince, Ed Sheeran, Lenny Kravitz, Mavis Staples and Willie Nelson, among others. He tours the world with Stay Human, and, since 2015, appears with them nightly as bandleader for Stephen Colbert. He also has released 11 recordings since 2005, including his latest, "Hollywood Africans," his intimate take on some of his original music and jazz standards from the early jazz of New Orleans to the present day. He was cast in three seasons of the HBO television series, "Treme," and in Spike Lee’s "Red Hook Summer."
He is also the music director of The Atlantic and the Creative Director of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem.
All tickets for the Friday evening concert and cocktail party are available on the Festival web site at newportjazz.org/ithof. The concert is a reserved seating event and tickets sell out quickly. There is a six-ticket limit per household. The Newport Jazz Festival Friday evening cocktail party on the Horseshoe Piazza welcomes a limited number of attendees for pre-concert socializing with music, food and beverages. Tickets include open bar and hors d’oeuvres.Tickets are limited and exclusively for concertgoers. Party attendees must purchase a separate ticket to the festival concert.
— Nancy Burns-Fusaro