The bandleader and recent Grammy winner will be replaced by Louis Cato.
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Jon Batiste is leaving The Late Show With Stephen Colbert after seven years. The bandleader will be replaced by Louis Cato, who has served as interim bandleader this summer.

The recent Grammy winner is departing to pursue personal and professional interests. Colbert announced Batiste's departure on Thursday's edition of the show.

Late Show with Stephen Colbert Jon Batiste
Stephen Colbert and Jon Batiste on 'The Late Show'
| Credit: Scott Kowalchyk/CBS

"I've got news about our dear friend Jon Batiste," said Colbert. "Now, sharp-eyed viewers may have noticed that Jon hasn't been here this summer. Well, I have an update. Jon has decided to leave the show. But it's for all the best reasons, including to continue sharing his art with the world."

The host continued, "We wanted to give him a big in-person send-off. Joe Walsh was going to pop out of a cake, but Jon's not in town. I hope he's cutting his new album, and I hope it's called More Grammys, Please. We have been so lucky to have a front-row seat to Jon's incredible talent for the past seven years, and will we miss him here? Yeah! Yeah! But we're happy for you, Jon, and I can't wait to have you back on as a guest with your next hit record. I love you."

Late Show with Stephen Colbert
Stephen Colbert and Jon Batiste on 'The Late Show'
| Credit: Scott Kowalchyk/CBS

Colbert went on to say Cato is taking over.

"But as happy as I am for Jon, I am thrilled for us, because I have the privilege to announce that this incredible band is staying right there and that our new bandleader is the one, the only Mr. Louis Cato, ladies and gentlemen," he said. "If you've been watching, and I hope you have, you know that Louis has done a great job this summer and he's very humble, so he won't say this, but I will: He is a musical genius. He could basically play every instrument on that stand over there. Give him an afternoon — he'll learn how to play Mozart on a shoehorn."

Late Show with Stephen Colbert Louis Cato
Louis Cato on 'The Late Show With Stephen Colbert'
| Credit: Scott Kowalchyk/CBS

In addition to his duties on The Late Show, Batiste co-composed the score for the film Soul, for which he won an Academy Award.

He also won five Grammys earlier this year, snagging the awards for Album of the Year for his eighth studio album, 2021's We Are; Best Music Video for his song "Freedom"; Best American Roots Performance and Best American Roots Song for "Cry"; and Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media for Soul, which he wrote with Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross.

Cato released his first solo album, Starting Now, in 2016.

Watch Colbert announce Batiste's departure from the show below.

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