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Jon Batiste brings his roots to the front on Hollywood Africans / Jazz Weekly

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Louisiana local Jon Batiste brings his roots to the front as he plays his piano and sings in a variety of settings for this well produced album. His touch on the piano is filled with Louisiana Red Clay, as on the full fisted 8 to the bar " Kenner Boogie" is genteel and whimsical while striding through "Green Hill Zone" and a gloriously ragtime'd "Nocturne No. 1 in D Minor." Even his solo read of "Smile" includes a dash of 33 1/3 rpm vinyl hiss for extra effect, while he is comfy and churchy on " What A Wonderful World."

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