Grammy Winner Jon Batiste, Suleika Jaouad Secretly Married

Grammy Award winner Jon Batiste and longtime partner Suleika Jaouad revealed they were secretly married.

In an interview with CBS Sunday MorningBatiste and Jaouad shared the news that they were married in a secret ceremony in February, the day before Jaouad had a bone marrow transplant as she battled leukemia for the second time.

“We had this small, beautiful ceremony. We don’t have a wedding band, we use a bread tie,” she told reporter Jim Axelrod. Jaouad described the ceremony as private, with only four people present. “And it was perfect,” she added.

Eight days before the 2022 Grammy nominations were announced, Jaouad began her first day of chemotherapy, calling her second battle with leukemia “much more intense than it was a decade ago.”

“We’re sitting in this chemo together and the congratulatory phone calls are coming in and we have to embrace these two realities,” she said.

After Jaouad underwent a bone marrow transplant, Batiste was unable to stay with her due to the increasing omicron variant of COVID-19. She shared that while having a virtual chat with him, Batiste would write her a new lullaby: “It felt like he was right there, you know, sleeping by my bed.” Batiste said he wrote lullabies “to fill the room with this healing property.”

Despite a trying time for the couple, who have been together for eight years, Batiste describes the current circumstances as “just a bend in the road” for their plans.

“OK, this has happened, but this won’t disrupt the plan we had, it’s just a bumpy road. … It was an act of defiance. The darkness will try to overcome you, but just turn on the light, focus on the light, hold on to the light,” he said.

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After learning of her diagnosis, Jaouad said Batiste revealed his plans to propose had been going on for months: “He told me, ‘I just wanted to be clear, I’m not asking for it. kiss you for this diagnosis. It took me a year to design your ring. So just know this time has nothing to do with it. But what I want you to know is that this diagnosis doesn’t change anything. It just makes it all clearer to me that I want to commit to this and let us be together. ‘ But once we realized we had this little window before a bone marrow transplant, we decided to do it.”

Jaouad said they “entered the cloud nine bone marrow transplant unit.”

“We were so happy, filled with love and positivity from this beautiful evening we had,” she said. “And I really believe that got us through. That sense of community, that feeling of love, that sense of fun and spontaneity is so important. “

The CBS Sunday Morning the special aired the same day Batiste entered the Grammy Awards as a top contender with 11 nods, including in the top categories of discography of the year and Album of the year, the following award he won for his album We are.

When accepting Album of the Year, Batiste reflected on the power of music to many people. “I believe this to my core, there is no best musician, best artist, best dancer, best actor. … Creative arts are subjective, and they reach people at a time in their lives when they need it most. It’s like a song or an album is made and it’s almost like having the radar to find the people when they need it most,” he said on stage.

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During the unvoted ceremony earlier in the day, Batiste also won four awards: best music video for “Freedom”, the soundtrack with the best score for visual medium for souland Best American Original Performance and Best American Original Song for “Cry”.

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