Gretchen Parlato and Lionel Loueke Earn GRAMMY®  Nomination for Lean In (Edition Records)

Lean In has been nominated for Best Jazz Vocal Album at the 66th GRAMMY® Awards

Listen to “Lean In” here

“The vocalist and guitarist unite on a mellow yet complex album that is a winning testament to the musicians’ less-is-more approach.” – The Wall Street Journal

“They explore the plights and points of their inspirations in duo for the first time, searching for beauty and distinguishing themselves in sound and language.” – Jazz Trail

“Two decades of collaboration and close friendship are on display with Parlato and Loueke’s first full duo-recording; Lean In shows the breadth of their globe-spanning interests and dazzling versatility, but most important is the heartfelt warmth through every moment.” – All About Jazz

New York, NY – Renowned jazz artists Gretchen Parlato and Lionel Loueke have achieved an extraordinary milestone, securing a GRAMMY® nomination for Best Jazz Vocal Album with their collaborative new album Lean In. Rooted in freedom, spontaneity, and impulse, Lean In showcases the earthy connection and palpable synergy of two musical collaborators and friends. Conceptualized, written, and recorded while in the grips of a global pandemic, the soul-stirring set bears the various and tense loads of the last three years, all while Parlato and Loueke remain decidedly vulnerable and charismatic. The celebration for the 66th GRAMMY® Awards has been officially confirmed for February 4, 2024.

“We are so grateful and elated to receive this GRAMMY® nomination! This recognition by the Recording Academy is especially meaningful, as it acknowledges a 22 year-long friendship and journey as musical soulmates. We are honored to share this experience with all the nominees, and are so thankful,” Parlato and Lionel shared in a joint statement. 

Lean In evolved between Luxembourg and Los Angeles, where the two respectively reside, as the artists traded song ideas over the internet. Within four months of the process, Parlato and Loueke were in a Los Angeles studio, rounding out the band with two of the most versatile musicians of their respective instruments, bassist Burniss Travis and drummer Mark Guiliana. Performed in English, Portuguese, and Fon (an indigenous language of Benin), the songs formulate brilliant soundscapes from pop and R&B classics to Afrobeat and Brazilian tunes that, once amalgamated, defy categorization. 

The duo met in 2001 at The Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz at the University of California, Los Angeles. In 2003, both musicians cut their teeth on New York City’s jazz circuit, often playing duo concerts, or inviting one another as guests within larger ensembles. Over the next three years, they both would emerge as major artists on the rise, with Loueke working with luminaries like Terence Blanchard and Herbie Hancock and Parlato winning first place in the 2004 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Vocals Competition, gaining the attention and mentorship of Wayne Shorter and others. Parlato and Loueke continued to appear on each other’s respective projects, both offering a pan-genre approach to their artistry with global influences as the cornerstone of their expression. This is Gretchen Parlato’s third GRAMMY® nomination in the Jazz Vocal Album category. Her first nomination came in 2013 for her album Live in NYC, and her second in 2021 for Flor. This is Lionel Loueke’s first GRAMMY®  nomination. 

Parlato and Loueke acknowledge the honor of sharing the nomination in this category with esteemed nominees Nicole Zuraitis, Fred Hersch, Esperanza Spalding, Cécile McLorin Salvant, and Patti Austin (featuring Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat Band).

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