It's official: jazz pianist Jason Moran, born and raised in Houston and a graduate of the High School for the Performing & Visual Arts, is a genius.
He got one of the high-profile $500,000 grants from the MacArthur Foundation today.
While most of the attention has gone to the award granted to David Simon, creator of The Wire, the money is just as green for Moran, 35.
Here's what the foundation had to say about him:
Jason Moran is a pianist, composer, and bandleader who mines a variety of musical styles to create adventurous, genre-crossing jazz performances. Moran's signature corpus marries established classical, blues, and jazz techniques with the musical influences of his generation, including funk, hip-hop, and rock.
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Here's what we've had to say about him in the past:
Ever meet a jazz snob, the fan or musician who maintains the "obvious" superiority of jazz over other genres? Pianist, Houston native and HSPVA grad Jason Moran is the polar opposite -- an uncompromising jazz musician unashamed to draw inspiration from areas considered sacrilege by purists. He reimagines works of Afrika Bambaataa, Bjork and classical composer Robert Schumann.
On his Twitter account, Moran said he "... is the latest recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship!!!! Woo hooo."
HSPVA classmates, feel free to hit the genius up for loans or grants at his webpage.