What are the odds that a Person who plays jazz saxophone would meet another Person who plays jazz saxophone, that they would become fast friends and find they were so musically compatible that they would not only perform together but decide to record an album featuring their two horns as the front line? Meet alto saxophonist Eric Person
who in 2009 performed onstage for the first time with tenor saxophonist Houston Person
, his senior by almost three decades but someone with whom the younger Person felt an immediate musical rapport. They continue to perform together under the name Person2Person.
Even though younger at age fifty-eight, Eric Person has been a force on the jazz scene since arriving in New York City in the early '80s, and has released ten albums under his name, which is impressive but nowhere near the more than seventy that Houston Person has recorded as leader, not to mention almost the same number as a sideman. On Blue Vision
, which is under Eric Person's leadership ("featuring Houston Person"), the duo are accompanied by Adam Klipple
on the Hammond B3 organ, Pete McCann
on electric guitar and Tony Jefferson
on drums. Alex Smith
is also listed on organ (all the solos are by Klipple), Rob Kissner
on rhythm guitar ("Dear Old Stockholm" only). Five originals by Eric Person complement "Stockholm" and the album's lone standard, "Lover Man."
Wherever Houston Person goes, it is a sure bet the blues is not far behind, epitomized here by "Blue Vision" and "Old Hat Feathers." The title of "Soul Saturation" says it all, with Eric Person relishing the gritty task at hand (Houston sits that one out, as he does "Geri" and "No Doubt True Dat.") Eric Person switches to soprano sax on "Stockholm" and "Geri," his warmhearted homage to the late pianist Geri Allen
, as well as on the fast-moving finale, "True Dat." Even though the Persons are exemplary on every number on which they team, Eric and Houston take arguably their most impressive solos on the tender ballad "Lover Man." The blues also brings out the best in Houston Person, as he shows on "Blue Vision" and "Old Hat Feathers," as Eric keeps pace with some inspired blowing of his own, especially on "Feathers."
Pleasant and gently swinging jazz from two masters, a touch more of which would have been welcome (the album clocks in at a modest forty minutes). Even so, what is here is grade A. Eric and Houston should do this more often, either Person2Person or on record.
Blue Vision; Dear Old Stockholm; Lover Man; Soul Saturation; Old Hat Feathers; Geri; No Doubt True