C. Michael Bailey, All About Jazz

2 of a Kind is a wholly organic jazz recording. Vocalist Gregory Generet and pianist Richard Johnson(notable for his past membership in the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra and Wynton Marsalis’ septet) join forces on a potent collection of original compositions and standards, split half and half. The arrangements for all are progressive and assertive. The ballad “Angel Eyes” is put on the stove with the gas on high. Generet manhandles the familiar melody, producing an upbeat siren of an old favorite. On the other sonic end, “You’d Be So Nice To Come Home To” both Generet and Johnson strip things down to the bare essence of the Cole Porter classic, allowing bassist Barry Stephenson ample arco solo space. Johnson provides several original compositions, showing off that skill, in addition to his arranging duties. Generet meets the challenge on all of the pieces singing with a beautifully fractured masculine voice that is as deep and rich as the fecund musical alluvium from which jazz emerged. 2 of a Kind may the the surprise recording considered here. But, it really should not be a surprise at all.

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