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John McAlister of Lancashire Wakes

reviews The Island of Apples by Mick Ryan & Pete Harris

I love this sort of CD, great singing, good songs and an Irish influence. Ewan McColl would have approved, lots of songs following in the tradition of the radio ballads which produced such fine songs. The songs draw from the past but no worse for that, lots of emotion and celebration of the struggle of the left for a better life. The favourite is 'A Tolpuddle Man', written by Graham Moore, but performed so well here by his friends. This duo have been on the folk scene a long time and the depth of experience shows in the performances. Pete Harris provides the musical accompaniments with guest appearances from Paul Sartin on oboe and fiddle.
Their website is at www.mickandpete.co.uk/ where I was to find that they are retired teachers; join the club! Two songbooks are available through the site should you like to sing the songs (well, that's what it's all about!). Strongly recommended.