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David Kidman of fRoots

reviews Tickled Pink by Lynne Heraud & Pat Turner

Lynne and Pat have been tickling audiences pink (both metaphorically and literally!) for a number of years now; over the course of three CDs together they've lost none of their ability to creatively confront in song the varied experiences that life brings. On Tickled Pink, the mixture is broadly as before: some choice traditional material generously interspersed with original songs both serious and slightly frivolous. And again Lynne and Pat manage to achieve a suitably colourful spectrum of sound from just their two voices, sometimes backed by Pat's guitar and now occasionally further augmented by Paul Sartin on oboe or fiddle.

The ladies' grasp of effective vocal harmony is as persuasive as ever on BrawSailing and Rosemary Lane, while their treatments of Green Grows The Laurel and The Wife Of Usher's Well are significantly assured and hold our attention. I'm not quite so convinced that

they always choose the most interesting of available tune variants ? Bonny George Campbell here seems rather low?key. But the most thoroughly delightful items are the (jointlypenned) nostalgic The Sweetman, Pat's own originals The Black Ship and Small Fish (the latter written for Cornishman Roger Bryant's 70th birthday), and the lovely Time You Old Gypsy Man, a contemporary setting by Frank Lee of a charming Ralph Hodgson poem.

As for the disc's humorous moments, well it may be thought that having reached a certain stage in their lives the ladies are becoming a touch obsessed with health matters, for Tickled Pink contains no fewer than four such items (Distant Rumblings, The Smear Test, IMIMB and In Praise Of The Menopause) ?all in perfectly good taste, of course, but there's bound to be a finite limit to how long you continue to find these observations sufficiently amusing. Even the nonmedical ditty Oxfam Girls is likely to overstay its welcome after a couple of plays (or even after a couple of gig airings, where the ladies' accompanying banter forms a logical and integral part of their stage act).

I can well understand the rationale for making CDs which closely approximate the live gig repertoire (thus satisfying one category of demand), and Lynne and Pat are to be admired for having the courage of their convictions, so fans of this effervescent duo won't be disappointed with their latest offering.