Picks and Pans Review: Rose of My Heart

updated 06/02/1986 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 06/02/1986 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Nicolette Larson

One of Larson's strengths has always been her good material; another has been her collaboration with talented musicians. She has surpassed herself on this LP, which combines country rock, sophisticated weepy ballads and even a touch of gospel. Larson and her co-producers, Emory Gordy Jr. and Tony Brown, came up with a prime Deborah Allen-Rafe VanHoy tune, If I Didn't Love You. There's a vigorous Ray Edenton-Don Winters song, You're Running Wild, on which Linda Ronstadt adds a harmony vocal that is so purely pretty it makes you wish she still did this kind of thing all the time. (Dave Log-gins, Mac McAnally, Troy Seals, Harry Stinson, Steve Wariner and Allen also make notable vocal contributions.) The high point, though, is That's More About Love (Than I Wanted to Know), a Dickey Lee-Bob McDill-Bucky Jones tune that may be the epitome of country music songs about loving and learning: "So if this is the part/Where I learn about leavin'/lf this is where you say goodbye/Then walk out the door/Oh, darlin', stop now/Don't go any further/'Cause that's more about love/ Than I wanted to know." Who would ever have thought Nicolette could have turned herself into such a good good ole girl? (MCA)

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