Pick Temple

Folk Songs of the People

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The 1948 vintage sides on this 10" LP, released by RCA-Victor's "X" label, were cut a little before Pick Temple became an institution of Washington, D.C. television, though they show off some key aspects of the easygoing persona that turned him into a local media star for a decade. All but one of the songs here is traditional, and will be familiar in some form or other to virtually all listeners -- Temple's interpretations aren't too distinctive, but they are good baseline versions of each, with his approach to "I Had a Bird and the Bird Pleased Me" displaying an innocent charm that demonstrated, even this far back, his potential appeal to young viewers and their parents. His guitar playing is basic and not too complex but never boring, either. And the one original here, "The Runaway Logging Train," shows of a strong command of traditional folk elements, as well as Temple's abilities as a persuasive personality where young audiences were concerned, that would keep him busy speaking before school groups in the D.C. area for years.