Alec Templeton was a blind pianist and satirist who appeared on many radio shows.
Templeton, blind from birth, could pick out tunes on a piano at the age of 4.
Born in Cardiff, Wales, he came to the United States in 1935. He appeared as a guest on a number of radio programs and later starred in a show of his own. He became a U.S. citizen in 1941.
Templeton was skilled at improvising. He would ask for five musical notes from an audience and weave the notes into a melody, or he would ask for the names of several songs and work them into a composition.
He attended Worcester College of Music in England. He went on a concert tour and then joined Jack Hilton’s jazz band, playing special numbers such as “Rhapsody in Blue.”
He accompanied the Hilton unit to the United States for a radio series and stayed on when the band returned to England.
Among places at which Templeton entertained in U.S. tours were the Rainbow Room in New York, the Detroit Athletic Club, the Drake Hotel in Chicago and the Cocoanut Grove in Los Angeles.
Radio programs on which he appeared included the Bing Crosby and Ford shows.
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