Eddie Kendricks.

Bronze Statue of Eddie Kendricks

Field review by the editors.

Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham native Eddie Kendricks was the sometimes-lead singer of the soul group The Temptations. He died in 1992, and Birmingham has erected a tribute to him, sculpted by Ronald Scott McDowell, in a tiny downtown park.

A plaque at the Eddie Kendrick (he dropped the "s" at some point) Memorial Park notes that his nickname was "cornbread," and the sculpture features the entire five-man Temptations line-up, standing on what appears to be a giant vinyl record.

Eddie is frozen in bronze, performing with microphone in hand, eyes cast heavenward, crooning one his trademark "Ooooooohs." His skinny frame stands in front of a granite wall engraved with musical notes and the titles of the Temptations' hits ("Just my Imagination," "Since I Lost My Baby," "Papa Was a Rolling Stone," etc.). Quasi-3D sculptures of the rest of the group, in mid-performance strut, extrude from the wall.

Monument to the Temptations.

The sculpture, challenged with rendering a dynamic pop figure in a medium that historically immortalizes generals and politicians, is unusual (and no doubt pleasing to Temptations fans, who can pose with Eddie). But anyone trying to freeze Eddie Kendricks in bronze was probably never going to get it quite right.

Bronze Statue of Eddie Kendricks

Address:
4th Ave. N., Birmingham, AL
Directions:
Downtown, on the south side of 4th Ave. N. just west of 18th St. N.
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