Sam Wooding, jazz pianist, arranger and composer, began his career in 1912 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. In the 1920's-1940's he played residencies with the Society Syncopators and his Southland Spiritual Choir as well as other groups, touring the United States and Europe. In the mid-1930's Wooding attended the University of Pennsylvania, earning two degrees, including a Master's in Education. He taught during the early 1950's, then in 1953 he became the accompanist-manager for his third wife, singer Rae Harrison; thereafter the duo toured extensively throughout the world. In 1975 Wooding organized a big band, the Bicentennial Jazz Vista Orchestra. Among many "firsts" in jazz history, Wooding is credited with having the first American band to make recordings in Europe, the first black band to play a musical abroad in the "Chocolate Kiddies" in Berlin, and the first black band to tour the Soviet Union and Scandinavia.
From the description of Sam Wooding papers, 1921-1986. (New York Public Library). WorldCat record id: 85031356