In 1925, Sam Wooding's orchestra—as part of the Chocolate Kiddies variety show—became the first big band to perform in Copenhagen. To many Danes, this was their introduction to jazz, and the press was intrigued, especially the music critics, who normally covered more conventional concert fare. By 1931, members of The Chocolate Kiddies troupe had long since gone their separate ways, with several moving on to individual success. Sam spent a few years touring internationally with his orchestra, its personnel now slightly different but no less spirited or accomplished. When the band and singer Edith Wilson arrived at Copenhagen's main railroad terminal, the local press was there to welcome them, as were a few hundred Danish fans.
The Danish press no longer saw a black jazz band as a novelty, but their fascination with Sam had not abated, and he was having his fun with them—he knew what to say and was never at a loss for words. When I translated the following article for him forty years later, he chuckled and said that members of the Hottentots group were, hopefully, not around to read his not-so-kind assessment of them. To enlarge the text, please click on the image.