Adam Wade: First African-American Game Show Host in the United States

1 Posted by - April 20, 2023 - Black First, BLACK MEN

The smooth-singing, multi-talented Adam Wade is noted for his singing career and stint as the host of the 1975 CBS game show “Musical Chairs,” which made him the first African-American game show host.

Wade was born Patrick Henry Wade on March 17, 1935, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Although he worked as a lab assistant on the polio research team with Dr. Jonas Salk, he often dreamed of pursuing a career in entertainment.

He later decided to make the journey to New York and pursue his dream. His first major break came when he signed with Coed Records and had a major hit song, “Ruby,” in the early 1960s. His vocal style was similar to that of Johnny Mathis, and several of his songs made the Top Five Billboard’s Easy Listening.

In 1975, he became the first black person to host a television game show, “Musical Chairs.” He also starred in the production “Guys and Dolls” in 1978, and hosted the talk show “Mid-Morning LA.” Wade made appearances on soap opera shows, such as “Search for Tomorrow” and “Guiding Light.” He also appeared on popular black-oriented sitcoms, including “Sanford & Son,” “The Jeffersons,” “What’s Happening,” and “Good Times.

After several decades, Wade went back to school and earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees at Lehman College and Brooklyn College. He has worked as a speech and theater adjunct at Long Island University and Bloomfield College.



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