Calvin Newton, wife Joyce and granddaughter
Calvin Newton joined the Heavenly Choir Friday, March 3rd. A person couldn't ask for a better friend than Cal, who was known for his everlasting smile. Although he was a native of Illinois, Cal was proud to tell everyone he was from Lookout Mountain where he lived for many years. Growing up, Calvin was a boxer, winning the Kentucky Golden Gloves in just 23 seconds.
His early career was with the Blackwood Brothers, Oak Ridge Quartet, Sons of Song and others. The high tenor singer sang on many Gaither Homecoming videos. Newton was inducted into the Southern Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 2,000.
Jake Hess once said, “Anyone who listens to Calvin Newton sing will discover what I’ve known all along – he is the finest gospel tenor there has ever been.”
Calvin was a guest on my talk show in the 90’s with Wally Fowler promoting and talking about Southern Gospel Music. He spent an afternoon with us at WDYN singing and raising money for the radio station.
I sat next to Calvin at the funeral of Anthony Burger and enjoyed the conversation about his career. I later attended a gigantic birthday party for him at the Parkway Baptist Church.
Calvin loved dearly his wife Joyce, daughter Jackie and entire family. Calvin would call me often and say it just hadn't been the same without his sweet wife Joyce, who worked in the Chattanooga Mayor's office for many years.
When David Carroll sent me a text of Cal's passing, my mind was flooded with so many good memories. Most of all Calvin Newton loved the Lord and would rather sing the Gospel than eat.
I have a collection of his recordings with the Sons of Song trio. He was very proud of his daughter Jackie, an accomplished musician who at his big birthday party sang one of her dad’s favorite songs, “It is well with my soul.” Calvin is now enjoying a re-union with his Joyce. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.
Ryan Funeral Home in Trenton, Georgia is handling the arrangements. Calvin was 93.
This video was made by Ben Cagle. It’s priceless with Calvin’s daughter Jackie singing for her father.