Jimmy C. Newman
Country Weekly is saddened to report that Grand Ole Opry favorite Jimmy C. Newman died in Nashville Saturday (June 21) following a brief illness. He was 86.
A mainstay of the Opry stage, Jimmy C. was born in Mamou, La., and began performing with his brother Walter before landing gigs on KPLC-TV in Lake Charles and the Louisiana Hayride. His mix of Cajun-influenced country made him a singular figure among country performers of the time.
After landing a publishing contract with Acuff-Rose Music, Jimmy secured a deal with Dot Records, then Grand Ole Opry membership in 1956. He scored hits such as “A Fallen Star,” “Cry, Cry Darling,” “Alligator Man” and “Bayou Talk,” among others. Jimmy C. last performed at the Opry on Friday, June 6, 2014, with his band, Cajun Country.
He was a member of the Cajun Hall of Fame, the Cajun Music Hall of Fame and the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame and enjoyed spending time on his Nashville-area ranch with his wife, Mae.
A public service for Jimmy C. will be held Wednesday, June 25, at the Ryman Auditorium at 10 a.m. and will be followed by a private visitation and memorial service for close friends and family. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Grand Ole Opry Trust Fund.