Paul Downing (December 2, 1932 - February 23, 1992)
Southern Gospel bass singer Paul Downing was born in Manila, Arkansas on December 2, 1932. He joined the Navy in 1948 and became a salesman upon completion of his military service. In spite of his success in sales, he felt drawn to gospel music. His bass voice attracted the attention of legendary songwriter and singer Lee Roy Abernathy, who persuaded Paul to join the Abernathy All Star Quartet. Paul also sang with the Rangers Quartet and the Dixie Echoes.
In the mid-1960s, Paul met a young soprano singer for the Speer Family named Ann Sanders. Paul and Ann began dating and were soon wed. In 1969, Paul and Ann formed the successful mixed group, the Downings, which lasted until 1977.
In the early 1990s, they began to formulate an idea to reform the Downings. However, this was not to be as Paul passed away of a heart attack on February 23, 1992. Ann has continued a solo singing ministry and has been a regular featured singer on the Gaither Homecoming video series.
Singing News Fan Awards:
Favorite Bass Singer (1973)