Clifton Davis

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Clifton Davis
Clifton Davis.jpg
Davis in 2007
Born Clifton Duncan Davis
(1945-10-04) October 4, 1945 (age 68)
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Occupation Actor, songwriter, singer, minister
Years active 1966–present
Spouse(s)
  • Ann Taylor (m. 1981–91)
  • Monica Durant (m. 2000)
Website
www.cliftondavis.com

Clifton Duncan Davis (born October 4, 1945) is an American actor, songwriter, singer, and minister. He starred on the television shows That's My Mama and Amen. Davis also wrote several hits for The Jackson 5, including "Never Can Say Goodbye" and "Lookin' Through the Windows".

Career[edit]

Davis was born in Chicago, Illinois, the son of Thelma van Putten Langhorn, a nurse, and Toussaint L'Ouverture Davis, a Baptist minister.[1] He was raised in Mastic, New York. In a piece he wrote for Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul, he described the racism he suffered growing up during the pre-Civil Rights Act era.[2]

Before finding fame in acting, Davis worked as a songwriter, most famously penning The Jackson 5's No. 2 hit "Never Can Say Goodbye".

Davis starred as barber Clifton Curtis in the mid-1970s television show That's My Mama with Theresa Merritt, Theodore Wilson and Ted Lange. Davis' romantic interest with songstress and Broadway performer Melba Moore led to his co-starring role on her musical variety television show.

Davis made a guest appearance on the third episode of the first season of The Bobby Vinton Show in September 1975, singing "I've Got The Music In Me" and "Never Can Say Goodbye". He successfully sang the Polish lyrics with Vinton to the show's "My Melody of Love" theme song.

A triple heart bypass survivor, he participated in the "superstars" celebrity TV sports competitions of the seventies, in addition to making several appearances on the popular 70s celebrity game show Match Game. He also appeared in the film Scott Joplin in 1977. He also made numerous appearances on several incarnations of Pyramid from the early 70s to the mid 80s.

From 1986 to 1991, he co-starred with Sherman Hemsley in the NBC sitcom Amen, which ran for four seasons. Davis released one acclaimed (and now hard to find) studio recording in 1991 on Benson Records titled Say Amen. He also played the mayor of Miami in the 1999 film Any Given Sunday.

Davis has continued his stage work, starring in Toronto and on Broadway in Aladdin, playing the Sultan of Agrabah.[citation needed]

Minister[edit]

Davis holds a BA in Theology from Oakwood University and a Master of Divinity degree from Andrews University.[3] For the last 25 years he has been an active part of Youthville, USA a children's services organization. He served as co-founder and co-pastor of Welcome Christian Center in Huntington Beach, California. Davis is a licensed minister by St. Luke Baptist Church, New York, New York. He has had an interdenominational ministry for over than 30 years. He has served as National Spokesperson and Advisory Board Chairman.[4] He is the emcee and host of The Most Soulful Sound, an annual gospel choir competition in Raleigh, North Carolina. He also hosts an annual celebrity golf tournament in Elizabeth City, NC at Elizabeth City State University, where he served as Vice Chancellor for Institutional Advancement. Since the end of 2005 Davis has held the position of Executive Director for Welcome America, a non-profit organization located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania that produces the largest Fourth of July celebration each year in the nation.

Davis is a frequent guest host on Trinity Broadcasting Network. Davis also hosted the Gospel Superfest TV show from 2000 to 2008, which is syndicated by United Television.

Davis is the author of an autobiographical essay entitled "A Mason Dixon Memory" in which he recounts his experiences as an eighth grader dealing with prejudice on a trip to a southern state.[5]

Filmography[edit]

Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1971 A World Apart Matt Hampton 1 episode
1972 The Melba Moore-Clifton Davis Show Co-host Series
1973 Love Story James Monroe Episode "A Glow of Dying Embers"
1973
1977
Police Story Mark Randolph
Ed Webber
"The Ho Chi Minh Trail"
"The Malflores"
1974–75 That's My Mama Clifton Curtis Main role (39 episodes)
1977 Scott Joplin Louis Chauvin Movie
1977 Superdome P.K. Jackson Movie
1977 Vega$ Leon Hazlett Episode: "The Eleventh Event"
1980 The Love Boat Mr. Reeves Episode: "Invisible Maniac"
1980 The Littlest Hobo Phil McLean Episode: "Licence to Steal"
1980 Don't Look Back: The Story of Leroy 'Satchel' Paige Cool Papa Bell Movie
1986–91 Amen Rev. Reuben Gregory Main role (110 episodes)
1990–94 Stellar Gospel Music Awards Co-host Specials
1993 The John Larroquette Show Con Artist Episode: "Pros and Cons"
1996 The Jamie Foxx Show Charles Episode: "Seems Like Old Times"
1997 Living Single Harrison Cushmore Episode: "Mother Inferior"
1997 Sparks Pastor Alexander Episode: "It's the Gospel"
1997 Malcolm & Eddie Leonard Larson Episode: "Club Story"
1997 Party of Five Martin Wilcox Episode: "Point of No Return"
1997 Grace Under Fire Dr. Swanson Episode: "Sam's Dad"
1997 The Sentinel President Lemec Episode: "Fool Me Twice"
1997 The Gregory Hines Show Pauley's Father Episode: "Three's Not Company"
1998 Any Day Now Councilman Lyle Hammond Episode: "No Comment"
1999 In the House Ted Miller 2 episodes
2000 City of Angels Dr. Langston Ellis Episode: "Bride and Prejudice"
2000–08 Gospel Superfest Host
2001 Lifestyle Magazine Host Series
2002 American Dreams Alvin Lewis Episode: "The Home Front"
2004 Half & Half Pastor David Adams Episode: "The Big Practice What You Preach Episode"
2012 Political Animals Reporter Episode: "Pilot"
2012 Mr. Box Office Judge Episode: "Pilot"
2013 The First Family Clayton Episode: "The First Triangle"

Film[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1999 Any Given Sunday Mayor Tyrone Smalls
2001 Kingdom Come Charles Winslow
2001 Max Keeble's Big Move Supt. Bobby 'Crazy Legs' Knebworth
2001 The Painting Thomas Ayers
2006 The Engagement: My Phamily BBQ 2 Uncle Joe
2007 Cover D.A. Simmons
2012 What My Husband Doesn't Know Franklin
2013 God's Amazing Grace... Is Just A Prayer Away Wilbert Richardson

References[edit]

  1. ^ [http:/.filmreference.com/film/60/Clifton-Davis.html Clifton Davis Biography (1945-)]
  2. ^ "Mason-Dixon Memory". Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul (pages 127-133).
  3. ^ http://www.cliftondavis.com/min_biography.php
  4. ^ "Bio". 
  5. ^ A Mason-Dixon Memory

External links[edit]