Sunderland's season has lift-off after a record sixth derby win on the spin gave Sam Allardyce's his first victory in charge of the Black Cats.
Allardyce followed the pattern of his three predecessors to grab a derby win in his second game at the helm, as the hosts broke their duck for the campaign to move off the basement.
Sunderland were completely outplayed during the first half, but were handed a penalty on the stroke of half-time, in an incident which saw Newcastle skipper Fabricio Coloccini sent off.
Adam Johnson's converted it with ice-cool composure to net his fourth goal in six games against Newcastle.
Allardyce's side remained nervy in the second half, with Costel Pantilimon producing a superb save, but they grabbed an unassailable two-goal lead when unlikely hero Billy Jones netted his first in a Sunderland shirt.
And then with three minutes to go, Sunderland sealed the points after a devastating counter-attack saw Younes Kaboul pick out Steven Fletcher to volley home.
Newcastle had the first opportunity three minutes in, when Coloccini's acrobatic volley was pushed away by Costel Pantilimon from Jack Colback's inswinging free-kick.
The Magpies remained firmly on top, as they keep possession comfortably, with Pantilimon fortunate not to concede midway through the first half after Daryl Janmaat's chipped ball over the top found Jack Colback.
The ex-Sunderland midfielder scuffed a volley, which Pantilimon spilt behind, just the wrong side of the post.
Sam Allardyce was forced to make a couple of first half changes, with Ola Toivonen (groin) and John O'Shea (hamstring) both forced off through injury, with Sebastian Coates and Jermain Defoe introduced.
Pantilimon was called into action again on the stroke of half-time, when he tipped over Georgi Wijnaldum's dipping free-kick from the edge of the area.
But in first half stoppage time, the game turned on its head as, Sunderland took the lead completely against the run of play, while Newcastle were reduced to 10 men.
Defoe threaded a lovely through-ball for Fletcher to run onto, and as the Scotland international got into the area, he was nudged off the ball by Fabricio Coloccini.
Referee Robert Madley pointed to the spot, before Coloccini was shown a straight red card.
Johnson stepped up and with Sunderland's first shot on target, converted it into the bottom right-hand corner.
Despite their numerical disadvantage, Newcastle should have levelled within 10 minutes of the restart when Ayoze's Perez's pass deflected off Lee Cattermole into the path of Aleksander Mitrovic.
The striker sold DeAndre Yedlin with a dummy, but then saw his shot brilliantly kept out by Pantilimon from 10 yards out.
But in the 65th minute, Sunderland doubled their lead from a corner routine.
Johnson's delivery from the left, was superbly volleyed back into the six-yard box by Yann M'Vila at the back post, and Jones helped it over the line from point-blank range.
Newcastle didn't raise the white flag though, Wijnaldum drawing another excellent save out of Pantilimon low to his right.
At the other end, the woodwork denied Johnson a second when he cut inside off the right and a left-foot shot towards the far top corner, which beat Rob Elliot, but crashed back off the bar.
But with four minutes to go, Sunderland did seal victory after a devastating counter-attack stemming from Kaboul winning a tackle midway inside his own half.
Kaboul sprinted forward and received a return pass down the left flank, from where he sent in an inch-perfect cross to the far post where Fletcher converted.
Sunderland: Pantilimon, Yedlin, O'Shea (Coates 37), Kaboul, Jones, Cattermole, M'Vila, Toivonen (Defoe 36), Johnson, Lens (Larsson 82), Fletcher. Subs not used: Mannone, van Aanholt, Gomez, Watmore.
Newcastle: Elliot, Janmaat, Coloccini, Mbemba, Dummett (Thauvin 78), Colback (Anita 49), Tiote (Lascelles 46), Sissoko, Wijnaldum, Perez, Mitrovic. Subs not used: Woodman, Cisse, De Jong, Haidara. Booked: Tiote (14), Colback (45). Sent off: Coloccini (45)