Doug Supernaw, the singer behind “I Don’t Call Him Daddy” and “Reno,” died Friday (Nov. 13) after battling Stage IV lung and bladder cancer. He was 60 years old, and had been in hospice care since October.
Supernaw was diagnosed with Advanced Stage IV lung and bladder cancer in February of 2019, at which time he began treatment; however, the cancer then spread to his brain and spine. Supernaw’s record label shared the news of his death around 11AM ET on Friday, via Facebook, noting that he “passed away peacefully” at his Texas home.
A Bryan, Texas, native, Supernaw grew up listening to two of his main influences; George Jones and Gene Watson. Upon moving to Nashville in 1987, he found work as a session songwriter.
A three-year run of chart success for Supernaw began in 1993 with the No. 1 hit “I Don’t Call Him Daddy,” a song written by Reed Nielsen and originally recorded by Kenny Rogers. Supernaw’s rendition of a song about a divorced father learning that his ex’s boyfriend will never replace him in his young son’s heart inspired a music video co-starring the singer’s real-life son, former NFL player Phillip Supernaw.
A changing mainstream landscape and personal struggles derailed Supernaw’s career by the turn of the century. However, a recent comeback found Supernaw re-recording old favorites and sharing two new songs, “The Company I Keep” and “Here’s My Heart,” for a 2017 greatest hits collection.
“B&G Music / B&G Records will always cherish our time with Doug, and are honored to be a part of Doug’s return to the studio and stage,” the statement notes, concluding, “‘This fadin’ renegade’s made his last stand …,'” a reference to the title track of Supernaw’s 1999 album.
Supernaw is survived by his third wife, children and grandchildren. Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.
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