TORONTO — Influential music supervisor David Hayman, whose credits include TV’s Schitt’s Creek, Letterkenny and Ginny & Georgia, and last year’s Robbie Robertson/The Band documentary Once Were Brothers, died May 19 at age 42. The cause of death was heart failure, according to members of Hayman’s family and several friends in the industry.
As founder and creative director of Supergroup Sonic Branding and vice president of the Guild of Music Supervisors Canada (GMSC), he worked closely with managers, artists, publishers and the film, TV and advertising industries, many of whom are expressing their grief on social media this week.
His co-workers released a collective statement Wednesday on Facebook, writing, “Yesterday, we said goodbye to our fearless leader Doc David Hayman.When he created the Supergroup, he created a family based on passion, curiosity, authenticity and a pinch of crazy. An incredible talent with an even bigger heart, David leaves behind not only an impressive legacy of work, but also leaves his mark on the people of the film and music industry. Thank you all for your continued support. Follow your passions, keep it authentic and please be kind to one another.”
They ended with “big love,” Hayman’s frequent sign-off.
Hayman was both a cinephile and music historian, whose career as a music supervisor dates back to the early 2000s, with two dozen episodes of the TV series The Eleventh Hour. He went on to place music in such films as The Whistleblower, The Bang Bang Club, Born To Be Blue and Giants of Africa doc; and TV shows Kim’s Convenience, Saving Hope, Nirvanna: the Band the Show, Rookie Blue, Less Than Kind, Todd and the Book of Pure Evil, and the mini-series The Kids In The Hall: When Death Comes To Town, among countless others, giving scores of opportunities to independent bands and solo acts. He also was involved in award-winning advertising and Clio playlisting campaigns.
Outside of Supergroup, Hayman was also a part-time faculty member at Toronto’s Humber College, where he created mentorship opportunities for emerging artists, curators and music supervisors. He became vp of the Guild of Music Supervisors Canada when it was established in 2017.
GMSC president Michael Perlmutter expressed his condolences on behalf of the industry in this statement: “The Canadian music community — and hundreds more around the world — are devastated and saddened by David’s sudden passing. He was a force of nature and a fierce, passionate advocate of music. He was a unique voice in our industry, which we will hear for years to come. We extend our deepest condolences and many physical distancing hugs at this time to his wife Ali, and daughter, Ruby – and to his incredibly talented work family, Supergroup.”
A GoFundMe campaign to help Hayman’s family can be found here. “Our hope is that this fund will help Ali and Ruby so that, with the incredible hardship they are going through right now, their financial needs will not be a burden for some time,” said organizers.