Donna Summer | News

Disco Queen Donna Summer Dead At 63

RIPDonnaSummerDonna Summer, the singer whose classics 'I Feel Love' and 'Last Dance' were the soundtrack for millions of disco-goers, has died.

TMZ reported this morning that 63-year old Summer passed after a battle with cancer.

Despite being loved by many gays for her hits, Summer had a complicated history with the LGBT community. In 1980, she reportedly told a crowd of gay people in her audience.

"I've seen the evil homosexuality come out of you people... AIDS is your sin," The Advocate quoted her as saying. "Now don't get me wrong; God loves you. But not the way you are now," she allegedly said. Years later, in 1989, she denied making the remarks. It was "a terrible misunderstanding," she wrote in a letter to ACT UP.

"If I have caused you pain, forgive mea terrible misunderstanding. I was unknowingly protected by those around me from the bad press and hate letters... If I have caused you pain, forgive me."

AFTER THE JUMP, one of Summer's greatest hits, "She Works Hard For The Money."

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  1. I loved her, the first and best concert I ever went to. She will be sorely missed.

    Posted by: Lankyguy | May 17, 2012 2:06:20 PM

  2. Rest In Peace Donna, how I lovingly recall roller-discoing to you in my garage.
    Bad Girls was the first album I ever got for my very own...can still remember my mom taking me to get it.
    And for what she did or didn't say about us gays...have none of us EVER made a mistake we regret.
    God bless you Donnna...your music helped me see the light in a very dark period of my life.

    Posted by: Alexander | May 17, 2012 2:08:16 PM

  3. So very sad. I love her music and have pretty much everything she has ever done. So sad I never got to see her live in person. RIP Donna. You will be missed very much.

    Posted by: OberonOZ | May 17, 2012 2:26:18 PM

  4. I was never more than a casual yet appreciative fan. But someone gave me tickets to see her at the Universal Amphitheater here in L.A. (sometime in the mid-'90's) - and though I scoffed and didn't expect much, Ms. Summer put on the most amazing show. I was so impressed and also realized how many of her songs I came to enjoy. RIP Donna Summer.

    Posted by: Zlick | May 17, 2012 2:33:45 PM

  5. I will always have a special place in my heart for her music, the soundtrack of my youth. What a voice! "Last Dace" actually was the last dance at my prom! what memories...

    Posted by: Ron | May 17, 2012 2:37:31 PM

  6. Way to go Andy, enrage the gay community. I'm sure you're very perfect yourself and nothing you've ever said in your lifetime has been taken out of context.

    Endless Summer !!!!

    Posted by: Maverick69 | May 17, 2012 2:38:31 PM

  7. Donna Summer's "On the Radio / Greatest Hits" is one of my most fondest albums as a kid. She is indeed, and will always be, the Queen of Disco! May Ms. Summer's family find some form of peace and comfort with the loss of an icon.

    Posted by: Jason R. | May 17, 2012 2:41:17 PM

  8. A powerhouse whose voice grew stronger as she aged - just check out her performances in the 2011 David Foster & Friends concert recorded for American Masters on PBS. Her music has always breathed new life into me when I needed it most. I'm so sad today.

    Posted by: DAVID | May 17, 2012 2:57:54 PM

  9. When I first came out I bought "I feel Love"(early-Trance?) and played it to death. A couple of years later in that heady summer of 1978 I found myself 2 row center at her concert where they recorded the live album. On certain tracks, on that album they picked up my hooting in the audience! Finally, I should never forget seeing her on a bright hot day in 78', Ice cream cone in her hand(from the drug store on Sunset), in her big blue cadillac going up my steep one lane street in the Hollywood Hills. Years later
    i heard about those awful remarks she supposedly made, and felt a real sting of betrayal. Yet still, She, like it or not, was one of the prime gay icons of that formative period, and would always be. So it hardly mattered if it was true her god gave her regrets. It is sad to hear shes gone, she was a bit of a touchstone to me in the strangest ways, and to so many other gay boys in those important moments in our history...Donna, I hope you feel Love...R.I.P.

    Posted by: Booka | May 17, 2012 2:58:50 PM

  10. RIP Donna Summer thanks for the dance floor memories. sob I am sad

    Posted by: hotbeef801 | May 17, 2012 3:06:34 PM

  11. Donna publicly refuted that statement years ago so let it go! Her music was timeless and much more than "disco". Half her catalog was pop music and loved her post disco music just as much. Im sure VH1 will be showing the concert they did with her in the late 90's or early 2000's since she passed away. She was AMAZING!

    Posted by: Tagg | May 17, 2012 3:06:54 PM

  12. Maverick can't you read you idiot? Andy did not post this entry. It was Andrew. Just like Pacquiao comments were taking out of context....yeah right.

    Posted by: Gonzo | May 17, 2012 3:08:04 PM

  13. I am one of the few gay men who hates dance music/disco. I was a child of the 80s and raised on indie-rock, progressive music, synth pop, New Wave, and grunge.

    And yet...

    I was stunned this morning when I heard the news. Donna Summer transcended her genre, much like Karen Carpenter transcended the cheesy AM-radio genre that was her brother's forte - and both because of their amazing voices. Sirius OutQ's Larry Flyck did an impromptu tribute to Ms. Summer at lunchtime and I realized nearly every song of hers he played I loved.

    And of course they played "Last Dance" and I flashed back to the late 70s and my family's first experience with HBO, which played "Thank God It's Friday" endlessly.

    What a loss.

    Posted by: CPT_Doom | May 17, 2012 3:14:10 PM

  14. Thank you Donna for making my voyage a little easier. I remember the days of dancing my ass off under that mirrored ball and thinking life was wonderful and the shear utter JOY of that the music. We thought it would never end, it did, for most of us are now in our 50's and 60's and risk a cardiac "incident" on a dance floor. But we still turn it up loud when we hear it on the radio and it takes us back to that "Last Dance" on a Saturday night.
    Rest in Peace, you will forever be our Disco Queen.
    But the dance goes on with the new gay kids who can come out and dance THEIR asses off

    Posted by: Iwontgrowup | May 17, 2012 3:15:26 PM

  15. Why you gotta focus on the negative man! One it was a rumor and Two she apologized for the rumor and Three, gawd help us all if we were eulogized by any of our missteps. She will be sorely missed. Before Madonna, there was Donna and the former would not have hit if the latter didn't blaze the trail first!!

    Posted by: Eddy | May 17, 2012 3:16:07 PM

  16. Donna, if you're sorry you said those things, I think most of us are willing to forgive you. If you weren't truly sorry, and if you merely adopted that faux-xtian drone about hating the sin and loving the sinner.....well, I think most of us would still feel sorrow at your passing, and pangs of sadness that you never truly understood the magnitude of the hurtfulness of those things you said.

    In any case, thanks for the music--it was a fun part of my adolescence, and even now I bust out Bad Girls and Hot Stuff every once in awhile for a jolt. And yeah, long before I started looking at men, I was looking at you. Funny how things work out, no?

    Posted by: Onetta | May 17, 2012 3:21:43 PM

  17. Toot-toot, ahhh, beep-beep.

    We loved to lova ya, baby.

    Posted by: Bad Girl | May 17, 2012 3:25:14 PM

  18. I'm pretty young.. I'm 24, was born in 1988, so I never really knew who she was until a few years ago... but I really only knew OF her, I didn't pay any attention to her.. but today, when I heard the news, I bought a couple of her albums and was shocked that I know and LOVE most of her songs, I just never knew it was her that sang them...

    Her music is timeless and she will be missed. RIP Donna :(

    Posted by: Lucas | May 17, 2012 3:34:43 PM

  19. Onetta nailed it.

    Posted by: Yeek | May 17, 2012 3:36:02 PM

  20. If you did cast a stone at us, we forgive you.

    But only because you paved our way to freedom!

    Rest in peace!

    Posted by: Brains | May 17, 2012 3:39:30 PM

  21. Some of you are quick to defend because she had a good disco beat, how sad. She was a born-again hater. Didn't even respond to the criticism of her evil words until years later.

    Posted by: Michael | May 17, 2012 3:55:24 PM

  22. Donna Summer's music made my teen years more bearable. RIP

    Posted by: Carlos | May 17, 2012 4:21:45 PM

  23. Of course, the last tune from Donna that I recall was Carry On. Her voice was pure and smooth. Put her and Giorgio together - and the music just flows.

    No one did for 'disco' what Donna did for disco. She took it from the "bump" and "funk" to mainstream with her hits at the top of the charts - in and out of the clubs.

    She will always hold a top spot with me.

    Posted by: Mark | May 17, 2012 5:42:46 PM

  24. Great singer- her classic songs will be forever link with gay history-may she rest in peace.

    Posted by: jaragon | May 17, 2012 6:02:57 PM

  25. Her Music was the soundtrack of my awakening of what and who I became.

    That Voice was a gift to all of us

    I am very sad today and will be cranking the
    Donna tunes tonight

    Posted by: Geoff | May 17, 2012 6:16:33 PM

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