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. Every song she sang in the 70's and early 80's turned to gold because of her amazing voice.When I was in junior high (1983)she came back to Boston(her hometown)and the Mayor declared it "Donna Summer day" one day in May. I skipped school and went to go see her at her old high school. Awe-some! RIP, Donna.

    Posted by: pavelb | May 17, 2012 8:42:20 PM

  2. Hers was the first songs I heard scared walking into that first club. Still remeber when "Last Dance" was the last song they would play at closing time. RIP Donna...

    Posted by: greenfuzz | May 17, 2012 9:31:35 PM

  3. in the 70's I grew up in the mountains of Kentucky ..I felt alone,freakish, and sometimes hating myself so much as a teen I complicated suicide Donna's Music was almost like a it's gets better campaign it made me know that there was light, life and love somewhere far away under the strobe lights at a Disco "Late Night Flight LAX Limousine and your all set for Sunset".....No matter what controversy she had due to her beliefs I believed in her and I never look back Thank you Donna.. Dust off the Disco ball in Heaven The Queen is Coming.....

    Posted by: Jody | May 17, 2012 10:45:29 PM

  4. "If I caused you pain" IF? She actually caused her career to plummet after her homophobic remarks. She actually bit the hand that fed her. She spit on all the gay boys at the discos who loved her.

    Posted by: lucas | May 17, 2012 11:13:18 PM

  5. It's just too bad that she became an extreme, far-right Christian fundamentalist.

    But then, she was known for her singing, not her intellect. She didn't even finish high school; she dropped out two months before graduation, so with not even that minimal intellectual backing, the black and white thinking of far-right Christian fundamentalism would have appealed to her.

    Posted by: Randal Oulton | May 18, 2012 1:35:19 AM

  6. Every remix of I Feel Love will stay with me as Donna Summer brought generations of us out in a musical way. When I heard the news this morning It was just repetition with a certain remix of that wonderful tune all day. May Heaven enjoy your company and talent! We will miss you till we meet again.

    Posted by: Darrell | May 18, 2012 1:45:47 AM

  7. Love is a efficacious way victimized to successfully instructor any identify of computer - from inebriated state executives to prison inmates

    Posted by: funny love quotes | May 18, 2012 7:35:37 AM

  8. I saw her in concert about 10 years ago in Tampa. It was like old friends at a reunion- an aging audience with an aging icon on stage, and some younger people who couldn't possibly understand the bond there.

    As for those who hold grudges against her for real or imagined insults: I can't speak for you but I myself have said many things over the years which wouldn't play well in the press but are no measure of my charity or compassion. So grow up.

    Posted by: David Hearn | May 18, 2012 8:42:49 AM

  9. PS - Donna Summer had no one "best" song, because she produced in multiple genres. But the top of any list by a connoisseur would be :

    Adaptation - State of Independence
    Dance - This Time I Know It's For Real
    Ballad - Mac Arthur Park
    Slow - Winter Melody

    Posted by: David Hearn | May 18, 2012 8:49:59 AM

  10. So many memories. My partner and I cruised and danced to more than one of her songs the first night we noticed each other at a Probe party back in '79. There were quite a few others before him during the Seventies with whom I shared her for a dance, a night or longer once or twice. But after my guy, 'It Could Be Magic' belonged only to us. And it still does today - 33 years later!

    Posted by: drmikey | May 18, 2012 9:54:02 AM

  11. Rest in Peace my Queen.

    Posted by: Dave | May 18, 2012 10:11:10 AM

  12. When Bette Midler dies, she can join DS in Hell. We made them, then they crapped on us.

    Posted by: doodlebok | May 18, 2012 3:25:23 PM

  13. Donna Summer: "I never said that":

    Posted by: Jeff NYC | May 19, 2012 1:10:07 PM

  14. I'm very sorry Donna Summer is dead. She was my favorite singer. To me and other fans, we knew we had a great & VERSATILE singer in our midst. She sang each song differently and as she got older, her voice got stronger and she became a more successful singer, singing more emotionally than she had previously. I'm just very sad that after the "Homophobia debacle", you think she would have learned to become more compassionate along the way. But "No.". Interviewed by one of the free NYC gay rags while promoting her New "Crayons" album, she was asked her opinion on gay marriage. Now, while I agree EVERYONE HAS A RIGHT TO THEIR OWN BELIEFS, she replied that as a straight, married woman, she had no opinion one way or another on the issue. Huh ?!?!?!?!?? OK, due to her religious beliefs, I understand that she probably didn't approve. And one way for her to answer the question as diplomatically as possible was the approach she took. Look, she owed me nothing. I bought her music for purely "selfish" reasons, not to line her pockets. I loved her music, I didn't know her. In my opinion, she owed the gay community nothing. We bought her records for ourselves, not to do her a favor. It's just the thing that makes me sad is that after all the soul-searching she must've undergone, she never came to the realization that "Love is love." & "Different strokes...". I know it would have made me feel so much better if she came out of her experience with kindness & understanding. Instead... I was really shocked & disappointed concerning her noncommittal, safe & easy way out. I thought she would've grown in that area. There are many religious people, including priests & nuns who are supportive of gay marriages today. I'm sorry if this is coming across bitterly, I don't mean it to. I just want to say that Donna had a golden opportunity to make many people in the "LGBT" Community happy with her approval of same-sex marriage. It wasn't that long ago that her interracial marriage would not have been allowed in far too many states. I know she understood discrimination. Why couldn't she open her heart, I mean REALLY open her heart to people (fans or not) who were fighting to get married. Didn't she want people in love with each other, start families, be a part of the community, etc. She could've used her celebrity to help this cause. She chose not to. I'm not only sorry she has passed, but I'm sad that she stayed steadfast to her principles even though she saw the pain it was causing.
    She (and her Lil gang, (Giorgio, Pete, Harold, Bruce, her sisters, etc.) leave us with seminal pieces of incredible genre-shattering music.
    Goodbye Mrs. Summer/Sudano.
    Peace to you all. She died FAR too early. She was even working on an album up to the last minute. A fighter to the end.
    I would love to say "Thank You." for making my life (Especially my teens) richer. You Rocked & covered so many genres of music. You were so much more than "The Disco Queen", a moniker you know she wasn't too comfortable with. She was/is "Label-Free".

    Posted by: Nychank | May 21, 2012 5:09:24 AM

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