Donna Summer, RIP


Donna Summer—a singer who dabbled in many genres but left her biggest mark on disco—has died of cancer at age 63. I don't have much to say about her that Alice Echols didn't already write in her great book Hot Stuff: Disco and the Remaking of American Culture, so I'll just point you to Echols' Donna Summer section: It starts right here, and it touches on topics ranging from Deep Throat to Operation PUSH, from Eurodisco to born-again Christianity. For the full experience, read it while listening to this:

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    1. +Last Dance

  1. I remember the summer of Donna Summer. Lookin’ for some hot stuff baby this evenin’. Classic.

    1. I always like Love to Love You Baby. I think that record was really the first techno record.

      Disco was awful in so many ways. But like every form of music, it could be pretty good when done by someone with enough talent.

    2. And Hot Stuff is a seriously dark song if you listen to it.

      1. I just love the rhythm of her voice in Hot Stuff, same thing with Love to Love You. Yeah, I was defintely not into the disco thing at all (hard to reconcile with Iron Maiden and Judas Priest:)), but I couldn’t help but like Donna Summer.

        1. I was into the same things. And I also, secretly couldn’t help but like Donna Summer. And Marvin Gaye for that matter too. Got to Give It Up is for my money the best disco record ever made.

          1. Yeah, Marvin Gaye was such an incredible talent. That was a real tragedy how he died.

    3. One of my first crushes.

  2. Does this mean disco is finally dead?

    1. As long as it remains in our hearts, to love or to hate, it will never die.

      1. Really never hated disco even in my metalhead phase because some really outstanding bassist found work in the genre, but modern club scene music and culture makes me want to destroy planets.

        1. I have a terrible weakness for House Music. My problem with clubs is that, in America at least, they play nothing but hip hop or some form thereof. And that always makes me want to jab my eyes out with a fork.

          1. Definitely a regional thing John. There are plenty of clubs that play only house (or another electro derivative), and if they do play hip hop it’s relegated to a side room or secondary floor.

            1. I need to find one before I get too damned old. House is fun.

    2. Nope.

      Disco is more or less still alive, in the form of House (and other EDM genres descended from Disco), while rock music has been killed and its corpse thoroughly beaten by the likes of Nickelback, Creed, and Green Day

  3. And hey Jesse, how come no love for the late great Chuck, the King of Go Go, Brown who died yesterday?…

    1. I haven’t seen any love for Donald ‘Duck’ Dunn either:…..ce/257177/

      1. There is your rule of threes. And they all are worthy of one another.

      2. Mea culpa. I did tweet some stuff about those two when they passed away, but I didn’t get around to doing blog posts.

        1. He was scheduled to play a ball my wife and I were invited to here in DC. We were pretty jacked about it. What a shame.

      3. Donald Dunn is dead? Poop. RIP.

  4. I can’t wait to see if Obama comments on her passing.

    1. His son could look like Donna Summer.

      1. His son could look like Donna Summer with bloody knuckles.

      2. The sad, pathetic thing here is, I could see our hip, swinging, beleaguered, “gay” PrezBo, offering some permutation of this trope.

      3. Not quite where I was going with this… That awkward moment latwer today when Obama gives credibility to this article.

  5. I still remember the album cover for “Bad Girls.” Made my 13-year-old body feel funny. The woman could sing, too — one of the few disco artists I could tolerate. RIP.

  6. Donna Summer — a singer who dabbled in many genres but left her biggest mark on disco —

    I mostly hated disco, but Donna could sing.

    After disco collapsed, she moved onto to other genres. Someone is in the press asked her about formerly being the queen of disco. She reacted poorly and sad was was never really disco. I wanted her to say that damn right she was the queen of disco and now she was going to be the queen of the next big thing.

  7. By the way Jesse, thanks for the remix. It’s brilliant.

    1. Blue Man Group does an “accoustic” version (with a guest singer) of this song that’s assume.

  8. You guys are bound and determined to have me masterbate to unzipped pants girl aren’t you? I mean I can only take so much. The red hair is not helping, that’s like kryptonite to me.

    1. Well it is national masturbation month.…..sturbation

  9. “Death Before Disco!”

  10. Her song, “I Feel Love” is pretty much the song that started Electronic Dance Music. While most of the credit goes to the producer, her vocals did play a big role in the song’s popularity.

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