Donna Summer has become the archetypal Disco Queen, defining the ’70s disco explosion. Beyond that, Donna Summer ranks among the most elite performers of all time, having sold over 100 million records worldwide.
Few, if any, of Donna Summer’s contemporaries had her masterful range, raw power and masterful storyteller.
Donna Summer also holds the unique distinction of being the first artist signed to David Geffen’s start-up label, Geffen Records, in 1980.
Years earlier, Donna Summer was paying her dues, singing back-up for groups like Three Dog Night. During these sessions, she met producers Giorgio Moroder, the producer who eventually launched her to super stardom.
In the summer of 1975, Donna Summer re-approached Moroder; she had an idea for a song, with the lyrical hook “love to love you, baby.” Moroder, in turn, suggested the infusion of some orgasmic vocals. The rest was history.
“Love To Love You Baby” was Donna Summer’s sounding call in the U.S. and became her first big hit in America. It reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in early 1976 and becoming her first Number-One Hot Dance Club Play chart hit.
In 1979, Donna Summer released her landmark double-album Bad Girls. The album quickly spawned three million-selling singles: the back-to-back #1 hits “Hot Stuff” and “Bad Girls”, and the #2 hit “Dim All The Lights”. “Bad Girls” also became Donna’s first #1 song on Billboard’s R&B singles chart.
“Hot Stuff” won Donna Summer a Grammy for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance.
Bad Girls became Summer’s second #1 album and the most successful of her career, selling over three million copies in the US and an estimated ten million worldwide.
Donna Summer’s first compilation, On The Radio: Greatest Hits Volumes 1 & 2, was an international successs and went to #1 in the U.S. The album also went multi-platinum.
The album also contained one of the all-time great duets – “No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)” with Barbra Streisand . It also became a million-selling #1 single, and the Grammy-nominated The album also offered the Top Five Gold hit “On the Radio”, a song written for the film Foxes.
Donna Summer has stated that the song she’s most proud of if “Last Dance.” Go anywhere in the world today, and the DJ is likely spinning Donna Summer’s signature song to wrap up the party.
On September 20, 2004, Donna Summer was among the first artists to be inducted into the Dance Music Hall of Fame.
To date, Donna Summer has received 5 Grammy Awards and 6 American Music Awards, as well as 24 gold and platinum certifications in the United States and 19 gold and silver certifications in Great Britain.
Donna Summer plans on releasing Crayons, her first album of new material in 17 years, in the summer of 2008.