Disco diva Donna Summer dies at 63
Friday, May 18, 2012
Summer's family gave the following statement: "Early this morning, we lost Donna Summer Sudano, a woman of many gifts, the greatest being her faith. While we grieve her passing, we are at peace celebrating her extraordinary life and her continued legacy."
Her first hit was the 1975 track BBC., which was banned by the
The 1977-produced single pioneered the use of synthesisers. told upon hearing the song, "I've heard the sound of the future".
After disco's popularity wound down, Summer moved across genres, with the 1979 songearning her a Grammy Award for best rock vocal performance. She said of this: "I am actually the first woman — not black woman — but woman, period, to get a rock-and-roll Grammy".
Donna Summer also appeared in the 1979 movie, and her performance of the song Last Dance earned her an for best song.
Her popularity in the gay community was threatened in the 1980s after it was reported that she had made anti-gay remarks at a concert, specifically that "AIDS is the result of your sins". In 1989, she told the gay magazinethat she did not make the statements she was reported to have made, and expressed regret at the loss of friends to AIDS: "I never said, ‘If you are gay, God hates you.’ Come on. Be real. I don’t understand that. Anybody who really knows me knows I wouldn’t say that."
Summer was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1948 as LaDonna Adrian Gaines. She learned she could sing in her church's gospel choir and then in musicals. In 1973, she married an actor she had met in Austria, Helmuth Sommer, from whom she gets the name "Summer". Before her divorce in 1975, Summer gave birth to Mimi Summer. Five years later, she remarried to Bruce Sudano, a musician, who fathered two daughters, Brooklyn and Amanda.
- Paul Toohey. "Disco legend Donna Summer dead at 63" — , May 18, 2012
- "Donna Summer, queen of disco, dies at 63" — , May 17, 2012
- "Obituary: Donna Summer" — , May 17, 2012
- Jeremy Kinser. "Donna Summer: The Music Legend Dies At 63" — , May 17, 2012
- Jeremy Kinser. "EXCLUSIVE: Donna Summer Denied Making Antigay Remarks That Hurt Her Career" — , May 17, 2012
- Alexander Baron. "Op-Ed: Donna Summer RIP (1948-2012)" — , May 17, 2012