The death of a music icon …
Donna Summer, the Queen of Disco has passed away at the age of 63. She passed away at her home in Naples, Florida after a long battle with cancer. How very sad, for those of you old enough to remember vinyl records and 8-track tapes, Donna Summer was the diva of diva’s of the 1970′s music era and the undisputed Queen of Disco. Donna Summer then went on to have a career beyond disco and had such 80′s hits as with “She Works Hard for the Money” and “This Time I Know It’s for Real.” TMZ is reporting that Donna Summer died of lung cancer which she and her family kept very secret and private.
We’re told Summer was in Florida at the time of her death. She was 63 years old.
Sources close to Summer tell us … the singer was trying to keep the extent of her illness under wraps. We spoke to someone who was with Summer a couple of weeks ago … who says she didn’t seem too bad.
In fact, we’re told she was focused on trying to finish up an album she had been working on.
Donna Summer: 1948 – 2012 … Rest in Peace
From the LA Times, much more on the life and times of Donna Summer.
An early fan of gospel singer Mahalia Jackson, Summer sang in a psychedelic rock band called Crow in the late 1960s. She left home for New York City at 18 and quickly landed a role in a touring production of the Broadway show “Hair.”
She spent the next three years living and touring in Europe. While there she met and married singer Helmuth Sommer, and took a variation of his last name as her stage name. In Europe she also met Moroder, whose early dance tracks were making an impact there.
“Love to Love You Baby” was their first hit together. A shortened version of it that was released in 1975 by Casablanca, then a hot label, peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard singles chart.
Her family released the following statement Thursday: “Early this morning, surrounded by family, 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. Words truly can’t express how much we appreciate your prayers and love for our family at this sensitive time.”
MTV Interview: Donna Summer Calls Singing ‘The Greatest Gift’ In 1989 … ‘Sometimes you can’t communicate in words, but in a song, you can.
“Music is part of my life. For my judgment, music is the greatest of all the gifts,” Summer told MTV News’ John Norris in a rare 1989 interview. “The voice — not my voice, but the voice — to me is the greatest gift. Having a voice. You need no other instrument, all you have to do is sing. Open your mouth, and it’s there.”‘
She will be laid to rest in Nashville, TN.