TMZ reports that disco legend Donna Summer died this morning after a battle with cancer. Sources tell the site that the singer passed away in Florida and was trying to keep her illness under wraps as she finished work on a new album. Her family has issued a statement saying they “are at peace celebrating her extraordinary life and her continued legacy.”
Summer became a gay icon in the 1970s thanks to the orgasmic disco song “Love To Love You Baby” and “I Feel Love,” a ground-breaking, Giorgio Morodor-produced synth number that influenced the sound of club music in the years to come. She later scored hits on the pop charts with “Hot Stuff,” “Bad Girls,” “She Works Hard for the Money” and “Last Dance.”
In the early 1980s she was famously dogged by a controversy surrounding allegedly homophobic remarks until she mounted a campaign to clear the air, performing at several AIDS benefit shows. She released 17 studio albums over four decades and her most recent, Crayons, came out in 2008.
“Love To Love You Baby”
“I Feel Love (Live)”