Donna Summer the singer on some of the greatest pop singles of the 70s has died at 63 of cancer.

In a statement Donna Summer’s family said they “are at peace celebrating her extraordinary life and her continue legacy“.

A statement read: “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. Words truly can’t express how much we appreciate your prayers and love for our family at this sensitive time.”

According to US gossip site TMZ, she had been keeping the extent of her illness under wraps – and was currently working on a new album.

Donna Summer – real name LaDonna Gaines – was a five-time Grammy winner who was famous for hits like ‘Hot Stuff’ ‘Bad Girls’ and ‘Last Dance’, and with the Giorgio Moroder produced ‘I Feel Love’ was responsible for one of the finest and most enduring tracks of all time – the single was a UK hit in the late 70’s, 80’s and 90’s as well as being both endlessly remixed and covered by a huge range of artists including Marc Almond, Bronski Beat, Curve and The Red Hot Chilli Peppers.

David Bowie has been quoted in respect of ‘I Feel Love’ – Bowie, then in the middle of recording of his Berlin Trilogy with Brian Eno, its impact on the genre’s direction was recognized early on “One day in Berlin … Eno came running in and said, ‘I have heard the sound of the future.’ … he puts on ‘I Feel Love’, by Donna Summer … He said, ‘This is it, look no further. This single is going to change the sound of club music for the next fifteen years.’ Which was more or less right…

In 1973 she married actor Helmuth Sommer before giving birth to a daughter Mimi a year later. The marrige ended in 1975 but she kept his name, just changing one letter.

She married ‘Brooklyn Dreams’ singer Bruce Sudano in 1980 and they had two daughters together (Brooklyn in 1981 and Amanda a year later).

She was living in Florida with Bruce when she died this morning.

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Phil Newall is 47, from The Wirral - he earns his living not writing about music nor playing music...though sorely wishes he could. He was fortunate enough to see many of the first generation punk bands when they played the U18's matinee shows at Eric's, Liverpool. As an attendee at Eric's he was exposed to punk rock, dub reggae, art rock, and all manner of weirdness; as a customer at Probe Records he was variously served and scowled at by Pete Wylie and Pete Burns - he has written for Record Collector, Whisperin & Hollerin, and Spiral Scratch and wanted to write a book detailing the Liverpool punk scene; however with 'Head-On' Julian Cope beat him to it...and frankly did a much better job.

1 COMMENT

  1. donna was the gary speed of disco – an average talente over-praised by death. she wasn’t ‘the queen of disco’ and she didn’t ‘invent house music’ as some clueless pop critics have claimed – she worked with some extremely talented producers (and pete waterman) and made the best of her decent voice yet went against her core fanbase, the very people who adored her and made her a star. sad news but let’s not carried away here, she was no loleatta holloway.

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