The Legacy Of Donna Summer: My 5 Favorite Songs

Some sad news today… Music legend, Donna Summer has passed away today at her home in Florida at the age of 63. According to TMZ, she had quietly been battling breast cancer and trying to keep her illness under wraps. They had even spoke to her a couple weeks ago and she seemed fine.

The five-time Grammy Award winner was also working on a new album. Some of her biggest hits include “Last Dance,” and “She Works Hard For The Money” and she was referred to as the Queen of Disco.

She inspired so many people and so many other artists and her legacy will live on. So sad to see another great artist pass away. In her memory, I decided to list my five favorite Donna Summer songs below. Check them out and share your favorite song in the comments.

5. On The Radio

You may recall that Jennifer Lopez did her own take on the song not too long ago. The lyrics and concept of the song are brilliant and it’s certainly a compliment to Summer that her music continues to live on today.

4. Hot Stuff

Such a naughty/fun song that has been featured in countless movies. Before this song was released, Summer had only been seen as a disco singer. But since this song had significant rock influences including a guitar solo by ex-Doobie Brother and Steely Dan guitarist Jeff “Skunk” Baxter, people saw a different side of her.

3. Bad Girls

The inspiration for this song actually came from one of Summer’s assistants who was offended by a police officer who thought she was a street prostitute. This song along with “Hot Stuff” became her most successful singles.

2. She Works Hard For The Money

Another song that was featured in so many movies during the “comeback” montage. It’s certainly one that has stuck with me as one of her standout singles (of which there are many).

1. Last Dance

This is such an epic song and definitely my favorite. Summer acted in a film called ‘Thank God It’s Friday’, playing a singer determined to perform at a hot disco club. “Last Dance” was a song made for the film and it reached number three on the Hot 100 and resulted in Summer winning her first Grammy Award. With that, let us be reminded that any given dance and any given day could be our last, so we should appreciate it and enjoy every second of it. RIP Donna Summer and best wishes to her close friends and family.

Donovan’s Two Cents

I absolutely adore and cherish Donna Summer and couldn’t let this iconic singer pass away without giving my two cents. I can’t even begin to share all my wonderful memories listening to her songs growing up. Donna you will be missed. RIP.

When I read Patrick’s Top 5 Donna Summer tracks, surprisingly they lined up with mine with exception to No. 5. I would’ve swapped out “On The Radio” for any of these tracks. See if you agree.

MacArthur Park

I wasn’t a fan of this until I saw the West End production of “Priscilla Queen of the Desert” in London. Now, I might have to place it in my Top 5. Plus Manila Luzon killed it during her “lip sync for your life” battle on RuPaul’s Drag Race

Enough Is Enough

A duet with Barbra Streisand. Enough said.

Love To Love You Baby

The original recording was 17 minutes long and became Donna’s first disco hit. It became one of the first ever disco hits to also be released in an extended form The lyrics and moaning were considered very explicit.

This Time I Know It’s For Real

This would become Donna’s last Billboard Top 10 hit. It was produced by the British Stock Aitken & Waterman team. The same ones who gave us Rick Astley’s iconic hit, “Never Going To Give You Up“.

Which Donna Summer Song Is Your Favorite(s)?

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  • Aqua

    RIP 🙁 whats happening to all these Golden Stars.. First Whitney and now Donna .. Soo sad … As we grow older we are losing the most important treasures of the music industry…

    My Fav Songs are:
    She workd hard for the money
    Love to love you baby
    Hot stuff

    I listen to these a lot BUT other songs are quite nice too …

  • Bitter Lemon

    Loved her 2008 album ‘Crayons’. It had some amazing dance tracks. Take a listen and I bet you’ll love ‘Fame (the game)’, ‘The Queen is back’ and ‘Stamp your feet.’
    RIP Disco Diva x

  • Tyrell

    I too loved Crayons. Stamp Your Feet was my anthem that summer. Fame (The Game) is also great. The music industry truly lost a great legend. May she rest in peace.

  • Rob

    OMG you totally forgot I feel love
    it’s an all time anthem!!

  • czahn

    just read a little story about the recording of “enough is enough” with barbra striesand, that featured in the liner notes of one of her greatest hits albums as told by donna summer. She recalls on the first take of the song, as they were about to get to the climax of the song and they both hit that top note, donna summer momentarily fainted due to lack of breath for holding onto the note for so long….only out for a few seconds, she came to, only to see barbra still holding her note. then for her to finally turn to see if her mate was ok. lol

  • Patrick

    i agree with rob. “i feel love” is my favorite of her work. although “enough is enough” is amazing also. love me some Babs.

  • Donny

    One of the greatest female vocalists of all time. Period.

  • Eric Henwood-Greer

    My all time favorite singer–I’m just glad I got to see her in Vancouver during her Crayons tour. One of the few disco acts who had great singles but also fantastic albums–her double concept album Once Upon a Time, a disco updtae of Cinderella is fantastic from start to finish despite generating no cross over hits–here’s one of the highlights which also shows off Giogio Moroder’s groundbreaking synths (speaking of which, what, I Feel Love–a song they still play at clubs and has probably been ripped off more than any other dance song–didn’t make the cut?

    Now I Need You/Working the Midnight Shift