Nights at the Roundtable with a tribute to Donna Summer, who passed away earlier today. Her first hit, and the song that kicked it all off "Love To Love You Baby", from 1975
I admit, straight up, that I was never a fan of Disco. To me, it was when Pop Music took a bland turn. It felt over-produced, assembly-line and generic.
That said, there was a lot of talent that came out of that genre. And the one who kicked it all off was Donna Summer. Summer was a great singer, whose talent went a lot further than Disco, but became almost synonymous with the movement and, as is often the case with mainstream music, became pigeon-holed as a result.
That Summer became The Queen Of Disco was more of an accident than a plan. Her breakout hit Love To Love You Baby, the song that started everything, was initially a demo produced by Electronica whiz Giorgio Moroder, who was already established in Europe as a purveyor of Italian Power-Pop and had released an album and several singles here in the U.S., to not much success. In Europe he was another story, and when he tinkered with a sound that included elements of heavy strings, synthesizers, and a relentless metronomic beat, topped off with sexy lyrics, it became a natural for the dance clubs that were already popular throughout Europe. And what had been initially a demo track with American ex-Pat living in Berlin, Summer on vocals, got reworked, extended into a 16 minute magnum opus and got its initial release in Holland and Love To Love You Baby introduced the world to Donna Summer and never looked back.
Tonight it's the 7" long(er) version of the song, not the 16 minute full-on orgy.
But you still get an idea what the fuss was about. So as a tribute to the wonderful singer and artist who left us way too early, here is Donna Summer and a reminder of what 1975 sounded like.