When Donna Summer passed away today at the age of 63, the world lost its undisputed Queens of Disco. During the year 1979, which was arguably the high point of the disco craze, she had five songs chart in the Billboard Top 40 (!!!), three of which — “Hot Stuff”, “Bad Girls” and “No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)”— made it all the way to #1.
Thanks to her incredible vocal range and an ability to appeal pop, rock and R&B audiences, Donna Summer was able to survive the disco implosion (a fate that a lot of her peers cannot claim). In fact, there was a 14-year span in which Summer had songs that made America’s Top 40, a period that began with the release of the sensually charged “Love To Love You Baby” in December of 1975 and closed in May of 1989 with her Top 10 single “This Time I Know It’s For Real.” And although her mass appeal dimmed as the Nineties dawned, she remained a vital creative force; she picked up a Grammy in 1998 for Best Dance Recording, which was just one of five Grammys she won during her legendary career.
While we mourn the loss of an American legend, we thought the best way to pay tribute to her incredible body of work was to put together the following Spotify playlist, which includes all of her songs that charted in the Billboard Top 40*.
Song: “Bad Girls”
Released: June 9, 1979
Peak Position: #1 for 5 weeks (15 total weeks in the Top 40)
Song: “Hot Stuff”
Released: April 28, 1979
Peak Position: #1 for 3 weeks (17 total weeks in the Top 40)
Song: “MacArthur Park”
Released: September 30, 1978
Peak Position: #1 for 3 weeks (15 total weeks in the Top 40)
Song: “No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)” featuring Barbra Streisand
Released: October 27, 1979
Peak Position: #1 for 2 weeks (13 total weeks in the Top 40)