Chairman of nominating committee says late disco diva should be honoured next year

The chairman of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominating committee has said he regrets that Donna Summer was never inducted.

Speaking to the New York Times yesterday, Jon Landau said: “There is absolutely no doubt that the extraordinary Donna Summer belongs in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame”. He added:

Regrettably, despite being nominated on a number of occasions, our voting group has failed to recognize her – an error I can only hope is finally and permanently rectified next year.

Elton John said this week that the snub was a “total disgrace. especially when I see the second-rate talent that has been inducted.”

Disco singer Summer died yesterday at the age of 63. Famous for hit singles including ‘I Feel Love’, ‘Love To Love You Baby’ and ‘Hot Stuff’, she passed away in Florida after a lengthy battle with cancer.

Summer was born in Massachusetts in 1948 and began her career as a backing singer for 1970s trio Three Dog Night. She released her first solo album in 1974 and hit Number One in the UK in 1977 with the groundbreaking Giorgio Moroder-produced ‘I Feel Love’.

Inspired in her early teens by Motown girl groups such as The Supremes and later by the likes of Janis Joplin, Summer pursued a career in entertainment and landed roles in several musical productions in Europe as well as work as a studio session singer.

She found chart success in 1975 with her single ‘Love To Love You Baby’ – famed for its racy intro which featured her moaning suggestively – which was a Top 5 hit in the UK. It also paved the way for her US breakthrough when an extended version of the single, re-titled ‘Love To Love You Baby’, reached Number Two in the US charts while the 1976 album of the same name sold over a million copies.

Summer released a slew of albums in quick succession throughout the ’70s and became one of disco’s most successful artists following the success of albums such as 1977’s ‘I Remember Yesterday’ which included the iconic single ‘I Feel Love’, but she grew disillusioned with both the genre and her old record label Casablanca.

Summer released 17 studio albums in total, most recently 2008’s ‘Crayons’, which she promoted with a full world tour. She won five Grammys during her career, as well as a string of other awards.

She is survived by her husband, singer and producer Bruce Sudano, their daughters, Brooklyn and Amanda, and Summer’s daughter, Mimi, from a previous marriage.

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