Donna Summer, affectionally called Queen of Disco, passed away on the 17th of May. She was 63 and died battling cancer.
While Donna Summer might be remembered most for her disco hits, Christianity had a profound impact on her life and music. She was brought up in a devout Christian family and began singing in church when she was eight-years-old.
"I opened my mouth and this voice just shot out of me. It shocked me and it shocked everyone in the room. I started crying and everyone in the room started crying and I heard the voice of God say, 'You're going to be famous and this is power and you are never to misuse this power,'" Summer told ABC News in 2008.
In 1983, Donna Summer had a born-again experience. Of this experience, she reportedly said, "Well, I was Christian my whole life, but I didn't really execute it -- I didn't live it. And I came back to realizing that without it I couldn't get through this stuff I had to go through. I need something that grounded me and it had to be really strong."
Michael Levine, Donna Summer's publicist, told CBSNews.com that Summer used to hold a weekly Bible studies class at her home.
Below is a sampling of some of her best gospel music:
DONNA SUMMER EXPRESSES HER GOSPEL ROOTS - RIDING THROUGH THE STORM
A YOLANDA ADAMS CLASSIC
Rejoice! - Gospel - Donna Summer (Live)
Rejoice! - Gospel - Donna Summer (Live)
A Song For You - Donna Summer (Live)
A Song For You / How Great Thou Art - Donna Summer (Live) 'A Song For You', originally written and performed by Leon Russell, became a signature song of the late great Donny Hathaway. The song has been covered by many outstanding artists including Ray Charles, The Temptations, and most recently Whitney Houston on her new CD. Here, Donna Summer blends this song along with the gospel classic, 'How Great Thou Art', reminiscent one of her great idols Mahalia Jackson.
Donna Summer-Heal Them
Donna Summer singing at an Easter Telethon Benefit! This was recorded in the early 1980's. What a voice! You can't get better than this! COPYRIGHTS GIVEN TO RESPECTED CREATORS! c
Forgive Me - Donna Summer (Live)
Gospel song 'Forgive Me' performed by Donna Summer (Live). This song won a Grammy in 1984 for Best Inspirational Performance. 'Forgive Me' was written by Reba Rambo McGuire and Dony Rambo from their Grammy winning album 'The Lord's Prayer'. The studio version by Summer was featured on the album 'Cats Without Claws' in 1984. The CD was produced by Michael Omartian ('She Works Hard For The Money').
Donna Summer, Amazing Grace Live in Nashville
Donna Summer sings Amazing Grace LIve in Nashville
Rest In Power - Donna Summer - Gospel Roots Tribute (1948-2012)
www.jaxsprats.com Jaxsprat's Unique Collectibles "If it's unique, we have it" www.ebay.com Like the King of Pop or the Queen of Soul, Donna Summer was bestowed a title fitting of musical royalty — the Queen of Disco. Yet unlike Michael Jackson or Aretha Franklin, it was a designation she wasn't comfortable embracing. "I grew up on rock 'n' roll," Summer once said when explaining her reluctance to claim the title. Indeed, as disco boomed then crashed in a single decade in the 1970s, Summer, the beautiful voice and face of the genre with pulsating hits like "I Feel Love," ''Love to Love You Baby" and "Last Dance," would continue to make hits incorporating the rock roots she so loved. One of her biggest hits, "She Works Hard for the Money," came in the early 1980s and relied on a smoldering guitar solo as well as Summer's booming voice. Yet it was with her disco anthems that she would have the most impact in music, and it's how she was remembered Thursday as news spread of her death at age 63. Summer died of cancer Thursday morning in Naples, Fla., said her publicist Brian Edwards. Her family released a statement saying they "are at peace celebrating her extraordinary life and her continued legacy." It had been decades since that brief, flashy moment when Summer was every inch the Disco Queen. Her glittery gowns and long eyelashes. Her luxurious hair and glossy, open lips. Her sultry vocals, her bedroom moans and sighs. She was as much a part of the culture as disco balls <b>...</b>
Donna Summer - The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting On An Open Fire - CD Version)
Donna Summer - The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting On An Open Fire) From The CD 'Christmas Spirit' by Donna Summer. Produced by Michael Omartian (She Works Hard For The Money). The Nat King Cole holiday classic, a staple of countless traditional Christmas albums, is given the royal treatment here by the queen herself, Donna Summer.
I'LL BE HOME FOR CHRISTMAS - DONNA SUMMER
I'll Be Home For Christmas - Donna Summer Taken from the CD 'Christmas Spirit' The CD was produced by Michael Omartian (She Works Hard For The Money) in 1994 and includes Summer's powerful voice matched with such classic songs as 'White Christmas', 'O Holy Night, a gospel medley of 'What Child Is This' 'Do You Hear What I Hear' and 'Joy To The World', plus 'Chestnut's Roasting On An Open Fire (The Christmas Song)', 'Christmas Is Here', 'Lamb Of God' and a stirring rendition of Amy Grant's 'Breath Of Heaven'.
O HOLY NIGHT - DONNA SUMMER (CHRISTMAS SPIRIT CD)
O Holy Night - Donna Summer Taken from the CD 'Christmas Spirit', Summer revamps this beautiful Christmas spiritual from the traditional to a full on gospel blowout in the end. The CD was produced by Michael Omartian (She Works Hard For The Money) in 1994 and includes Summer's powerful voice matched with such classic songs as 'White Christmas',a gospel medley of 'What Child Is This' 'Do You Hear What I Hear' and 'Joy To The World', plus 'Chestnut's Roasting On An Open Fire (The Christmas Song)', 'I'll Be Home For Christmas', 'Lamb Of God' and a stirring rendition of Amy Grant's 'Breath Of Heaven'.