Donna Summer: The Music Industry Remembers the Queen of Disco

Donna Summer 1976 - P 2012
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Donna Summer 1976 - P 2012

Quincy Jones, Nigel Lythgoe, Nicki Minaj and more remember the late singer, who died Thursday after battling cancer.

Five-time Grammy winner and disco legend Donna Summer died Thursday morning after battling cancer. She was 63-years-old.

"Early this morning, we lost Donna Summer Sudano, a woman of many gifts, the greatest being her faith," her family said Thursday, in a statement to THR. "While we grieve her passing, we are at peace celebrating her extraordinary life and her continued legacy. Words truly can't express how much we appreciate your prayers and love for our family at this sensitive time."

PHOTOS: Donna Summer's Life and Career

TMZ first reported the news, citing sources as saying Summer had been working on a new album.

News of her death sent shockwaves through the music industry with many speaking out in remembrance. Below, read what Quincy Jones, Nigel Lythgoe, Kelly Rowland, Nicki Minaj and more are saying about the late legend.  

Barbra Streisand

"I was shocked to hear about Donna. She was so vital the last time I saw her a few months ago. I loved doing the duet with her. She had an amazing voice and was so talented. .. It's so sad."

Janet Jackson

"We will miss Donna Summer! She changed the world of music with her beautiful voice and incredible talent."

Erykah Badu

"... Last dance , last chance , for love" - Donna Summer/ goddess

Nicki Minaj

Wow, another legend gone. Rest in peace to the beautiful disco queen Donna Summer.

Quincy Jones

Rest in Peace dear Donna Summer. Your voice was the heartbeat and soundtrack of a decade.

Kelly Rowland

Donna Summer. Icon! Legend! Her voice! Her spirit! Rest In peace, you truly inspired me! I love you!

Nigel Lythgoe

One of my favorite singers of all time, Donna Summer, is dead. She defined dance music in the 70's and had a wonderful voice and personality

Minyah Oh (Radio host WQHT NY)

RIP: #DonnaSummer, The Queen of Disco

Perez Hilton

Disco will never die! #DonnaForever!!! R.I.P. Ms. Summer!

Ryan Seacrest

I remember sitting in the front seat of my mom's toyota while she sang Donna Summer's "she works hard for the money" songs were just classic

Stephen Hill (President of Music and Special Programming, BET)

Not her biggest hit, but a powerful song showcasing her velvet-wrapped favorite. RIP Donna Summer  [Links to a video of 1977’s “I Love You”]

Adam Lambert

RIP Donna Summer. glorious disco Goddess.

Melanie Amaro

#RIP Donna Summer

Kylie Minogue

One of my earliest musical inspirations, RIP Donna Summer #BadGirlsForEver

Kylie Minogue

#TootTootHeyBeepBeep RIP Donna Summer



Gloria Estefan

Few singers have impacted music & the world like Donna Summer!It's the end of an era.Peace& prayers 2 all who loved her

ClaudeKelly (Songwriter for Kelly Clarkson, Jessie J)

What in the world?!?! Donna Summer has died? RIP to a LEGEND!!!! I'm shocked!!!

Dolly Parton

"I can't believe we've lost another wonderful singer. Donna, like Whitney, had one of the greatest voices ever. I loved her records. She was the disco queen, and will remain so. I knew her and found her to be one of the most likable and fun people ever. She will be missed and remembered." 

Gloria Gaynor

"I am deeply saddened personally for the loss of my dear friend Donna Summer. She and I have been friends for a very long time, we were both known as the ‘Queen of Disco,” but Donna always referred to me as the “First Lady of Disco.”  A fine lady and human being she was. She will be missed dearly by her colleagues, friends and family. She notonly made her mark in my heart as well as others, but she forever changed the way of how America danced and enjoyed themselves. She may have had her ‘Last Dance’ here on earth, but ‘Heaven Knows’ it is dancing with joy for her arrival."

When I was starting I toured frequently with Donna Summer as her opening act, I'll never forget the sheer power of her voice or her kindness

Jim Donio (President of music business association NARM)

“With the news of the passing of Donna Summer, we are marking another very sad day for the music business in what has become an all too frequent refrain the past several months. In 1979, when she was reigning supreme during the pinnacle of the Disco era, Donna performed at NARM and celebrated her success with her legendary mentor Neil Bogart of Casablanca Records. While it was before my time with the organization, I have heard so many stories about the ‘over-the-top’ party hosted by Bogart that year, at which Donna held court along with label mates The Village People. Donna’s music brought so much joy, energy and inspiration to so many people around the world during her award-winning career. Hearing her songs has and will always make me smile and want to start dancing. NARM expresses its deepest condolences to her family and friends.”

Kimberley Locke (American Idol finalist)

"Donna Summer gave us music that transcended the dance floor. I will always respect her music and most of all her powerful vocals. Thank you, Donna Summer, for paving the way for me and many others."

Twitter: @THRMusic