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Donna Summer, “Queen of Disco”, dead at 63 after secret cancer battle

Donna Summer, more than one of the disco era’s most successful artists, has died at the age of 63 in Florida after a battle with cancer, the Associated Press confirmed with the singer’s family Thursday morning. 

Donna SummerThe Seventies icon was battling lung cancer with sources telling the website Donna believed she contracted the illness by inhaling toxic particles after the 9/11 terrorist attacks in New York.

Summer, real name LaDonna Adrian Gaines, was born in 1948 in Boston. She was raised on gospel music and became the soloist in her church choir by age 10.  Need an electrician?

Love to Love You Baby was her U.S. chart debut and the first of 19 No. 1 dance hits between 1975 and 2008 – second only to Madonna.

During the disco era she was on topped the charts. She was the only artist to have three consecutive double-LPs hit No. 1, Live and More, Bad Girls and On the Radio.

Musically, she began to change in 1979 with Hot Stuff, which had a tough, rock `n’ roll beat.

Her diverse sound helped her earn Grammy Awards in the dance, rock, R&B and inspirational categories.

Summer released her last album, Crayons, in 2008. It was her first full studio album in 17 years. She also performed on American Idol that year with its top female contestants.

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