"Disco queen" Donna Summer is back after 17 years

Fri May 16, 2008 11:53am EDT
 

By Michelle Nichols

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Donna Summer was dubbed "The Queen of Disco" after a series of hit singles in the 1970s: now the singer pokes fun at that title in a new song included in her first studio album in 17 years.

After raising three daughters, Grammy-winning Summer, who will turn 60 on New Year's Eve, returned to the studio to record "Crayons," which has a song titled "The Queen is Back."

"It's just kind of poking fun at the fact that this queen image has prevailed for so long," Summer, whose hits include "Hot Stuff" and "She Works Hard for the Money," said ahead of the album's release on Tuesday.

"It's having fun with it and saying I was out of the picture for a while but she's back," said Summer, who says on an Internet page she has sold more than 130 million albums.

Summer's career was crowned with five Grammy awards including best rock female vocal performance and best dance recording. She co-wrote all 12 songs on her new album.

"It's a box of crayons. Each crayon has a different stroke of color and each layer brings with it its own identity," she said. "Every song is designed to be a single."

But while Summer's album is hitting a market dominated by singers who "could be my daughters," she says she doesn't feel any competitive pressure.

"I don't compete with my own daughters, I encourage them," Summer said. "I don't think I need to restake my claim as such ... Whatever I get at this point in the game is all icing on the cake."

(Editing by Alan Elsner)

 
<p>File photo shows Donna Summer during the 13th annual Race to Erase MS gala in Century City, California April 13, 2007. Summer is set to release her first album in 17 years. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni</p>