We already brought you part one of our list of 15 things you probably did not know about Donna Summer, and now we’re back with part two! Check out eight more riveting details about the singer, songwriter, and painter’s life that you definitely (probably) did not know below. You might be surprised by what you find out!
Number Eight: She Was Accused of Making Some Controversial Anti-Gay Remarks. During the AIDS outbreak of the 1980s, Summer made some remarks that negatively affected her career. She allegedly implied that people who got AIDS were being punished by God for being homosexual. However, she denied accusations that she ever said these things.
Number Seven: She Holds a Grammy First. In 1998, Summer became the very first recording artist to receive a Grammy for “Best Dance Recording.”
Number Six: She Found Peace in Nashville. In 1994, Summer moved her whole family, including her two daughters, to Nashville, Tennessee. It was there that she began to take up painting as a hobby.
Number Five: She Has a Lot of Awards. Over the course of her career, Summer won five Grammy awards, 12 Grammy nominations, six American Music Awards, two Golden Globes, and one NAACP Image Award. She was also the first African-American woman to be nominated for an MTV Video Music Award.
Number Four: Her Family Made Fun of Her. Though Summer was lauded for her fashion, her sensuality, and her general sex appeal, her family actually teased her about her looks. They even made fun of her voice and clearly were not very supportive.
Number Three: There Is an Interesting Story Behind the Making of “She Works Hard for the Money.” Summer was reportedly inspired to write her hit, “She Works Hard for the Money,” after seeing a sleeping bathroom attendant. She then wrote the song on a piece of toilet paper.
Number Two: Her Friends Called Her “The Queen.” According to Summer, “It started off as a joke, but now they do it, and it just sounds like part of my name.” All hail the Queen, Donna Summer!
Number One: She Was a Fan of Marvin Gaye. One of Summer’s favorite songs to sing was “What’s Going On,” by Marvin Gaye.