Jessie Ware on Donna Summer
For Jessie Ware, the life and work of Donna Summer are an inspiration. She joins Matthew Parris and Pete Bellotte, who wrote and produced many of Summer's biggest hits.
Jessie Ware is a singer, songwriter and podcaster. Her latest, critically acclaimed, album, What's Your Pleasure?, draws inspiration from soul, funk, boogie, and disco - and, notably, the work of the Queen of Disco, Donna Summer.
Jessie joins Matthew Parris and Pete Bellotte, co-producer and co-writer of many of Donna Summer's biggest hits - I Feel Love, Love to Love You Baby, and Hot Stuff, among others - to explore the life and work of her musical heroine.
Jessie, Pete and Matthew discuss Donna's Protean vocal abilities, her eventful childhood and how post-war Munich provided the perfect environment to create some of disco's most momentous hits. Pete reveals how a three-minute demo of Love to Love You Baby became a seventeen-minute breakout hit and together they explore why disco has endured despite an early backlash. Jessie ponders whether life has changed for a woman in the music industry and reflects on Donna's personal legacy.
With additional contributions from Danyel Smith, author of Shine Bright: A Personal History of Black Women in Pop (published Spring 2021).
Produced in Bristol by Camellia Sinclair