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Thread: Donna Summer :: Charts & Sales History

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    by » Sun March 14th, 2010, 21:05

    Have asked and been granted permission privately by automatic for an all-time thread for Donna, so hopefully it should be okay to put this on the forum.

    Firstly,some information about her, again, to save a lazy so and so like me from a lot of work, here is the Wikipaedia entry for this diva:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donna_Summer

    And, what the hell, I will stick with wikipaedia for her sales discography as well:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donna_Summer_discography

    As you can see, her singles were perhaps a little more successful than her albums, although the Bad Girls album was a big success, good sales for a double album especially.

    As usual, I tend to be more interested in an act's music than their sales figures, as regular readers of my posts on here will know by now. I feel that she is perhaps a forgotten diva, certainly when compared to Diana, Madonna, and other females who flirted with disco music in the seventies and eighties. She had a great style, great voice, song writing talent, and often innovative records. Who can ever question the creativity and production prowess of this classic:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k8TBmeK9Abg

    Such a unique and fresh sound at the time, kind of like the disco equivalent to the Beach Boys Good Vibrations!

    And she continued to make good records through the seventies and eighties, she actually gave Stock Aitken and Waterman their biggest ever international hit with this offering:


    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YehXWZHvQeo

    Memories of late eighties nightclubbing for me!

    She continued to make solid stuff over the next few decades, but, as stated, I feel she is somewhat of a forgotten diva, the only mention of her on here, as far as I can remember, was for her "Crayons" work of some two years ago.

    She deserves mention on these forums, for her performances, innovations, records, and sales - a coloured female disco star at the time when, arguably, it was not fashionable to be one.


    Bless you, Donna!
    They did not sell many, but they were one of the best - God save the Kinks!

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    by » Sun March 14th, 2010, 21:12

    One of the all-time greatest female singers. Period.

    I seriously adore this lady - yes, lady. She flirted with music in a sexy, elegant, classy fashion. And she put 100% into her performances. Like Cyndi Lauper, she experienced a career renaissance with her latest album - Crayons. Why? Because it was a masterpiece.

    Her singles are a must hear for any open minded fan of music, and especially for any fan of disco/70's/80's pop. If you're ever going to bridge the gap between the 50's-present day, Donna is one of the few artists (in my opinion, and in context of how many artists have appeared over the years) that it is imperative you listen to.

    She's absolutely gorgeous, to this day. Innovative diva!

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    by » Sun March 14th, 2010, 21:17

    Thanks 04wayne, can't disagree with anything you have said there. Good man!
    They did not sell many, but they were one of the best - God save the Kinks!

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    by » Sun March 14th, 2010, 21:19

    She used to be big in Argentina and most Latin American countries. Probably the best selling act of the second half of the 70's.

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    by » Sun March 14th, 2010, 21:27

    One of my most favourite divas of all time

    Are you going to post sales here or just links?

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    by » Sun March 14th, 2010, 21:29

    Quote Originally Posted by HUR
    She used to be big in Argentina ann most Latin American countries. Probably the best selling act of the second half of the 70's.
    Mostly argentina

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    by » Sun March 14th, 2010, 21:47

    As always with an act from this era, its best to kick off with official numbers before some of us begin posting our estimations...

    DONNA SUMMER RIAA:

    Love To Love You Baby - Gold
    Love Trilogy - Gold
    Four Seasons Of Love - Gold
    I Remember Yesterday - Gold
    Once Upon A Time - Gold
    Live And More - Platinum
    Bad Girls - 2x Multi-Platinum
    On The Radio, Volume I & II - 2x Multi-Platinum
    The Wanderer - Gold
    Donna Summer - Gold

    = 8.5m certified

    Her actual US shipments are double this and more. A very under certified lady.

    DONNA SUMMER BPI:

    The Very Best Of - Silver
    The Best Of Donna Summer - Gold
    Another Place & Time - Gold
    On The Radio, Volume I & II - Gold
    Bad Girls - Silver
    Live & More - Gold
    Greatest Hits Of Donna Summer - Gold
    Once Upon A Time - Silver
    Love Trilogy - Gold
    I Remember Yesterday - Gold
    Four Seasons Of Love - Silver
    Love To Love You Baby - Gold

    = 1,040,000 certified

    Much like the US, she's uncertified (a given really).

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    by » Sun March 14th, 2010, 22:08

    Donna Summer's album sales suffered because she was so prolific at releasing albums in her heyday (1976-1980) that hardly any of her albums had a chance to be properly promoted (that is over a length of time of more than just a few short months) or to have a proper shelf life. She released 10 albums in the UK and 9 in the US in her 1976 to 1980 heyday and these albums appeared on various labels which further reduced the potential for sales. These 10 albums produced at least 22, possibly up to 25, singles in the UK!

    Prolific is an understatement...

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    by » Mon March 15th, 2010, 10:07

    Thanks for the replies so far, everyone, I thought this thread might get some good input, and so it has proved. And thanks for the data, pity she could not have sold more albums, one reason has already been given by Robbie, I would also guess that disco singles were held in higher esteem in the seventies than albums, in spite of the success of the Saturday Night Fever album.

    As far as I am concerned she should be as big as, say, the Whitney Houston's of this World, her contribution to music has, in my view, been overlooked somewhat.
    They did not sell many, but they were one of the best - God save the Kinks!

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    by » Tue March 16th, 2010, 14:12

    Quote Originally Posted by Robbie
    Donna Summer's album sales suffered because she was so prolific at releasing albums in her heyday (1976-1980) that hardly any of her albums had a chance to be properly promoted (that is over a length of time of more than just a few short months) or to have a proper shelf life. She released 10 albums in the UK and 9 in the US in her 1976 to 1980 heyday and these albums appeared on various labels which further reduced the potential for sales. These 10 albums produced at least 22, possibly up to 25, singles in the UK!

    Prolific is an understatement...
    Robbie, do you know what was the reason for such a quick succession of records? It seems rather strange - to release a couple of full-format albums in the 70's or 80's was the usual thing whereas now, for example, Lady Gaga can promote her album for a third year and now losing in popularity (no offence to her, mind)

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    by » Tue March 16th, 2010, 19:17

    Quote Originally Posted by Passing_Strang
    Quote Originally Posted by Robbie
    Donna Summer's album sales suffered because she was so prolific at releasing albums in her heyday (1976-1980) that hardly any of her albums had a chance to be properly promoted (that is over a length of time of more than just a few short months) or to have a proper shelf life. She released 10 albums in the UK and 9 in the US in her 1976 to 1980 heyday and these albums appeared on various labels which further reduced the potential for sales. These 10 albums produced at least 22, possibly up to 25, singles in the UK!

    Prolific is an understatement...
    Robbie, do you know what was the reason for such a quick succession of records? It seems rather strange - to release a couple of full-format albums in the 70's or 80's was the usual thing whereas now, for example, Lady Gaga can promote her album for a third year and now losing in popularity (no offence to her, mind)
    She released albums in different styles which often made for a quick turnaround in production and release - from albums of disco suites and lengthy versions of one or two tracks to live albums, greatest hits and conventional studio albums! As well as being a prolific recording artist she had a producer and arranger who was a workaholic and who worked hard to have the tracks ready for Donna to perform on.

    Out of all those 10 album releases she only ever released two conventional studio albums - conventional being a one disc album consisting of a few songs on each side. As for her other albums, two albums were Greatest Hits (on different labels), one was a live double album with one side of new studio recordings, three albums were basically extended versions of a small handful of songs and of course her other two albums were double studio albums, something that wasn't the norm for most acts (especially non rock acts) at the time.

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    by » Tue March 16th, 2010, 22:03

    surprised no Soundscan numbers were posted since practically her entire discography's sales are available online up to 2003 (and many of these albums have been deleted since so they're pretty close to current numbers for most of the old albums outside of Bad Girls and Live And More).

    http://www.donna-tribute.com/news/soundscan.htm

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    by » Wed March 17th, 2010, 00:57

    Why can't Donna just produce a Vegas show now or somewhere specific where she can preform and not have to tour?

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    by » Wed March 17th, 2010, 20:24

    Quote Originally Posted by NothingFails
    surprised no Soundscan numbers were posted since practically her entire discography's sales are available online up to 2003 (and many of these albums have been deleted since so they're pretty close to current numbers for most of the old albums outside of Bad Girls and Live And More).

    http://www.donna-tribute.com/news/soundscan.htm
    Thanks for those figures, nothingfails.
    They did not sell many, but they were one of the best - God save the Kinks!

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    by » Thu March 18th, 2010, 17:55

    According to a Whitney Houston's fans website, Donna is the forth most successful black female vocalist of all-time, just on the basis of US/UK releases - you have to scroll down through all the Whitney Houston stuff to get to the relevant table:

    http://www.whitney-info.com/chart-positions/

    That's not bad, considering how many great black female singers there have been over the years (Whitney, Aretha, Diana, Dione Warwick, Beyonce, etc etc).

    The same website puts her in about 8th place when it comes to all-time most successful female vocalists, again on the basis of UK/USA releases.
    They did not sell many, but they were one of the best - God save the Kinks!

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    by » Fri October 29th, 2010, 20:15

    Donna'sTo Paris With Love is no.1 on Billboard's Hot Dance Club Songs this week

    This gives her at least one no.1 on this chart (or its predecessors) in the 1970s, 1980s, 1990, 2000s & 2010s - that's five decades

    Can't wait for the two new albums (one of standards, the other a dance album)

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    by » Fri October 29th, 2010, 21:29

    Amazing

    Number 1 in 5 decades is nothing short of sensational.

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    by » Fri October 29th, 2010, 22:18

    Les Ventes par Artiste de 1955 à fin 2009:

    #126 Donna Summer

    Albums: 2 794 700
    Singles: 1 620 000
    Total: 4 414 700
    I'd build a road in gold just to have some dreaming

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    by » Sun October 31st, 2010, 00:59

    Quote Originally Posted by remiell
    Les Ventes par Artiste de 1955 à fin 2009:

    #126 Donna Summer

    Albums: 2 794 700
    Singles: 1 620 000
    Total: 4 414 700
    Thanks for the updates, remiell. Much appreciated!

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    by » Fri June 10th, 2011, 20:39

    Any sales figures of her last album Crayons?

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    by » Fri June 10th, 2011, 20:49

    Quote Originally Posted by Star
    Any sales figures of her last album Crayons?
    Last number I saw in the US for Donna's Crayons was 69,000 [Nov. 2009]. I can't imagine its sold much more than this. 100k shipped in the USA tops. It didn't make any impact whatsoever anywhere else in the world - worldwide shipments of 150,000?

    Such a shame, as this album is absolutely AMAZING; just like Bring Ya To The Brink was for Cyndi Lauper!

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    by » Fri June 10th, 2011, 21:03

    I was just having a Donna-thon <3 Crayons was great.
    To Paris With Love is excellent - especially the Wawa Remix!
    I wonder if she's recording...

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    by » Sun January 1st, 2012, 01:19

    Back in the 70's Donna's label was also very sneaky with hiding her sales supposedly.
    That's one of the problems she ended up having with them.

    I have read Bad girls was 3x Platinum.
    On The Raido and Live and More were 2x Platinum.
    I believe she had an additional 7 Gold albums to.

    In the Disco era 12in singles were also big.
    She had a quite a few go gold and platinum.
    Platinum was 2 mill back then for singles.
    Gold was 1 mill.

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    by » Sun January 1st, 2012, 10:07

    Quote Originally Posted by Lewis17
    Can't wait for the two new albums (one of standards, the other a dance album)
    More than a year on, still waiting ...

    Donna will apparently feature on a track titled 'Angel', by her nephew O'Mega Red, which is scheduled to be released in the first half of 2012.

    Belated Happy Birthday for yesterday, Donna

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    by » Sun January 1st, 2012, 12:10

    USA SINGLES

    Love To Love You Baby
    6.12.1975: 55-45-27-15-11-9-7-4-3-2-2-4-11-15-29-37-66-97

    Could It Be Magic
    1.05.1976: 85-74-64-52-52

    Try Me, I Know We Can Make It
    10.07.1976: 88-84-80-80

    Spring Affair
    18.12.1976: 80-70-70-60-60-58-52-47

    Winter Melody
    12.02.1977: 88-77-66-56-46-43

    I Feel Love
    6.08.1977: 86-64-52-44-40-29-23-16-14-13-9-8-7-7-6-12-16-28-51-57-65-65-100

    I Love You
    17.12.1977: 87-77-77-63-52-47-40-37-37-51-80

    Rumour Has It
    4.03.1978: 83-73-61-55-55-55-53-68-100

    Last Dance
    13.05.1978: 85-75-67-38-29-23-20-17-13-10-5-4-4-3-3-10-20-46-55-98-98

    MacArthur Park
    9.09.1978: 85-75-50-25-21-11-8-4-2-1-1-1-2-2-10-15-15-38-56-97

    Heaven Knows (& Brooklyn Dreams)
    13.01.1979: 77-40-26-18-17-15-11-6-5-4-4-4-14-26-30-64-98-98-94

    Hot Stuff
    21.04.1979: 79-29-20-3-2-2-1-2-1-1-2-3-3-3-4-9-9-19-43-71-100

    Bad Girls
    26.05.1979: 55-46-28-11-5-3-2-1-1-1-1-1-4-5-11-21-31-52-98-98

    Dim All The Lights
    25.08.1979: 70-57-46-39-27-19-10-8-6-4-3-2-2-4-8-19-36-50-50-98-98

    No More Tears (Enough Is Enough) (& Barbra Streisand)
    20.10.1979: 59-33-10-7-3-1-1-2-6-8-8-21-24-38-94

    On The Radio
    12.01.1980: 86-49-35-16-14-9-7-6-5-5-6-16-22-31-42-86-95

    Walk Away
    13.09.1980: 82-60-49-42-40-36-36-52-66-82-97

    The Wanderer
    20.09.1980: 43-30-21-18-11-7-6-5-3-3-3-13-36-37-60-60-60-66-73-93

    Cold Love
    29.11.1980: 81-72-61-54-41-41-37-33-33-43-51-76

    Who Do You Think You’re Foolin’
    21.02.1981: 84-74-64-53-43-40-40-51-59-82-97

    Love Is In Control (Finger On The Trigger)
    26.06.1982: 79-65-51-36-27-23-16-14-12-12-12-12-11-10-59-85-94-95

    State Of Independence
    2.10.1982: 70-59-49-45-43-41-41-80-91-95

    The Woman In Me
    18.12.1982: 78-60-60-55-48-44-42-40-39-37-33-33-33-62-91-97

    She Works Hard For The Money
    28.05.1983: 67-55-42-34-30-25-18-14-10-8-3-3-3-4-5-7-11-18-24-34-73

    Unconditional Love
    3.09.1983: 82-69-61-52-47-43-43-92

    Love Has A Mind Of Its Own (& Matthew Ward)
    14.01.1984: 86-82-70-96

    There Goes My Baby
    11.08.1984: 59-47-42-37-33-30-26-23-22-21-33-55-78-97

    Supernatural Love
    10.11.1984: 84-77-75-75-92

    Dinner With Gershwin
    22.08.1987: 85-76-62-58-55-50-48-54-61-76-99

    This Time I Know It’s For Real
    22.04.1989: 88-57-45-41-28-23-16-14-9-7-7-14-22-40-51-65-82

    Love’s About To Change My Heart
    16.09.1989: 89-85-98

    When Love Cries
    17.08.1991: 92-80-77-77-93

    Whenever There Is Love (& Bruce Roberts)
    7.12.1996: 122-116-x-109-125

    I Will Go With You (Con Te Partiró)
    24.07.1999: 85-83-79-79-79-79-79-87-99

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