Mac Aurthur Park 35 Years Ago This Week Donna’s First Number One

It is hard to believe that almost 35 years ago to this date Donna had here first of many Number One songs Mac Aurthur Park on the Billboard Charts (November 11,1978). With the New CD “Love To Love You Donna” and the release of Mac Aurthur Park off of the CD climbing up the dance charts currently now in 2013 (LaidBack Luke Mix) and as us Fans reflect back and new fans discover Donna for the first time, the Fan Club thought it was appropriate to mention and honor Donna on this day in commemoration of her achievement and the things to come. Donna must be smiling down on us.

On this day in 1978, Donna Summer’s “MacArthur Park” reaches the top of the Billboard Hot 100, giving the Queen of Disco her first #1 pop hit.

“MacArthur Park” was written in 1968 by Jimmy Webb, the hugely successful songwriter behind such familiar songs as “By The Time I Get To Phoenix,” “Wichita Lineman,” “Galveston” and “Up, Up and Away.” While working on material for the popular 1960s group The Association, Webb formed the idea to write a “cantata”—a complex, 22-minute-long piece with orchestral backing that would fill one entire side of the Association’s upcoming album. When the group rejected Webb’s cantata, he took its final movement, a seven-minute-long coda with utterly perplexing lyrics about lost recipes and cakes left in the rain in a downtown Los Angeles park, to Richard Harris, the British actor then dabbling in popular music. While readers of newspaper humorist Dave Barry would later vote Richard Harris’ version of “MacArthur Park” the “Worst Song Ever,” it was a #2 pop hit for Harris in 1967

Fast-forward 10 years, and Donna Summer found herself looking for new material to fill out the fourth side of her 1978 double-album Live and More. Having first made her name in American dance clubs with “Love To Love You, Baby”—17 minutes of oohs, ahs and mmms set to a hypnotic Giorgio Moroder instrumental track—Summer was more than open to recording Webb’s strange cantata. Edited down to three minutes and 45 seconds from an album version that stretched out toward nine minutes, the 45-rpm single of “Macarthur Park” was released in the early fall of 1978 and reached the #1 spot on the Billboard pop chart on November 11. For Summer, it was the biggest hit of her career to date and the first of her four total #1 pop hits



  1. Reply
    Joaquin Gutiérrez November 8, 2013 at 1:04 pm

    Her voice: A true wonder.
    She made ​​history and continues to surprise us

  2. Reply
    Grant Burnside November 8, 2013 at 1:11 pm

    I will never forget the sheer excitement when I first heard ‘Macarthur Park’ on the radio in my Gran’s house back in late September 1978. I had to wait for days to hear it again, and couldn’t quite believe what I was hearing. Even though it’s not composed by Donna, for me it remains my favourite recorded vocal of her entire career. She nailed it, and in doing so nailed it to the heart of myself and millions of others as it soared to the top of the world’s charts that Autumn.

    My Gran was sick whilst it climbed the charts, and she asked me to record it onto tape cassette for her, which I did three times in a row so she would not have to keep rewinding it. By the time it had got to number on in America she had died, aged only 62. I was eventually given back that cassette which I cherish to this day. She loved it and i’m sure during her last days she got some joy from listening to it. It remains incredibly poignant to me because of those circumstances and in Donna’s career it was pivotal in terms of her being taken more seriously as a singer of serious credibility.

    It was the first song I played when I had learned of Donna’s passing, and it brought a flood of tears for so many reasons.

  3. Reply
    JOHN RICHARDS November 8, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    What a great singer! I particularly like her duet with Barbra Streisland “No more tears”, but all the rest are great.

  4. Reply
    MARIO MARTINEZ November 8, 2013 at 2:28 pm

    Awesome voice and beautiful what more can you say !

  5. Reply
    Thomas Lang November 8, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    When I first heard it I couldn’t believe it. that this was Donna Summer!!! In 1978 I knew her from her sexy Songs. A childhood friend of mine got the single ! When she played it on her record player I said : What’s that ??. It’s sooo slow ! But then I heard this unbelievable voice the scream,the arangement the beat the orchestra ….. that is Donna Summer ?? From this day I fall in love with her ! This is my all time favorite song ! I got goosebumps every time when I play it !,,,

  6. Reply
    Angela November 8, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    I Love ALL her music but this one of my favorites!!!

  7. Reply
    Pepé November 8, 2013 at 9:26 pm

    “MacArthur Park” will always be my all time favorite song.

  8. Reply
    juan November 9, 2013 at 1:04 pm

    sería el primer numero uno en estados unidos, en españa ya fue anteriormente con a love trilogy y four seansons of love

  9. Reply
    Augielicious November 13, 2013 at 3:34 am

    She was a true Diva! May she rest in peace!

  10. Reply
    Thanos Discovios November 22, 2013 at 7:15 am

    I’m glad to hear that ” MacArthur Park 2013”,a remix from Love To Love You Donna album is climbing the dance charts (#22 this week). I always prefered Donna Summer’s version from 1978 than Richard Harris’ original version.Donna Summer’s superb performance elevated the song in heights still unmatched.I hope this remix to be her brand new number one song in US dance charts in a few weeks!Love you always Donna!

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