Love Is in Control (Finger on the Trigger)

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"Love Is in Control (Finger on the Trigger)"
Single by Donna Summer
from the album Donna Summer
B-side "Sometimes Like Butterflies"
Released 1982
Recorded 1982
  • 4:17
  • 3:43 (7" version)
Producer(s) Quincy Jones
Donna Summer singles chronology
"Who Do You Think You're Foolin'"
"Love Is in Control (Finger on the Trigger)"
"State of Independence"

"Love Is in Control (Finger on the Trigger)" is a Grammy-nominated single from Donna Summer's self-titled 1982 album.


Summer's 1980 The Wanderer album — the inaugural release on Geffen Records — had been certified gold in America although it did not enjoy numerous hit singles as some of her '70s releases had enjoyed. Summer had prepped her next album, I'm a Rainbow — a double set which continued her association with Giorgio Moroder and Pete Bellotte, but David Geffen, compelled by the need for what he considered a guaranteed smash, had shelved I'm a Rainbow and assigned Summer to record an album with producer Quincy Jones. Jones was a much sought-after producer at the time, particularly due to his association with Michael Jackson's album Off the Wall.

"Love Is in Control (Finger on the Trigger)" was the lead single off the Jones' produced album Donna Summer. It was written by Jones and Rod Temperton — who'd also written Jackson's "Rock with You". Summer reports that the recording process for this album was challenging, as she was pregnant at the time and unhappy over I'm a Rainbow' being shelved by Geffen Records.

The single was issued in three different versions: the 7" single release (3:42), the LP version (4:19), and a 12" single version (7:04). The 12" version features a "Dance Remix" on Side One and an "Instrumental Version Featuring Ernie Watts On Sax Solo" on Side Two. Both are remixes by Craig Kostich and Bruce Swedien.

Music video[edit]

A music video features Donna Summer dancing in a room full of pop art. She wore a black satin outfit to disguise her pregnancy as she was expecting her baby, Amanda Grace. The video also featured clips of Donna dancing during a photo shoot wearing a blue dress.


"Love Is in Control (Finger on the Trigger)" became a major hit, peaking at no. 10 on the US Billboard Hot 100 on the week of September 25, 1982, giving Summer her sixteenth top 40 hit,[1] and reaching no. 4 on the US R&B Chart. It was Summer's best R&B showing since "Bad Girls" in 1979—even using police whistles in the song as in "Bad Girls". Although the parent album was certified gold in the US, it did not produce any more major hits and did not prove the powerhouse album Geffen Records had hoped for.

Ironically, Summer would have her biggest success in the 1980s while on Geffen's roster with her next album She Works Hard for the Money and its title song — which were released by Mercury Records in a one-off arrangement to settle Summer's split with the soon-to-be-defunct Casablanca Records, whose catalogue now resided with Mercury and Casablanca's parent company PolyGram.

Chart performance[edit]


  • The B-side of the "Love Is in Control" 7" single, "Sometimes Like Butterflies", was a non-album track co-written by Summer herself. It was finally released on CD on the 2014 reissue and was also covered in 1985 by Dusty Springfield.
  • In 2001, Sheena Easton covered "Love Is in Control" on her Euro retro-disco album Fabulous. The track was intended as the second single from the album and a UK promo single was issued but the single's release was cancelled.
  • In 2012, Australian artist Deni Hines and The A-Funk Allstars released a version as a single.
  • In 2013, Chromeo and Oliver remixed "Love Is in Control (Finger on the Trigger) for the remix tribute album, "Love to Love You Donna".


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External links[edit]