The Wanderer (Donna Summer album)

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The Wanderer
Donna Summer-The Wanderer (album cover).jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedOctober 20, 1980
ProducerGiorgio Moroder
Pete Bellotte
Donna Summer chronology
On the Radio: Greatest Hits Volumes I & II
The Wanderer
I'm a Rainbow
Singles from The Wanderer
  1. "The Wanderer"
    Released: September 1980
  2. "Cold Love"
    Released: November 1980
  3. "Who Do You Think You're Foolin'"
    Released: February 1981
  4. "Looking Up"
    Released: 1981
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic4.5/5 stars[1]
Robert ChristgauA−[2]
Rolling Stone4.5/5 stars[3]

The Wanderer is the eighth studio album by American singer-songwriter Donna Summer. It was released on October 20, 1980. The inaugural release of the Geffen Records label, it became a Top 20 album in the United States, with the title track reaching #3 on the Billboard Hot 100.

This album had been out of print but was re-released on December 9, 2014, on the Driven by the Music label (remastered/bonus tracks).


Summer had made her name the previous decade as the most successful female artist of the disco genre, releasing a vast selection of hit singles and albums on Casablanca Records. During this period however, Summer had felt that the label had exploited her and made her portray a sexually orientated image ("The First Lady of Love") with which she never felt comfortable.[citation needed] The label had also taken over other elements of Summer's personal life, to the point where she felt she had no control over her life or career.[citation needed] Having come out of a period of depression and rediscovering her Christian faith, Summer had made the decision to break away from Casablanca and file a lawsuit against them. After leaving Casablanca, Summer became the first artist to be signed to the newly established Geffen Records.

By 1980, banners reading "disco sucks" were seen everywhere and disco records became flops. Summer decided to leave the disco sound behind. The album was co-written and produced by Giorgio Moroder and Pete Bellotte, who had produced the vast majority of Summer's hits since their partnership with her began in 1974. Production for The Wanderer was rushed, Geffen wanted to get new product out because of Casablanca's plans to release Walk Away, another greatest hits collection. "We would have liked to do more tweaking, and have more time for production. But we just had to let it go," said Harold Faltermeyer about the recording of the album.

"Cold Love" gained Summer a Grammy nomination for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance. Summer's rediscovered Christian faith was documented in the gospel song "I Believe In Jesus", for which she also received a nomination for Best Inspirational Performance. As a child Summer had sung in gospel choirs, so this song was a chance for her to go back to her roots.

The album peaked at number 13 on the Billboard Album Chart – selling 600,000 US copies[citation needed] and the title track hit number 3 on the US singles chart. However, two follow-up singles – "Cold Love" and "Who Do You Think You're Foolin'" – barely reached the Top 40. The album and its singles attained limited success on the UK charts. None of the singles cracked the UK Top 40.

Track listing[edit]

Side one
1."The Wanderer"Donna Summer, Giorgio Moroder3:47
2."Looking Up"Pete Bellotte, Moroder, Summer3:57
3."Breakdown"Harold Faltermeyer, Bellotte4:08
4."Grand Illusion"Moroder, Summer3:54
5."Running for Cover"Summer4:01
Side two
6."Cold Love"Keith Forsey, Bellotte, Faltermeyer3:38
7."Who Do You Think You're Foolin'"Sylvester Levay, Jerry Rix, Bellotte4:18
8."Nightlife"Bellotte, Moroder4:00
9."Stop Me"Bellotte, Forsey3:44
10."I Believe in Jesus"Summer3:37


Weekly charts[edit]

Chart (1980) Position
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[4] 54
Japanease Albums (Oricon)[5] 22
New Zealand Albums (RMNZ)[6] 16
Norwegian Albums (VG-lista)[7] 18
Spanish Albums (Promusicae)[8] 8
Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)[9] 15
UK Albums (OCC)[10] 55
US Billboard 200[11] 13


Year Single Chart Position
1980 "The Wanderer" UK singles chart 48
US Billboard Hot 100 3
Sweden 9
1981 "Cold Love" UK single chart 44
US Billboard Hot 100 33
"Who Do You Think You're Foolin'" US Billboard Hot 100 40


Country Provider Certifications
United States RIAA Gold[12]


  1. ^ Carpenter, Bil. "The Wanderer > Review" at AllMusic. Retrieved 29 August 2011.
  2. ^ Christgau, Robert. "The Wanderer > Review". Robert Christgau. Retrieved 2011-09-24.
  3. ^ Marsh, Dave (March 19, 1981). "Donna Summer: The Wanderer : Music Reviews". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on 2007-12-09. Retrieved 2014-01-30.
  4. ^ "Longplay-Chartverfolgung at Musicline" (in German). Phononet GmbH. Retrieved March 8, 2016.
  5. ^ Oricon Album Chart Book: Complete Edition 1970-2005. Roppongi, Tokyo: Oricon Entertainment. 2006. ISBN 4-87131-077-9.
  6. ^ " – Donna Summer – AThe Wanderer". Hung Medien. Retrieved March 8, 2016.
  7. ^ " – Donna Summer – The Wanderer". Hung Medien. Retrieved March 8, 2016.
  8. ^ Fernando Salaverri (September 2005). Sólo éxitos: año a año, 1959–2002 (1st ed.). Spain: Fundación Autor-SGAE. ISBN 84-8048-639-2.
  9. ^ " – Donna Summer – The Wanderer". Hung Medien. Retrieved March 8, 2016.
  10. ^ "Donna Summer | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart. Retrieved March 8, 2016.
  11. ^ "Donna Summer Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved March 8, 2016.
  12. ^ Gold & Platinum: Searchable Database. Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved on 2010-07-22.