The song constituted the "future" segment of the album, which represented a stylistic progress through time. The title track of the I Remember Yesterday album represented the 1920s, "Love's Unkind" the 1950s, "Back in Love Again" the 1960s and the album concluded with the futuristic "I Feel Love". The song reached number one in the UK Singles Chart, number six on the Billboard Hot 100 in the US and number nine on the Hot Soul Chart. It quickly became popular in gay dance clubs and was adopted as a gay anthem. "I Feel Love" is ranked #418 onRolling Stone magazine's list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. "I Feel Love" was added to the National Recording Registry in 2012.
Before "I Feel Love", most disco recordings had been backed by acoustic orchestras although all-electronic music had been produced for decades. Giorgio Moroder's innovative production of this disco-style song, recorded with an entirely synthesized backing track, spawned imitators in the disco genre, and was influential in the development of techno.
The album version lasts for almost six minutes. It was extended for release as a 12" maxi-single, the eight-minute version included on the 1989 compilation The Dance Collection: A Compilation of Twelve Inch Singles. The song was slightly edited on the 7" format, the fade-in opening sound reaching maximum volume sooner. A version which fades out at 3:45, before the third verse and final choruses, has been included on a large number of greatest hits packages and other compilations issued by PolyGram, Mercury Records, Universal Music and others, such as 1994's Endless Summer: Greatest Hits and 2003's The Journey: The Very Best of Donna Summer.
Following the track's success, within months Summer and Moroder produced the 11-minute "Now I Need You"/"Working the Midnight Shift" sequence on Summer's 1977 double album Once Upon a Time, which successfully builds on "I Feel Love"'s pioneering ethereal vocals, mechanised beats, sequenced arpeggios and ostinato basslines.
|"I Feel Love (Patrick Cowley Remix)"|
|Single by Donna Summer|
|Format||7" single, 12" single|
|Donna Summer singles chronology|
In 1978, disco and Hi-NRG pioneer Patrick Cowley created a 15:45 remix of "I Feel Love" which, despite not impressing Moroder, became a popular "underground classic" available only on acetate discs. The remix used loops, keeping the song's bass-line going for extended passages of overdubbed effects and synthesiser parts.
In mid-1980, Cowley's mix was released with the title "I Feel Love / I Feel Megalove" and subtitle "The Patrick Cowley MegaMix", but only on a limited vinyl pressing by the DJ-only subscription service Disconet. Since this pressing was not available to the general public for commercial sale, it became highly sought after by collectors.
In 1982 the mix was released on a commercially available 12" single in the UK market by Casablanca, backed with an 8-minute edited version. With this wider release, "I Feel Love" became a dance floor hit again, five years after its debut. A further-edited 7" single reached #21 on the UK singles chart.
The Patrick Cowley mix is now available on the second ("bonus") disc of The Journey: The Very Best of Donna Summer.
The first cover was played by Blondie; there are recordings from 1978 to 1980, and one of them was used as a b-side to the Union City Blue 1995 remix release."I Feel Love" was covered byBronski Beat on their 1984 album The Age of Consent and released as a single by Bronski Beat featuring Marc Almond in 1985. British techno/acid house duo Messiah released theirbreakbeat version in 1992. It was also covered by violinist Vanessa-Mae in 1997. Australian pop singer Kylie Minogue included a mash-up of "I Feel Love" with her song Light Years during "KylieFever2002" Tour in 2002. In 2003, "I Feel Love" was performed live, released as a single and included on the The Complex album by Blue Man Group featuring Venus Hum. That same year, the Canadian livetronica band The New Deal included a version of the song on their second studio album, Gone Gone Gone. The song was also covered by the Red Hot Chili Peppers on their 2004 Live In Hyde Park album. The English shoegaze band Curve also recorded a version of the song for Ruby Trax: The NME's Roaring Forty in 1992. They re-released the track in 2004 on their The Way of Curve double CD. Madonna performed "I Feel Love" on her 2006 Confessions Tour, as a medley with her own track "Future Lovers", which was subsequently released on the CD and DVD The Confessions Tour as a live recording in 2007.
|"I Feel Love (The 1995 Remixes)"|
|Single by Donna Summer|
|Format||12" single, CD single|
|Donna Summer singles chronology|
Following 1993's The Donna Summer Anthology and 1994's Endless Summer: Greatest Hits, both released by PolyGram, "I Feel Love" was re-released on the PolyGram sublabel Manifesto in a newly remixed form as a single in 1995, including mixes by Masters At Work and Rollo Armstrong and Sister Bliss of UK remixer/producer team Faithless – and also new vocals by Summer herself. The single became a UK #8 hit, the second time the song had entered the Top 10, and the '95 Radio Edit was later included as a bonus track on PolyGram France's version of the Endless Summer compilation.
The song was again remixed and issued as a single in 2005.
In the UK, it reached No. 1 in the UK in July 1977, the remix reached No. 21 in December 1982, and the 1995 release reached No. 8 in September 1995, and sales of these physical singles totalled 956,400. Together with digital sales, it has sold 1.05 million copies in the UK as of November 2012.
In the US, the song reached No. 6 in the Billboard Hot 100 (chart date November 12, 1977), but only reached No. 45 on the Adult Contemporary chart. Its 1995 remix peaked at No. 9 on Hot Dance Club Play chart.