LEMON: I'm Don Lemon live in Los Angeles. We're following the very latest on the death investigation of the late Michael Jackson
. Hard to say those words. On the phone with me now is legendary singer Donna Summer, a close friend of Michael Jackson
. Thank you so much for joining us tonight. What was your relationship with Michael, Miss Summer? How did you know him?
DONNA SUMMER, SINGER (via telephone): Well, I met him years ago when I was working with Quincy, actually even before that. And he sang on one of my cuts off one of my albums. And, you know, over the years, his family came to see my shows, and I hadn't seen him lately in quite a while since I -- really since I started my family. I haven't seen him for a while. But I followed his career and have followed him and have loved him for an exorbitant amount of time.
LEMON: Yes, you've known him for a long time. Tell us, do you have a fond memory of him? What is your fondest memory?
SUMMER: One of my fondest memories is one day I was recording at Quincy Jones's house and he came by. And the kids were out on the front lawn, you know, they were playing on like the jumping thing. And when we went outside, he was outside playing with the kids, and it was just one of those sweet moments where he was just so vulnerable and human and so utterly down to earth and humble. It was a precious moment for me.
LEMON: You know, everyone has been answering this question, but you may have a better perspective on it, about his legacy, because you're in the music industry as well.
SUMMER: What do I think of his legacy?
LEMON: His legacy, yes.
SUMMER: Well, first of all, I think one would have to say that Michael Jackson
without question raised the bar on what we consider talent in the first place and on the perfection of what you were given as a talent. And I think his discipline -- in his level of discipline exceeded pretty much anybody I've ever met. So I just think that he, you know, if there's something or if there was a perfect performance, then Michael Jackson
LEMON: Is there anything on your heart or mind right now that he is gone?
SUMMER: Well, you know, it's just -- it's very difficult to imagine that there will be no more Michael physically walking around and that he will never sing another song or speak again. It's hard to grasp. You know, I have moments of just sitting down crying and my mind cannot really comprehend it yet, so I think I'm still trying to grapple with the reality of it.
LEMON: Yes, and you know what? People have been talking about the people around him, maybe taking advantage of him, you know. Did he pay the ultimate price of fame here, Miss Summer?
SUMMER: I don't know. I don't know if it's an ultimate price of fame, but I certainly think that he could have had wiser people around him. And I think whenever you're a celebrity or whenever you're a person that's in the public eye, it is easy to have hangers-on or whatever you call them and people who want to use and exploit you, and I think that's always a problem. I'm sure that somebody like Michael had a far more, you know, a greater chance of being taken advantage of. He was a sitting target. And so, I just feel -- you know, I feel more than anything for his family and I just, you know, send my condolences and my love to all of them. And I hope I'll see them before this is all over.
LEMON: Donna Summer, we appreciate it. Thank you so much for joining us and we wish you the very best.
SUMMER: Thank you very much. Bye-bye.