A tape of the song was sent to Casablanca Records president Neil Bogart in the U.S. and he played it at a party at his home. Impressed with the track, Bogart continued to play it over and over all night. He later contacted Moroder and suggested that he make the track longer - possibly as long as twenty minutes. However, Summer again had reservations; she wasn't even sure of all of the lyrics. Nevertheless, she imagined herself as an actress (namely Marilyn Monroe) playing the part of someone in sexual ecstasy. The studio lights were dimmed so that Summer was more or less in complete darkness as she lay on the floor.
In the U.S., it became Summer's first U.S. top 40 hit, spending two weeks at #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in early 1976 and logged four weeks atop the Billboard U.S. disco chart, as well number three on the soul singles chart.
In the UK, upon release in January 1976, the song reached #4 on the UK Singles Chart in spite of the BBC's initial refusal to promote it. As a result of the success of the song, Summer would be named "the first lady of love," which labeled her with a sexually-oriented, fantasy image from which she would struggle to free herself.