Jimmy is just one of those people that was born in the wrong era. Actually only a fetus when Karen was working on this album in 1979. I don't think I've ever met anyone who has more love for the music of the disco era. In the 90's he even got an opportunity to spin a retro night at a gay club in Phoenix.
As for the disco album, this was really a controversial release. Herb Alpert the head of A & M considered it unreleasable. But you can hear for yourself and I highly doubt you'll agree with him. I think it was just a matter of the wrong time. By 1980 the labels didn't know what to do with disco. Not that a lot of great disco wasn't still being recorded but it was no longer holding 4 out of the Top 5 on the pop charts anymore. It's kind of like what I would imagine will eventually happen to EDM.
Most of the label heads were rock people anyway so I'm sure they were glad to push music they understood better, I mean even new wave was a type of rock though it was often so danceable that it owed just as much to disco as rock.
Apparently Karen put up $400,000 of her own money for the recording of this album with A & M only contributing $100,000. Even though it was produced by Phil Ramone the label still wouldn't release it.
Some of the songs in a remixed form appeared on The Carpenters' 1989 album Lovelines, released long after Karen died of anorexia.