In the 80s - Top Ten Lists of Eighties Songs
What are your top ten favorite songs from the 80s?
This page currently edited by: Quirk. Past editor: RetroGuyDK, Absolutely Vile, Junior
- 10. Sledgehammer by Peter Gabriel
You could have a steam train, a bumper car going bump, or a great song.
- 9. Physical by Olivia Newton-John
Let's get physical; the exercise way!
- 8. Sweet Dreams are Made of This by Eurythmics
Sweet dreams are made of great songs.
- 7. Hungry Like a Wolf by Duran Duran
I'm hungry like a wolf for awesome songs.
- 6. Like a Prayer by Madonna
I pray what happens in the video never happens to anyone.
- 5. Livin' on a Prayer by Bon Jovi
Now I'm halfway there.
- 4. Jump by Van Halen
This song gets me up.
- 3. Thriller by Michael Jackson
No mere mortal can resist the power of Michael Jackson's 80's stuff.
- 2. Photograph by Def Leppard
I don't need bad songs.
- 1. Take on Me by A-ha
This song takes me on.
Honourable mention goes to Another One Bites the Dust by Queen, Call me by Blondie, Billie Jean by Michael Jackson, and Like a Virgin by Madonna.
- 10. Bad to the Bone by George Thorogood
- 9. Sweet Emotion by Aerosmith
- 8. Crazy by Aerosmith
- 7. Johnny Be Good by Stray Cats
- 6. Barracuda by Heart
- 5. Sharp Dressed Man by ZZ top
- 4. La Grange by ZZ Top
- 3. For Those About To Rock by ACDC
- 2. You Shook Me All Night Long by ACDC
- 1. Back In Black by ACDC
- 10. Down Under by Men At Work
Great song; me and my sister always sing it when it comes on the radio.
- 9. Forever Young by Alphaville
Fantastic song that will always be remembered.
- 8. 99 Luftballoons by Nena
The powerful message of the song was sorta looked over cuz the melody was too catchy...still great to this day.
- 7. Boys Don't Cry by The Cure
I dunno....I just like the tune to it for some reason.
- 6. Safety Dance by Men Without Hats
Awesome song to dance to!
- 5. I Ran by Flock of Seagulls
Cool band, cooler hairstyles...hehe
- 4. Tainted Love by Soft Cell (one word or two?)
Always manages to get stuck in my head, so I figured it should be on the list.
- 3. Here I Go Again by Whitesnake
Great song, what more can I say?
- 2. Africa by Toto
I've loved this song since the very first time I heard it. It's truly a classic.
- 1. Come on Eileen by Dexy's Midnight Runners
This song is the best! Plus who doesn't love a song whose video has guys in overalls? haha
It was very difficult for me to come up with my personal top ten. The 80s was truly the best decade for music by far. I love almost all 80s music, and am proud to say so. Go 80s!
- 10. Don't You Forget About Me by Simple Minds
Hey Hey Hey Hey! Who doesn't love the Breakfast Club?
- 9. Everybody Have Fun Tonight by Wang Chung
When listening to this song, you are actually in the 80's. It's perfect.
- 8. Hungry Like The Wolf by Duran Duran
They make this list possible.
- 7. Video Killed the Radio Star by Buggles
Oh-wah-oh! Great beat. Fun. Innocent. There's that break after the second chorus that's all keyboard and drums. Great.
- 6. With Or Without You by U2
- 5. Friday I'm in Love by The Cure
Lyrically, it isn't the greatest. Kind of chessey actually, but musically it's just wonderful.
- 4. Take On Me by A-Ha
- 3. Let's Dance by David Bowie
He just may be the most unattractive man in the universe, but call me crazy.. he's so sexy!
- 2. Brass In Pocket by The Pretenders
Gota love Chrissie Hynde.
- 1. Dancing With Myself by Billy Idol
Never really liked any of his others. White Wedding is ok, but this is his best. In my opinion.
The Outfield-Use your love tonight..John Waite-I ain't missing you (I dont think a day goes by i don't hear that on the radio) Madonna- Material Girl.. Peter Gabriel- Your eyes.. INXS-Need you tonight...Soft Cell-Tainted Love..Journey, Men At Work, Modern English, Queen,Robert Palmer, Steve Winwood-Valerie, Thomas Dolby SHE BLINDED ME WITH SCIENCE!!!! and many more but im sure you already know them
By: Raul Omar Real Santillan
Yeah. Gloria of Laura Branigan, Time after Time whith Cyndi Lauper, I just like starting over of John Lennon, Squuare Rooms whit Al Corley, Blaze of Glory and Always and Bed Roses of Bon Jovi, We Dindt Start the Fire of Billy Joel, Every Bode wants to rule the world of Tears for fears, Rosanna of Toto, Relax of Frankie Goes To Hollywood, Gold of Spandau Ballet, Jump of Van Halen, your Love of The Outfield, Together Forever of Rick Astley, Eye of Tiger and Burning Heart of Survivor, The Final Countdown of Europe, Dancing My Self and Eyes Whitout A Face of Billy Idol, We Are The World of Several artists, Beat It and Thriller of Michale Jackson, Like A Prayer and La Isla Bonita and Vogue and Like A Virgen and Material Girl and Papa Dont Preach of Madonna, Last Chrismas of Wham, I just called To Say I Love You, Stevie Wonder, Total Eclipse Of The Heart of Bonnie Tyler, Walk Like And Egyptian of Bangles, HOw Soon Is Now Of The Smiths, On our Own Of Bobby Brown and Several great Song
- 10. Tempted by Squeeze
Ah, the early 80's
- 9. Heat of the Moment by Asia
I remember roller-skating to this one.
- 8. Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) by Eurythmics
Someone recorded this before Manson?
- 7. Rio by Duran Duran
One of the styliest videos- and a stylish song to boot
- 6. Hot for Teacher by Halen
Sit down, Waldo!
- 5. Hold Me Now by Thomson Twins
All 3 of them
- 4. Jeopardy by Greg Kihn Band
Popular satire- Weird Al's "I Lost on Jeopardy"
- 3. (I Always Feel Like) Somebody's Watching Me by Rockwell
W/ Mike Jackson backing-up
- 2. Come on Eileen by Dexy's Midnight Runners
- 1. Leave It by Yes
"Owner of a Lonely Heart" was more popular, but this song's video had 10+ versions. Very '80s!
This list is just to complement what is already on this page. No particular order, and definately not an exhaustive list.
- 10. Roxanne by The Police
Didnt chart the charts but still a great song.
- 9. With Or WithOut You by U2
Bonos first love/anti love song with a great video to go along with it.
- 8. Take On Me by A-ha
The first music video to use rotosopic animation tenqiues with real life images as seen in the video for Incubes-Drive that came out in 2000.
- 7. Sexy At 17 by Stray Cats
Stray cats I love them and them jazzy beats.
- 6. Lucky Star by Madonna
Shes my 1 and only idol and I adore her and her work shes the queen of pop.
- 5. I'd Die For You by Bon Govi
A heavy metal band not afraid to express their feelings.
- 4. Rebel Yell by Billy Idol
- 3. True Colors by Cyndi Lauper
Horrible music video great song.
- 2. Mr.Roboto. by Styx
Admit it you love this song.
- 1. Last Christmas by Wham!
Finally a boyband with talent! Sure they had cheezy videos cheezy songs but atleast they were good. And so what George Micheal and Andrew Ridegly looked like girls and dressed and acted like them they still managed to have good songs.
Men at works who can it be, Need you tonight INXS.
Subject to change, but these are current favourites
- 10. Everytime I See You by Fra Lippo Lippi
saturation airplay in the RP in the late 80's but didn't tire of it
- 9. Feels Like Heaven by Fiction Factory
no party was complete without this cut
- 8. The Sun Always Shines on TV by A-Ha
- 7. If You Leave by Orchestral Manouvers in the Dark
I'm not a fan of hers but everytime I hear this song, I remember Molly Ringwald in a prom dress in "Pretty in Pink"
- 6. More Than This by Roxy Music
from their critically-acclaimed "last" album - now I hear they're back on the road again (?)
- 5. Running Up The Hill (Deal With God) by Kate Bush
wonderful voice, wonderful video...
- 4. Just Like Heaven by The Cure
upbeat song with quite a tragic story in the lyrics
- 3. Bizarre Love Triangle by New Order
the original version is best, the covers by Frente and Sixpence None the Richer sound way tooooo cute
- 2. Every Day is Like Sunday by Morrissey
a perfect "bad hair day" song to lift up my mood - 'greased tea', anyone? gloomy songs didn't have to sound as such
- 1. Don't Dream It's Over by Crowded House
my favorite song about reality
Other New Wave favorites I'd like to cram into the list: Wishful Thinking (China Crisis), Head Over Heels (Tears for Fears), Dreaming (OMD), Mary's Prayer (Danny Wilson), Build (Housemartins),Forever Young (Alphaville)
- 10. Church Of The Poisoned Mind by Culture Club
Like many of Boy George's songs, actually a gay rights rant if you read the lyrics....none the worse for that however!
- 9. Tainted Love by Soft Cell
needs no introduction....
- 8. In The Air Tonight by Phil Collins
Phil's first non-Genesis track is a show stopper
- 7. I'm Still Standing by Elton John
From 1983's "Too Low For Zero" - Reg's best 80's album since his peak in the early 70's
- 6. Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic by The Police
Sting still ad libs the line "it's a big enough umbrella, but it's always me that ends up getting wet" in his modern songs!!
- 5. True by Spandau Ballet
Timeless - Gary Kemp may never speak to Tony Hadley ever again, but at least we have this classic to remember when they did!
- 4. Tarzan Boy by Baltimora
One of the best one-hit-wonders of the 1980s
- 3. Black Man Ray by China Crisis
Liverpool's forgotten legends that never were....they deserved a lot better than the puny 1 top ten hit they had
- 2. Human by The Human League
The League teamed up with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis (the producers of Janet Jackson and Alexander O'Neal to name but two) in 1986 to produce this beauty
- 1. Long Hot Summer by The Style Council
I must be one of the few people that think that Paul Weller's best period was TSC and not The Jam - anyway this is his most beautiful song, one that he still plays live - pure 80's
- 10. The Final Countdown by Europe
Let's finish this list off appropiatly! Need I say more--The 80's were the BEST!
- 9. Take on Me by Ah-Ha
Great beat and crazy music videos. I actually have this song as the ringer on my phone (LOL).
- 8. You Shook Me All Night Long by ACDC
Three minutes and thirty second of sheer ROCK!!! Great sex song and one of those songs that you have to sing too! Represents them wild girls!!
- 7. All Cried Out by Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam
Beautiful--my sister thinks this is the greatest song of all time. I think this was the one that introduced the subname (featuring Full Force) to the group. Love Lisa Lisa--check out "Head to Toe" and "Lost in Emotion"
- 6. Don't Toss Us Away by Patty Loveless
Had to add my country/western song of the greatest decade! Fans of Loveless will never forget this song!
- 5. Don't Close You Eyes by KIX
Perfect little number that's simple yet EXTREAMLY effective! If you don't quite understand the song, look for the lyrics and you'll descover a whole new meaning to this awesome ballad!
- 4. Through The Fire by Chaka Khan
What a song that needed much more notoriety! My hometown radio station loves to play this one on "All 80's lunch"--by the way, there's a rap song that was popular in the summer of 2003 that had a high singing voice that was singing this song (chipmunk almost)...if anyone knows what the hell i'm talking about, e-mial me please!
- 3. Eyes Without a Face by Billy Idol
One heavy ballad! What exactly are those girls singing is the background????
- 2. Total Eclipse of the Heart by Bonnie Tyler
Maybe a little girly but everytime somebody says "turn around" (anywhere) you think of this song. just makes you want to get up and JUMP (by the way another great song not included on my list)
- 1. Don't Know What You Got (till It's Gone) by Cinderella
Greatest song that has held up the best over time! I still listen to this everyday! best breakup song PERIOD!
For those who haven't already discovered it, "Monster Ballads", is the best CD that I will always keep in my car! ENJOY!
By: Linda Ross
- 10. Don't Shed A Tear by Paul Carrick
Don't shed a tear for me my heart will never end without you.....1988
- 9. Crazy by Icehouse
Well you got to be crazy baby to want a guy like me.........1988
- 8. Hands To Heaven by Breathe
So put your hands to heaven and pray that we'll be back together some day.......1988
- 7. Beds Are Burning by Midnight Oil
How can we dance when are beds are burning..........1988
- 6. I Get Weak by Belinda Carlisle
I get weak when you look at me and pretend we don't speak.........1988
- 5. I'll Always Love You by Taylor Dayne
Your my lucky star.............1988
- 4. Red Red Wine by UB40
Red Red wine in the 80s style yeah...........1988
- 3. Shake Your Love by Debbie Gibson
I just can't shake your love...........1988
- 2. Everyday Is Like Sunday by Morrisey
This is the coastal town that they forget to close down.........1988
- 1. Seasons Change by Expose
I want you i want to feel you close by my side i need you-Seasons change people change...........1988
The millenium decade how ironic........1988
By: Chris Young
- 10. Soul 2 Soul by Keep On Movin
- 9. Queen by Radio Ga Ga
- 8. Kool & The Gang by Cherish
- 7. Lloyd Cole & The Commotions by Perfect skin
- 6. Police by Every Breath You Take
- 5. David Bowie by Lets Dance
- 4. Smokey Robinson by Being With You
- 3. True by Spandau Ballet
- 2. Don Henley by Boys Of Summer
- 1. UB40 by Red Red Wine
- 10. Bizarre Love Triangle by New Order
New order is just inspiring, what can I say ...
- 9. With or Without you by U2
I normally don't like slow songs like this one, but I guess it really stands out
- 8. Purple Rain by Prince
Just a really cool atmosphère created by Prince
- 7. Video Killed The Radiostar by The Buggles
Man I hate Geoff Downes, but it still is a cool song (man I love that Solina String Ensemble)
- 6. Somebody's watching me by Rockwell
Classic Tune, with Michael Jackson on vocals somewhere
- 5. Cruel Summer by Bananarama
Because it was in Karate Kid I, really relaxing
- 4. Justify My Love by Madonna
This is just Madonna
- 3. Beat It by Michael Jackson
- 2. The Beach by New Order
Great Beat, unbeatable vocoderaction
- 1. A Forest by The Cure
Damn this song is it !
- 10. Shake It Up by The Cars
This song is absolutely great!
- 9. I Think We're Alone Now by Tiffany
- 8. We're Not Gonna Take It by Twisted Sister
- 7. Sunday Bloody Sunday/ With or Without You by U2
I love these 2 songs equally! They have to be a tie.
- 6. Material Girl by Madonna
What a classic!
- 5. 867-5309 by Tommy Tutone
I feel bad for the people who have that number.
- 4. Pour Some Sugar On Me by Def Leppard
This song is hot and naughty and should be played at every single dance club!
- 3. Girls Just Wanna Have Fun by Cyndi Lauper
She's so fun to listen to!
- 2. Dancing With Myself by Billy Idol
Billy Idol = soooo hot!
- 1. Take On Me by Ah Ha
Great song, great video.
Also good: Eyes Without a Face, Rebel Yell, White Wedding - Billy Idol, My Best Friend's Girl - The Cars, Almost anything by: U2, the Go-Gos, The Police, Duran Duran, She's Got the Look - Roxette, Don't You Forget About Me - Simple Minds, Everybody Wants to Rule the World - Wang Chung, I Wanna Dance With Somebody - Whitney Houston, My Sharona - The Knack, Simply Irresistable - Robert Palmer, Never Gonna Give You Up, Together Forever - Rick Astley, (I Just) Died In Your Arms Tonight - The Cutting Crew
- 10. Kiss Me by Stephen Tin Tin Duffy
- 9. I Feel For You by Chaka Khan
- 8. Tenderness by General Public
- 7. Ain't Neccesarly So by Bronski Beat
- 6. All Cried Out by Alision Moyet
- 5. Head Over Heels by Tears For Fears
- 4. Im On Fire by Bruce Springsteen
- 3. Whos Holding Donna Now by DeBarge
- 2. Don't Come Around Here No More by Tom Petty
- 1. When Love Breaks by Prefab Sprout
The A-Team and 1985
By: Tara Nine
- 10. All I Need by Jack Wagner
Ok, this one might be a little hokey but my heart melted every time he sang it to his love interest on General Hospital ... *blush*
- 9. Dancing on the Ceiling by Lionel Ritchie
A very hip and perky tune from the normally romantic Lionel ... I loved it and the video was just awesome!
- 8. Never Surrender by Corey Hart
It's sort of a tie between this and "I Can Dream About You" by Dan Hartman. The two songs remind me of one another for whatever reason.
- 7. Oh Sherrie by Steve Perry
Steve had a great voice --solo or fronting for Journey-- and this song made me wish that I was Sherrie!
- 6. Hungry Like The Wolf by Duran Duran
I went through the entire 80's not being able to understand any of the lyrics other than the title --thank goodness for the internet-- but the tune was awfully catchy!
- 5. I Love Rock & Roll by Joan Jett
A woman playing rock guitar ... I was like, wow, I want to be her! I thought Joan Jett was amazingly cool and hip.
- 4. Billie Jean by Michael Jackson
I remember falling in love with this song the first time I heard it on the radio and was shocked to learn it was Michael Jackson ... it was *such* a different new sound for him! And the video, with the Moonwalk, was just awesome!
- 3. Authority Song by John Cougar Mellencamp
"...growing up leads to growing old and then to dying and dying to me don't sound like all that much fun" ... a true anthem for the rebel in all of us!
- 2. Summer of '69 by Bryan Adams
I love every one of Bryan's song and he's my all-time favorite artist but Summer of '69 is definitely his catchiest tune. I *still* turn this one up!
- 1. Smokin' In The Boys Room by Motley Crue
Nikki Sixx is *still* to die for! I've had a crush on him for 20 years!! The Crue has some much better songs than this but this one was a highly commercial success and even my Elvis-loving Mom liked it!
There were so many great songs in the 80's that it is nearly impossible to pick only 10 favorites ... I want to name them ALL!
By: Sebastián Pérez
- 10. Together Forever by Rick Astley
This Song made posible for me the begining and Start of the 80´s
- 9. Toy Soldier by Martika
I can still remember the day. It was just perfect......this song was just in the middle of everything!!!
- 8. In my Dreams by Reo Speed Wagon
Id say that these song is THE SONG that i have heard the most. In my whole life.
- 7. Only in my Dreams by Debbie Gibson
My favorite.....I mean....Did anybody didnt fall in love with this simple and plain little girl.....She was so Simple.....that made her PERFECT!!
- 6. David Bowie by Lets Dance
Does somebody.....anyone......even in the furthest jungle not seen this Videoclip?
- 5. Girls just wanna have fun by Cindy Lauper
it gives one of the most important principles of the 80´s. Just pure fun.....without any need of an explanation.
- 4. Don´t worry be happy by Bobby Mcferrin
If 80´s where synonymous of happiness.....which could be a better example.
- 3. Faith by George Michael
- 2. Africa by Toto
i would say....that at least these song has been listened twice in parts that any human being has been before.....Like Boston....je
- 1. Material Girl by Madonna
It Just defines the 80`s.
........there are a few more.....Ive been loosing you(A-ha),The tide is high(Blondie),Rock the Cashbah(The Clash), Love bites (Def-Leppard),Lights(Journey),Summer Time(Mongo Jerry),La Bamba(Ritchie Valens), You Got it (Roy Orbison......anyway.....its all gone...jeje....or perhaps...jeje
By: Matt Hass
- 10. World's Away by Strange Advance
One of the best songs in the best decade.
- 9. Cherish by Kool & The Gang
Makes you cherish the little things.
- 8. Raspberry Beret by Prince
Wonderful song, easy to rememeber, so easy to sing.
- 7. Hip To Be Square by Huey Lewis & The News
- 6. Automatic by Pointer Sisters
Great beat, and great sound, even though it doesn't sound like the sisters.
- 5. Everywhere by Fleetwood Mac
Love singing this song in the car.
- 4. Better Be Good To Me by Tina Turner
An amazing women.
- 3. Heaven by Psychedelic Furs
Makes you remember the great memories of your past.
- 2. Where The Streets Have No Name by U2
One of their many best.
- 1. Do They Know It's Christmas by Band-Aid
The first of all the famine relief groups. The first and the best.
Other great atrist include Bruce Springsteen, INXS, David Bowie, Bryan Adams and Ray Parker Jr. to name a few.
Previous List or Next List
We also have pages on this topic devoted to the 70s and 90s
Do You Have a List to Share?
Please check out the Top Ten Music Songs submission page.