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
I was born in 1989 and I like 80's music way better than music today
By: Neil H
- 10. Jump by Van Halen
- 9. Wild One by Thin Lizzy
They are one of the most under rated bands ever, but people openly owe alot to the music of these guys. R.I.P Phil Linott
- 8. I Will Follow by U2
The first song they ever wrote yet still one of their best
- 7. Still Of The Night by Whitesnake
- 6. In The Air Tonight by Phil Collins
The most widely known drummer
- 5. How Soon Is Now by The Smiths
- 4. Gloria by U2
Best heard on the under a blood red sky live album. its simple but genius
- 3. Down Under by Men At Work
- 2. We Are The Champions by Queen
Awsome band heaps of great songs but this sticks out
- 1. Sunday Bloody Sunday by U2
Should only be heard live
- 10. Golden Brown by Stranglers
- 9. This Charming Man by The Smiths
- 8. Rain by The Cult
- 7. Never Let Me Down Again by Depeche Mode
- 6. Calling You by Snake Corps
- 5. A Day by Clan of Xymox
- 4. I'm In Love With a German Filmstar by Passions
- 3. Once In a Lifetime by Talking Heads
- 2. Love Like Blood by Killing Joke
- 1. Kampfbereit by Front 242
A very personal and subjective list :-) I strongly recommend these ten songs to anyone who may wish to have a more melancholic (but for "Once In a Lifetime") musical view of the eighties.
- 10. Bad by Michael Jackson
Wacko Jacko puts out a great follow-up to the behemoth that was Thriller. I believe there was like 7 number-one hits on this album...and they are all great songs. His last gem before he got messed up in the head, painted himself white, and slept with little children
- 9. Born in the U.S.A. by Bruce Springsteen
One of America's most gifted singer-songwriter's, Bruce puts out his best material ever. Though it may not seem as serious as some of his other work, it made him a superstar, and allowed him to connect with nearly every American at the time. Every song is good, every song has a catchy hook, and every song has real messages.
- 8. Dr. Feelgood by Mötley Crüe
Mötley Crüe's greatest. It spawned like 5 or 6 hits. "Kickstart My Heart", "Dr. Feelgood", "Don't Go Away Mad (Just Go Away), "Without You", "Same Ol' Situation"....Mötley doesn't get better than this. It's like the culmination of all their previous successes. They were truly on top with this album...too bad it all came crashing down in the 90s.
- 7. Hysteria by Def Leppard
Def Leppard at its finest. Remarkable songwriting and highly catchy hooks. Where else can you find a sexual song like "Pour Some Sugar On Me" or "Rocket" with a ballad like "Hysteria" and a social concern like "Gods of War". And to think that drummer Rick Allen only has one arm on this album.
- 6. Slippery When Wet by Bon Jovi
The album that broke one of the biggest 80s rock bands. Great pop tunes like "You Give Love a Bad Name" and "Livin' on a Prayer". Also, sappy love ballads like "Never Say Goodbye". Straightforward rock on "Let it Rock" and "Social Disease". And the greatest acousic song, the greatest on-the-road song, "Wanted Dead or Alive".
- 5. Thriller by Michael Jackson
What can I say, it's Thriller. Excellent pop-rock, start to finish.
- 4. 5150 by Van Halen
Sammy Hagar, the better singer and better person, is on board for this album after the band fired loser David Lee Roth. "Why Can't This Be Love" is very catchy and Van Halen contributes some of their best ballads ("Dreams" and "Love Walks In") as well as some of the greatest straightforward rock ("Get Up" and "Best of Both Worlds"). Eddie's guitar work is amazing throughout. Unlike 1984, you can actually listen to this album start to finish, no worries.
- 3. New Jersey by Bon Jovi
The better Bon Jovi album. Released after Slippery When Wet, this album is fun and serious at the same time. It pays tribute to the band's home state and touches you on all levels. Whether you want an acoustic jam, a sing-along chorus, a fun-in-the-sun song, a song about brotherhood, or a serious love ballad...this album's got it. The musicianship and listenability of this album is stellar.
- 2. Pump by Aerosmith
Arguably the best album of America's greatest rock band. It is chock full of hard rock with everything you could ever want out of an album. Straight forward rock, balladry, social commentary, sex-sex-sex, tribal chants, elevators, saxophones, and killer scream solos and killer guitar solos.
- 1. Appetite for Destruction by Guns N' Roses
Brought raw, gritty hard rock back to the top. It sold like a million a week in 1988. GN'R had the potential to be the next Rolling Stones, Aerosmith, and Beatles combined.
These are all great albums in my opinion, and some of the rankings might be a little off. But I'm a rocker, and thus the rock gems of the 80s top my list.
By: Caleb M. Herndon
- 10. Rock The Casbah by The Clash
Probably my favorite song by The Clash.
- 9. Jump by Van Halen
Synthesizers and hard rock: an excellent combination.
- 8. Love Shack by The B-52's
There's just something about the vocals of Fred Schneider along with a catchy tune that definitely belongs in the top 10.
- 7. Love Song by Tesla
An excellent song by one of the more successful bands of the era.
- 6. Sweet Child O' Mine by Guns 'n' Roses
Killer guitar riff and great lyrics.
- 5. Whip It by Devo
80's music at it's finest?
- 4. Cars by Gary Numan
That classic 80's sound.
- 3. Take On Me by A-Ha
Just go ahead and admit that you love this song...
- 2. Touch of Grey by The Grateful Dead
This is a wondeful song, and is totally different from any other song in the 80's.
- 1. Pour Some Sugar on Me by Def Leppard
It rocks. Enough said.
The 80's brought us countless one hit wonders and excellent songs. For me, it was hard to narrow it all down to 10 since there were so many songs that could've been on here.
By: Anya Raine
- 10. Billie Jean by Michael Jackson
Like the song good to dance to and sing.
- 9. Blondie by Automic
Like the song, did not know at first but now sing it all the time aswell.
- 8. Facination (Keep feelin) by The human leauge
Like the song because it is catchy and cool to sing to.
- 7. Poison Arrow by ABC
Got to know the song more and then eventually sang to it all the time.
- 6. Thriller by Michael Jackson
Like it, good to dance to, don't like the music video. (it's to scary!)
- 5. Remember You're A Womble by The wombles
Like the wombles they are soft and cuddly. They are most famous for there tv programme they used to do.
- 4. Take On Me by A-Ha
I like the song because i know the words, like dancing to it and me and my brother sing to it to get good scores.
- 3. The Way You Make Me Feel by Michael Jackson
I know the song and love singing to it but i am not a big fan of Michael. (sorry)
- 2. You Give Love A Bad Name by Bon Jovi
Nice rock music, good to dance and sing along to.
- 1. Material Girl by Madonna
Good song like the rhythm. Like the video for it like seeing what she looks like and the clothes they were, the fashion in the 80s.
I like all these songs because they are like totally awesome!!!!!!
By: Charlie Raine
All the best songs in the world!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
By: ULises Serrano
- 10. No Huyas De Mi by Kenny Y Los Electricos
- 9. Noches De Tu Piel by La Castañeda
- 8. Hey you by Pink Floyd
- 7. El Angel De La Lujuria by Luzbel
- 6. Sangre by Angeles del Infierno
- 5. Los Dinosaurios by Charly Garcia
- 4. Tira Para Arriba by Miguel Mateos
- 3. El Extraño Del Pelo Largo by Enanitos verdes
- 2. La Celula Que Explota by Caifanes
- 1. Persiana Americana by Soda Stereo
Alguien sabe quien cantaba la cancion de Falco "Jeanny" en españo??
- 10. Sunday Bloody Sunday by U2
Gotta give props to U2...they are survivors.. was a legend in the 80s, and still are 20 odd years later.
- 9. I Melt With You by MODERN ENGLISH
An old favourite, I didn't hear it for a long time until I came across an old 80s movie 'Valley girls'...that was a trip!
- 8. In Between Days by The Cure
You either luv or hate The Cure..this one i definitely count as a classic.
- 7. Ghost In You by Psychedelic Furs
Cool slow new wave jamm
- 6. Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now by The Smiths
You HAVE to turn it real loud, from the first few bars, you know this is a trip..
- 5. German girl by Lotus Eaters
Equally nostalgic as 'First picture of you' by the same band..
- 4. More To Lose by Seona Dancing
I'm with Gad..this song rocks!
- 3. Human by Human League
I can almost hear that intro..
- 2. If You Leave by OMD
Ahh yes...the good old days!
- 1. Whatever Possessed You by The Care
Takes me back...way back to the New Wave days.. major flashbackkkk<<<<<<
For the new wave fans out there, we are the lucky ones who had made this music a part of our journey through adolescence..it has never been the same..but the songs allow us to re-visit.
- 10. Lawyers In Love by Jackson Browne
- 9. Lights Out by Peter Wolf
Yet another solo project of the singer from a band, my blood runs cold...Can't remember, my memory has just been sold.
- 8. Physical by Adam Ant and the Ants
NIN did a good rendition of this classic
- 7. Fantasy by Aldo Nova
Classic 80's rock song. Great riff...
- 6. Separate Ways (Worlds Apart) by Journey
Great song from a great band.
- 5. Lunatic Fringe by Red Ryder
The singer of this band had a hit song in the 90's. Plus this song went to one of the best movies of the 80's, Vision Quest. Life is a highway.
- 4. Greg Kihn Band by The Break Up Song
They just don't write 'em like that anymore...
- 3. New Moon on Monday by Duran Duran
Yet another favorite of mine... and another great video.
- 2. Union of the Snake by Duran Duran
My favorite song by these guys...and a great video I might add.
- 1. Election Day by Arcadia
This is one of the best songs from the '80's. It is off the lone album from a band consisting of the remaining members of probably the best band of the decade.
I have lots of others .. will have to do another.. there is too many others missed to mention...
- 10. Rock You Like A Hurricane by The Scorpions
Even commercials use this song cause it's so great
- 9. You're The Best by Joe Esposito
Straight from the greatest 80's movie ever - Karate Kid I
- 8. Edge Of Seventeen by Stevie Nicks
Her voice is so great
- 7. Morning Train by Sheena Easton
Just makes me laugh
- 6. Holding Out For A Hero by Bonnie Tyler
OOOHH so awesome!
- 5. Harden My Heart by Quarterflash
A great break up song for a girl
- 4. Talk Dirty To Me by Poison
I can't help but turn this song all the way up in the car
- 3. Break My Stride by Matthew Wilder
Again, another song that never should have been remade
- 2. Toy Soldiers by Martika
Eminem shouldn't have touched this!!
- 1. Rock Me Amadeus!!!! by Falco!
Greatest song ever!
Man, this was hard fitting them all onto a list of ten, some other good ones are: When It's Love-Van Halen, Here I Go Again-Whitesnake, Valerie-Steve Winwood, Heart And Soul-T'Pau, Puttin' On The Ritz-Taco, Mexican Radio-Wall Of Voodoo, Moving In Stereo-The Cars, This Must Be The Place-Talking Heads....As you can tell I am an 80's music freak!
By: Dave Roberts
- 10. The Unforgettable Fire by U2
- 9. Ride The lightning by Metallica
Bang your head
- 8. Life's Rich Pageant by REM
Begi the begin
- 7. Somewhere In Time by Iron Maiden
- 6. Back In Black by AC/DC
- 5. Doolittle by The Pixies
Here comes you man...
- 4. London Calling by The Clash
Should I stay?
- 3. Ghost in the Machine by The Police
Songs like Demolition Man and Invisible Sun make this an 80's must have.
- 2. Extraterrestrial Live by Blue Oyster Cult
The Album art kicks ass, so does the music!
- 1. Abacab by Genesis
Early 80's; I guess this was considered lame in some circles, but I played it over and over again. It fed my warped imagination...
Not a perfect list, but some good stuff anyway.
- 10. Taking It All Too Hard by Genesis
Solid decade by Phil and the boys. One of their best.
- 9. Subdivisions by Rush
High School sucked for about 85% of the US population. This song epitomizes the pigeon hole mentality thrust upon America's youth.
- 8. Heart Of Rock & Roll by Huey Lewis and the News
Sports. One hell of an album.
- 7. Everybody Wants To Rule The World by Tears For Fears
They looked gay as hell, but Hey, who didn't. The song stuck in my brain for years.
- 6. No Way Out by Jefferson Starship
or was it just Starship, or was it Jefferson Airplane? (Editor: Jefferson Airplane in the 60s - Jefferson Starship in the 70s - Starship in the 80s - Jefferson Starship today)
- 5. I Can Dream About You by Dan Hartman
One hit wonder. The video was cool with the moon walk thing...Moving sidewalks, I can't see under my feet.
- 4. Waiting For A Girl Like You by Foreigner
Senior Prom. Anybody remember it?
- 3. Modern Day Delilah by Van Stephenson
A lost oldie - 1984. 20+ years makes it an oldie.
- 2. Borderline by Madonna
I know, I know, yeah, yeah...Madonna. Her first hit wasn't so bad or so cliche.
- 1. Magic by The Cars
Probably the biggest band of the Eighties to burn out in their prime.
Night Ranger, Def Leppard, The Cars, The Police, Genesis and Huey did a great job in holding off the counterculture of new wave until grunge got here. Good job everyone.
- 10. Just like Heaven by The Cure
One of their best, IMO...
- 9. Puttin' on the Ritz by Taco
Another campy tune, but very 80's...
- 8. Hazy Shade of Winter by The Bangles
Definitely their "Rockin'ist" tune...
- 7. One night in Bangkok by Murray Head
Campy, but still a great 80's song...
- 6. Things Can Only Get Better by Howard Jones
Another prime example of eighties music...
- 5. Saved by Zero by The Fixx
Good example of the sound of the eighties...
- 4. Der Kommisar by After the Fire
Better version of Falco's song...
- 3. One Vision by Queen
- 2. Under the Milky Way by The Church
- 1. Twilight Zone by Golden Earring
Better than Radar Love...
I was born in '69, so my most formative years were pretty much the entire decade of the 80's. I remember clearly when "Grunge" and "Political Correctness" killed music.
- 10. Let's Go Crazy by Prince
The faux-church-sermon thingie at the beginning is wonderful. The whole song is just a great time.
- 9. Faith by George Michael
This video is HOTT.
- 8. Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go by Wham!
I adore George Michael. This song, again, never fails to bring a smile to my face.
- 7. Karma Chameleon by Culture Club
The lyrics don't really make sense, but it's so much fun!
- 6. Boys Don't Cry by The Cure
Excellent song. That's all.
- 5. Don't You Want Me? by Human League
I always hear this in the 80s room at the club I go to. I can't help grinning and dancing like a fool.
- 4. Obsession by Animotion
Such a badass song. The embodiment of 80s, to me.
- 3. In A Big Country by Big Country
CLASSIC. I adore this. Scottish one hit wonders, as far as I know..but oh, how awesome they were. "I'm not expecting to grow flowers in a desert.."
- 2. The Promise by When In Rome
I'm sad that a lot of my peers only know this song because of Napoleon Dynamite. It's amazing.
- 1. With or Without You by U2
Everyone has put this one..but it's SO GOOD. My favourite band ever.
Gosh..I have a lot more. You should probably email me..email@example.com. We can discuss the 80s!
- 10. Back In Black by AC/DC
- 9. When Doves Cry by Prince
- 8. In The Air Tonight by Phill Collins
- 7. Crazy For You by Madonna
- 6. Thriller by Michael Jackson
- 5. Boys Of Summer by Don Henley
- 4. Living On A Prayer by Bon Jovi
- 3. Tainted Love by Soft Cell
- 2. I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For by U2
- 1. Don't You Forget About Me by Simple Minds
- 10. Obsession by Animotion
The epitome of 80's
- 9. Burning down the house by Talking Heads
- 8. Don't You Forget About Me by Simple Minds
- 7. Land Down Under by Men At Work
- 6. Poison Arrow by ABC
- 5. Blue Monday by New order
- 4. World where you live by Crowded House
A simple lovley tune that u can never get sick of, like all of their songs...
- 3. The One Thing by INXS
From their best album ever, Shabooh Shoobah (1982)
- 2. Cat People by David Bowie
- 1. Gloria by U2
Their best song ever!!!!
By: Ben (Please withhold last name)
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.