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

By: Sue Deschene
By: Donald Carter
  • 10. Maneater by Hall & Oates
    oh here she comes---priceless
  • 9. These Dreams by Heart
    i just thought the blonde (Nancy) was hot
  • 8. Pyromania by Def Leppard
    i love the ending when you hear that eery laugh
  • 7. Take On Me by A-Ha
    the song and the video are memorable
  • 6. Every Breath You Take by Police
    cool love song
  • 5. White Wedding by Billy Idol
    this song just rocks
  • 4. Kyrie by Mister Mister
    i love the chorus on this song
  • 3. I Can't Go For That (No Can Do) by Hall & Oates
    this song crossed over so many charts
  • 2. Hysteria by Def Leppard
    this song has a great hook
  • 1. Kiss On My List by Hall & Oates
    what an awesome song!!!!
By: Little Jimmy
By: Alex de Large
  • 10. 2000 Miles by Pretenders
    not just a christmas song.
  • 9. Love is a Stranger / Sweet Dreams by Eurythmics
    of course.
  • 8. I Won't Let You Down by PhD
    only years later do you realize that it was actually quite brilliant.
  • 7. Atmospherics: Listen to the Radio by Tom Robinson
    great mysterious lyrics, too. co-written by Peter Gabriel.
  • 6. Avalon by Roxy Music
  • 5. We Belong by Pat Benatar
    well, hey, I just like it.
  • 4. O Superman (for Massenet) by Laurie Anderson
    very strange, very good.
  • 3. the Man Mountain by Bow Wow Wow
    didn't know I liked this song THIS much until I compiled this list.
  • 2. Marlene on the Wall by Suzanne Vega
    timeless brilliant wonderful!
  • 1. Golden Brown by Stranglers
    the the best best song ever
nothing after '85... I feel I should have put in Siouxsie & the Banshees somewhere, but I couldn't decide on a particular song
By: Koreen
  • 10. Head Over Heels by Tears For Fears
  • 9. Need You Tonight by INXS
  • 8. Time by Culture Club
  • 7. Centerfold by J Giles band
  • 6. Love is A Battlefield by Pat Benatar
  • 5. I Want To Know What Love Is by Foreigner
  • 4. Out Of Touch by Hall & Oates
    They had to have 2 listed...they were the 80's
  • 3. Come on Eileen by Dexies Midnight Runners
    Best one hit wonder
  • 2. This Is It by Kenny Loggins
  • 1. Maneater by Hall & Oates
By: barbara mendez
  • 10. Billie Jean by Michael Jackson
  • 9. That's What Friends..are For by Stevie Wonder,dionne Warwick et al
    Stevie Wonder..need say more ?
  • 8. Don't Stop Believing by Journey
  • 7. Could You Be Loved by Bob Marley & The Wailers
    terrific "upbeat" song of reggae bythe king
  • 6. Mercy Mercy Me by Marvin Gaye
    anything of marvin gaye's should be in the top songs
  • 5. One On One by Hall & Oates
    the vocals, the music- great blends and harmony
  • 4. Thriller by Michael Jackson
  • 3. Open Arms by Journey
    quintessential journey
  • 2. Hold The Line by Toto
  • 1. Mano A Mano by Hall & Oates
    just a great song
By: Keith Duperreault
  • 10. Everywhere by Fleetwood Mac
    An undeniable classic. Very unique for that decade...and musically still holds up by today's standards.
  • 9. Wait by White Lion
    I wasn't big on 'heavy metal' in the 80's (which is more like the pop music of today..heh heh) but certain bands impressed me: White Lion, Winger, Poison being a few of them.
  • 8. Strangelove by Depeche Mode
    Depeche is my favorite all-time band....but it was big for me in the very late 80's and I felt thus didn't capture the decade as much for me as the others above. Make no mistake about it though - Depeche Mode are masters at what they do and will always have a place in my top ten lists ;)Wait
  • 7. Higher Love by Steve Winwood
    I wore my old .45 of this song on my old record player in the basement of my parents house.
  • 6. There's the Girl by Heart
    Heart had to make it on my list, and this song was big for me in highschool.
  • 5. I Can't Fight This Feeling by Foreigner
    What 80's list could be complete without the ultimate ballad of that decade....
  • 4. Major Tom (I'm Coming Home) by Peter Schilling
    This has to be one of the more haunting songs from the 80's. It has the emotion that A-ha captured with "Take On Me", but this one did it first.
  • 3. Back Where You Belong by .38 Special
    This band could put out nothing but pure magic in the 80's. Thier greatest hits CD is one of the jewels of my collection.
  • 2. Wild Horses by Gino Vanelli
    An almost forgotten artist from the 80's, again not one of my favorites but the few hits he had struck a chord in me and bring back all the good times whenever I hear them.
  • 1. Boys of Summer by Don Henley
    There are alot of other bands I like more...but this song takes me back to every good memory I had of my teen years in the 80's.
In looking at my list I have noticed something: most of the bands I have chosen had decent careers throughout the 70's before the songs they released in the 80's. I must say that I am a HUGE synthpop fan, and it comes as a surprise that when I sit and think about it that all my 'great songs' I remember from that decade would not be of that genre. Perhaps these bands had enough experience heading into the 80's to turn out high quality product while other new artists (while catchy) were still trying to find their voice. Either way, lists like these are hard for me because I love so many different types of music and have too much to choose from...but I think this list pretty much nails down my teen years musically :)
By: Andy
  • 10. Don't You Want Me. by Human League
  • 9. Never Gonna Give You UP by Rick Astley
    Whatever happened to this guy?
  • 8. Careless Whisper by George Michael
    Classic slow dance record,only spoiled by the line "Guilty feet have got no rhythm" who puts that in a smoochy song.
  • 7. Take On Me by A-Ha
    Brill debut single,should of got to number one.
  • 6. Save a Prayer by Duran Duran
  • 5. Summer Of 69 by Bryan Adams
    Great rock record,only reached number 42 in the charts though.
  • 4. Stand & Deliver by Adam & the Ants
  • 3. Edge Of Heaven by Wham!
    Love `em` or loathe them, huge in the 80,s.
  • 2. Souvenir by O.M.D.
    Haunting sounds from a great group.
  • 1. Vienna by Ultravox
    An absolute classic record,never get tired of hearing it.
By: Katie
  • 10. UB40 by I Can't Help Falling in Love With You
  • 9. Cum On Feel The Noise by Quiet Riot
  • 8. Mysterious Ways by U2
  • 7. Always by BonJovi
  • 6. Total Eclipse of the Heart by Bonnie Tyler
  • 5. Shot to the Heart by BonJovi
    Bonjovi.. rules.
  • 4. With or Without You by U2
  • 3. Billy Jean by Michael Jackson
    Its fab, just fab.
  • 2. Like a Prayer by Madonna
    Cuz when you call my name its like a little prayer Im down on my knees, I wanna take you there... Need I say more?
  • 1. Obsession by Animotion
    Gwarsh, its great.
I love the '80s.
By: Alicia Sanders
  • 10. Walk This Way by Run DMC and Aerosmith
    Good combination of rap and rock.
  • 9. Love TKO by Teddy Pendergrass
    The 80's was Teddy's hey day could put on a great performance before his accident.
  • 8. Maneater by Hall & Oates
    Upbeat tune.
  • 7. Rise by Herb Alpert
    This song is great to listen to live and the band is very tight.
  • 6. Everything Your Heart Desires by Hall & Oates
  • 5. One Heartbeat by Smokey Robinson
    Anything by Smokey is FABULOUS!
  • 4. I Can't Go For That (no can do) by Hall & Oates
    Another all time favorite.
  • 3. Pop Life by Prince
    Glad he's not singing in his usual falsetto voice
  • 2. Close The Door by Teddy Pendergrass
    This is a beautiful love song.
  • 1. One On One by Hall & Oates
    This is my all time favorite song and it still sounds just as beautiful today as it did back in the 80's.
By: Matthew Simon Donovan
  • 10. Walking On Sunshine by Katrina and the Waves
  • 9. Is There Something I Should Know by Duran Duran
  • 8. The Look of Love by ABC
  • 7. Walk Like An Egyptian by The Bangles
    Just How does an Egyptian walk?
  • 6. Eternal Flame by The Bangles
    The original, best version
  • 5. Searching High and Low by A-Ha
    Another great track from the Norwegian stars
  • 4. Stand and Deliver by Adam Ant
  • 3. Prince Charming by Adam Ant
  • 2. The Land of Make Believe by Bucks Fizz
  • 1. Take On Me by A-Ha
    The video is amazing
By: jen
  • 10. You Belong To The City by Glen Frey
  • 9. Love Is On The Way by Saigon Kick
  • 8. Careless Whisper by George Michael
  • 7. At This Moment by Billy Vera And The Beaters
  • 6. If I Close My Eyes Forever by Lita Ford And Ozzy Osbourne
  • 5. Can't Fight This Feeling by REO Speedwagon
  • 4. Groovy Kind Of Love by Phil Collins
  • 3. Making Love Out Of Nothing At All by Air Supply
    beautiful music and words
  • 2. The Search Is Over by Survivor
    it's a song with a great meaning
  • 1. I Love You by Climax Blues Band
    this is not only my favorite song of the 80's it's my favorite of all time
By: Xavier Theoret
  • 10. Our House by Madness
    Rediscoverd it recently!
  • 9. Money For Nothing by Dire Straits
    Cool song. Did you know that the "Reboot cartoon" folks made the music video? (
  • 8. I've Been Thinking About You by London Beat
    Don't ask me why! :-)
  • 7. Livin' In Desperate Times by Olivia Newton-John
    I adore the beat on this one!
  • 6. Owner Of A Lonely Heart by YES
    This is for the electric guitar!
  • 5. Don't Forget Me (when Your Gone) by Glass tiger
    A cool bright, uplifting song.
  • 4. I'm Your Venus by Romy and Michelle
    Great beat... A unique style too. Weird thing, I didn't like it at first. ;-)
  • 3. You Might Think by The Cars
    I wonder what you might think...? ;-)
  • 2. One Night In Bankok by Chess
    Great "exotic" introduction and then a great song.
  • 1. She Bop by Cyndi Lauper
    Again for the beat...
Some say that we remember best the song we hear at 7-9 years old, when we first begin to better understand the world around us. ... It could be true for me! And while you are on the web come see my clouds, sun & moon in fast movies at (not a commercial site)
By: Dan
  • 10. Centerfold by J. Geils Band
    Just a great song.
  • 9. Power Of Love by Huey Lewis & The News
    What top 10 of the '80s list would be complete without at least one tune from the Back To The Future soundtrack?
  • 8. Breakout by Swing Out Sister
    Another almost obscenely happy song.
  • 7. What I Like About You by The Romantics
    See comment to song #5.
  • 6. Talk It Over by Greyson Hugh
    Gotta give some respect to our local boy :o)
  • 5. Tuff Enuff by The Fabulous Thunderbirds
    A great song to cruise to.
  • 4. Amanda by Boston
    Even though they were only a duo of Scholtz/Delp at this point, they lost none of their distinctive sound.
  • 3. The Warrior by Scandal
    One of the first songs I taught myself how to play on guitar.
  • 2. Walking On Sunshine by Katrina and the Waves
    Come on, you can't come out of hearing this song without a smile.
  • 1. Electric Blue by Icehouse
    To me, this song says "'80s" more than any other I can think of, due to its perfect mix of synthesizers and guitars.
I don't remember all of the '80s, as I was barely older than 1 yr when they began- but they yielded some of the best music ever recorded.
By: salman azam
By: moe O'connell
  • 10. Money Changes Everything by Cyndi Lauper
    The best the USA could ever offer to the music world,Ms Cyndi Lauper,the best rock chick to hit the charts.Cyn never failed to produce a bad reccord and live performances always powerfull,shes great.New material will be out this year,so watch out for that.
  • 9. Hand Held In Black And White by Dollar
    Sugar pop was never as good as in 1982 and this fab dou knew how to release some of the best songs in the few years they were together then,after a brief comeback in '87,they went their seperate ways,we want them back!!!We need more great music like this.If you havent heard this one,then if u are an 80's fan you cant miss this track from your collection.
  • 8. Dreaming by Blondie
    well when it comes to the 80's you cant have a poll without mentioning Deborah Harry and the guys in Blondie.One of the most influencial bands of the deccade,Debs and co will always be remembered ,this was their best track without doubt,and more releases to come I believe,great.
  • 7. You're All I Need by Carmel
    what a great band these guys were,and when they played live it was amazing.From the "Good news" lp,this is the best track on the album,but flopped in the singles chart unfortunately.Ms Mc Court still gigs now a days,if u can go and hear her vocals,just fantastic.
  • 6. Don't You Want Me by Jody watley
    One time member of Shalamar,Jody Watley must be one of the most underated acts of the mid 80's.Always produceing great dance and soulfull sounds,did well in the USA,but as usuall the British buying public didnt know good tunes when they were released,such a shame.
  • 5. Dress You Up by Madonna
    One of the few songs that didnt make no.1 for Maddy in the 80's and her best reccord to date,should appear on a forthcomming "Best of "I should think.
  • 4. Listen To Your Heart by Sonia
    the cjheeky little sweet girl from Liverpool and one of her dance tunes,nice easy pop by the creators of the PWL lable.still to be heard at the best school discos in town.
  • 3. Nice To Be In Love Again by The Swabriggs Plus Two
    this was the Irish entry for the dreaded Eurovision song contest in 1977.Should have won I think,its very hard to get now a days,I still put it on now and again,who said Vinyl was dead!!.
  • 2. I Want Candy by Bow Wow Wow
    another good band,eventhough they were conterversial for the time with Annabelle posing nude at the age of 16 for the sleeve of their first album,this cover version of a 60 hit showes her vocal skills,really good reccord.
  • 1. Thunder In The Mountains by Toyah Willcox
    Toyah was fab,the origional lady of punk,she knew how to yell out a few numbers,for those of u who havent heard this its worth a few minutes of your time.
hope you like my selections,they are so many other great 80's groups and solo performances.....I just didnt have the time!!!
By: TheShoegazer
  • 10. More To Lose by Seona Dancing
  • 9. Therese by The Bodines
    Another great indiepop song!
  • 8. Strawberry Wine by My Bloody Valentine
    Great jangly pop song!
  • 7. Vapour Trail by Ride
    Great melodic song!
  • 6. First Picture Of You by Lotus Eaters
    Amazing 80's song.
  • 5. Catch the breeze by Slowdive
    So this is what shoegazing sounds like!
  • 4. fool's gold by The Stone Roses
    Madchester is cool!
  • 3. Distance Between Us by Fra Lippo Lippi
    So this is what new romantic sounds like!
  • 2. Whirlpool Heart by Wild Swans
    Classic pop song that I can play over and over without getting sick of it.
  • 1. Darklands by The Jesus and Mary Chain
    Very first song that influenced me musically! for more info on great music!
By: ken
  • 10. Whitney Houston by I Wanna Dance With Somebody
    was cool
  • 9. Stay by Shakespeare's Sister
    dunno if it was the 80's but its cool
  • 8. Lost In Your Eyes by Debbie Gibson
    shut up, i like it
  • 7. Cry Little Sister by Jimmy Barnes
    off the lost boys soundtrack
  • 6. Time After Time by Cindy Lauper
  • 5. I'll Be There For You by Bon Jovi
    makes the chicks wet
  • 4. Thriller by Micheal Jackson
    sweet video
  • 3. All I Want Is You by U2
    cool tune
  • 2. Patience by Guns N Roses
    wicked as hell
  • 1. Wanted Dead Or Alive by Bon Jovi
    da bomb
By: Lorne
  • 10. State of the Nation by Industry
    A one hit wonder (I think)..
  • 9. Wouldn't It Be Good by Nik Kershaw
    ...Probable has something to do with losing my virginity...
  • 8. Purple Rain by Prince
    A Musical Genius.
  • 7. (Don't You) Forget about me by Simple Minds
    From the movie "The Breakfast Club". Every character in the movie was every teenager in the 80s. Billy Idol's remake isn't bad.
  • 6. Blue Jean by David Bowie
    Bowie is phenomenal.
  • 5. Pale Shelter by Tears For Fears
    From "The Hurting"... the entire album reflexes all the music the early 80's
  • 4. Rock The Casbar by The Clash
    Neat mix of punk and new wave
  • 3. I Ran by Flock Of Seaguls
    Remember The Hair...
  • 2. Union Of The Snake by Duran Duran
    No Eighties List would be complete without "DD".
  • 1. White Wedding by Billy Idol
    The "KING" of the eighties.
The eighties generated a lot of good and bad. From Don Johnson Suits to Billy Idol Hair; Generations agree that the music of the eighties is incredible.
By: rebecca gilman
  • 10. Like A Prayer by Madonna
    uplifting and powerfull
  • 9. Somebody by Depeche Mode
    just love it
  • 8. Later Tonight by Pet Shop Boys
    beautiful but sad song
  • 7. Aint Nobody by Chaka Khan
    makes me feel happy
  • 6. Say A Little Prayer by Bomb The Bass
  • 5. Nothing Compares To You by Sinaed O`connor
    A moving sentimental song with A lovely video
  • 4. Mr.disco by New Order
  • 3. Somebody Elses Guy by Jocelyn Brown
    amazing voice
  • 2. Unfinished Symphony by Massive Attack
    sends shivers down my spine
  • 1. The Look Of Love by Abc
    powerful song and lyrics immediatly makes my mood happier when I hear it
people laugh when I say I love the 80`S but I really dont care.......oh I forgot to say dancing that 80`S ?

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.