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: Marie Costelloe
- 10. Shout by Tears For Fears
Love the beginning of this song.
- 9. West End Girls by Pet Shop Boys
- 8. by
- 7. Like To Get To Know You Well by Howard Jones
Definitely his best as far as I am concerned.
- 6. True by Spandau Ballet
The best of theirs, but oh so many to choose from.
- 5. Wake Me Up Before You Go Go by Wham!
Loved this band and not ashamed to say it.
- 4. Wouldn't it be good by Nik Kershaw
Great, such a great voice, and what a cool haircut he used to have, but please don't ever bring back the mullet.
- 3. Wild Boys by Duran Duran
Excellent song, excellent video, excellent band.
- 2. Careless Whisper by Wham!/George Michael
My favourite performer, gotta love him.
- 1. Forever Young by Alphaville
Excellent, excellent, always loved this and hope to see them in concert.
There are so many other songs out there that I could put in the top 10, but just too many to choose from. The music was wonderful, but God, I hope the clothes never come back into fashion!
By: jonny roberts
- 10. Running In The Family by Level 42
Serious incestual undertones.
- 9. I Feel Like Dancing by The Nolans
I love Bernie.
- 8. Safety Dance by Men Without Hats
You'll never stop me dancing.
- 7. You Spin Me Round by Dead Or Alive
- 6. The Neverending Story by Limahl
I used to have a mullet like his in the 80's.
- 5. O'l Amour by Dollar
I love Money.
- 4. by
- 3. I Jusy Died In Your Arms Tonight by Cutting Crew
- 2. Beat Boy by Bronski Beat
Wow a great dance anthem.
- 1. Eye Of The Tiger by Survivor
I love this track man!
I Live In The 80's!!
By: Patrick Hagan
- 10. My Best Friend's Girl by The Cars
So I like big hair rock, but honestly if my life were a movie the characteristic bass line from this song would definitely be playing in the very beginning. I imagine the title of my life/movie would pop up on the screen just as the chorus began. Despite the lyrics, which are sad, this song has a neat post-modern deconstructionist ironic optimism that allows for the band to deal with the fact that they got dumped and humiliated. Good philosophy for life.
- 9. Africa by Toto
What can I say? Rad.
- 8. Red Red Wine by UB40
Monkeyback and ease up off the sweet deadline. Is that it? Tell me if I'm wrong but I think he said that in the rap at the end.
- 7. Here I Go Again by Whitesnake
There were a lot of bands with the peculiar prefix: "white_", but Whitesnake is by far the best. The rest are playing at your local tavern on Saturday.
- 6. Like a Prayer by Madonna
Come on, you sing along, too. Big hair rock still rules, though.
- 5. Hells Bells by AC/DC
Rock hard, take no prisoners. Come on like a hurricane. This might be from the seventies but I don't care. If you don't like Hell's Bells then choose Highway to Hell or Back in Black. Same idea.
- 4. Naturally by Huey Lewis
This one's a cappella and on some odd album, I can't remember which. Only the blessed will find it in a used music store but truly it will be worth it. Better than Power of Love.
- 3. When It's Love by Van Halen
Van Halen does in fact rock out hard. This one makes me cry.
- 2. These Dreams by Heart
I feel Heart here. I can imagine the day they wrote this one and jammed on it. I mean the sunlight must have been pouring through the windows that day in such a way as to make even the most ardent atheist shed a tear and believe in God.
- 1. Jump by Van Halen
This song changed my life; listening to it makes me jump up and down with my left leg kicking out and my right bent under me, just like DLR in the video.
I think I like more than big hair rock. But sometimes there are some jems that aren't big or hairy and so while at times this list my seem inconsistent you'll just have to trust me, because the eighties were also inconsistent. Often times big and hairy. My recommendation: somebody go out on a limb and give us the best rap songs of the eighties. Excepting anything from the chronic and Naughty By Nature the best rap is absolutely old school eighties.
This list could very possibly change from day to day and depend on my mood as well.
By: Diamond Dave Hauschild
- 10. Down Under by Men At Work
I loved this album, how can you not like this band for the time, just a fun album period.
- 9. Dancing With Myself by Billy Idol
Billy Idol was so huge in the 80's!! And this was my personal favorite song from him, a great rocking tune.
- 8. Hello by Lionel Richie
This guy was king of the love ballads in the 80s, dude had like 5 number one hits in a row or some crazy stuff like that. Lionel is still the man!
- 7. Hot For Teacher by Van Halen
A legendary band who straight up kicks major butt, they were in the prime with 1984 and spawned a lot of pretenders, but this album and song were the real deal.
- 6. No Surrender by Bruce Springsteen
What can I say, he's the Boss, and my personal favorite artist of all time. He was doing his stadium tours and putting on 4 hour concerts in the 80s and there is no other like him!
- 5. Day by Day by The Hooters
This band had a little success nationally in the 80's, but to me they lasted a lot longer than that, they are from my hometown - Philadelphia and actually played at my high school. Very talented musically and made it big in Europe (and locally), too bad they couldn't have been bigger in the US.
- 4. Sledgehammer by Peter Gabriel
Ushered in a whole new way of actually looking at music with his outstanding videos, he pushed the envelope on the whole video scene and put out some great music too.
- 3. Jesse's Girl by Rick Springfield
I don't care what anybody says, this song is great, and Rick Springfield is cool. Great 80's tune.
- 2. Jack & Diane by John Cougar Mellencamp
Absolute classic, nothing else needs to be said.
- 1. Walk This Way by Aerosmith/Run DMC
This song singlehandedly got the bad boys from Boston back into the spotlight and resurrected their careers, made rap and rock more acceptable to a broader audience and showed that rap and rock together had a lot of promise, which is obvious today where most rock acts have an MC and a turntable.
These songs were in no particular order, just great songs that spanned a few genres that I thought captured the 80's for me personally.
- 10. Girls Just Want To Have Fun by Cyndi Lauper
- 9. Say Say Say by Paul McCartney & Michael Jackson
- 8. Harden My Heart by Quarterflash
- 7. I Know What Boys Like by Waitresses
- 6. Lover Girl by Teena Marie
- 5. Somebody's Watching Me by Rockwell
- 4. Our House by Madness
- 3. Pop Muzik by M
- 2. One Night in Bangkok by Murray Head
- 1. White Horse by Laid Back
It's WAY to hard to list only 10...there are SO VERY MANY awesome songs of this decade!
By: Leigha B
- 10. More Than This by Byran Ferry & Roxy Music
I searched for weeks looking for this one & no one seemed to know the artist...actually found a guy @ the music store that sold me all the tapes that had the title "More Than This" on it & allowed me to return the ones that were not the song I wanted...apparetly he was as baffled as I was with this song...those were the days!
- 9. Catch My Fall by Billy Idol
Hard to pick just one Idol song, but always enjoyed the bass rhythm in the song
- 8. Take On Me by Ah-Ha
Classic sound of the 80's pop scene
- 7. Oh L'Amour by Erasure
Great club music.
- 6. The One Thing by INXS
- 5. Nothing But A Good Time by Poison
Ahhh, freshman year in college...what memories!
- 4. Kick Start My Heart by Motley Crue
Good driving song.
- 3. Careless Whisper by Wham!/George michael
The ultimate song for emotions.
- 2. by
- 1. Just Like Heaven by The Cure
Over 3 decades of music & it's still my all time favorite. It doesn't get any better than this one! (at least for me!)
I can't just choose 1 genre from this decade - I like so much of it - pop, rock, dance...so I've listed some of my favs from all of them.
- 10. All In the Way You Get Down by Ray Parker Jr. and Raydio
- 9. You Shoulda Kept A Spare by Ray Parker Jr.
A good song.
- 8. I Just Called To Say I Love You by Stevie Wonder
- 7. Savin' The Day by Alessi
Greatest, the Alessi Bros's best song.
- 6. Stay The Night by Ray Parker Jr.
A great slow dancing.
- 5. It's Our Own Affair by Ray Parker Jr.
A good song.
- 4. A Woman Needs Love (Just Like You Do) by Ray Parker Jr. and Raydio
After "Two Places at the Same Time" flop, Ray wrote his 2nd greatest song.
- 3. In The Heat Of The Night by Ray Parker Jr.
A good slow dancing.
- 2. Jamie by Ray Parker Jr.
A great song recorded after "Ghostbusters" hit.
- 1. Ghostbusters by Ray Parker Jr.
Ray's the best!
Ray Parker Jr. is my favourite artist...do you understand this?
By: Hai Nguyen
- 10. Don't You Forget About Me by Simple Minds
Best soundtrack song of the many 80's movies ( Breakfest Club ). When this song comes out, the 80's kids remember High school and what ever happen to that friend or classmate. They can still play this song at any graduation and it seems up to date. Thsi song also makes us not forget the 80's music.
- 9. True by Spandau Ballet
The ultimate wedding song. Many 80's couples said this was their song.
- 8. Hungry Like The Wolf by Duran Duran
Before all the teeny boppers like New Kids, Blackstreet and N Sync, there was Duran Duran. Staple of MTV in the 80's.
- 7. Always On My Mind by Pet Shop Boys
Not very talked about 80's band. They had many hits. This song is one of the best songs they had. An Elvis cover that turned out to be a very good 80's type song.
- 6. If You Leave by OMD
Another song that makes you want to go out on the dance floor. Another good song from them is secret, the 6 minute version.
- 5. The Promise by When In Rome
Another dancable song, another one of those songs that every kid who grew up in the 80's that got married in the 90's played at their wedding.
- 4. Take On Me by A-Ha
Just a overall good song, music video, and hit.
- 3. Just Can't Get Enough by Depeche Mode
Another song that is very dancable. Background sounds bring you back to the 80's.
- 2. Boy's Don't Cry by The Cure
Its Suppose to be a sad song, but when it comes on it makes you want to dance and feel happy. Also Robert Smith has one of the most unique voices.
- 1. Bizarre Love triangle by New Order
Good Words, good sound, very dancable
- 10. Männer by Herbert Grönemayer
Herbert Grönemayer is one of the best German musican.
- 9. Heroes by David Bowie
Watch the Movie: "Christiane F. Wir Kinder vom Bahnhof Zoo".
- 8. What It Is by Mark Knopfler
Good Guitar solo.
- 7. I Knew You Were Waiting by George Michael w/ Aretha Franklin
Buggy scene "Police Academy".
- 6. Where The Streets Have No Name by U2
"One" of the greatest Bands on Earth.
- 5. Vienna Calling by Falco
Also try: Rock me Amadeus, Der Kommisar, Jeanie usw.
- 4. The Power Of Love by Huey Lewis And The News
Wow... it's powerfull.
- 3. Everything Counts by Depeche Mode
Check out the live version.
- 2. Don't You Forget About Me by Simple Minds
Don't forget to watch the movie "The Breakfast Club"!
- 1. Thriller by Michael Jackson
I've never seen a better music video like this.
I was born in 1974 so I don't really know something about the 80's but everytime I listen to some of those songs I still remember feeling like the little kid I am :-)). There are to many! New Order, Wang Chung, Visage, Van Halen, Whitney Houston, Toto, Suzanne Vega, Samantha Fox, Rio Reiser, Rainbirds, Level 42, Jefferson Starship, Heaven 17, Harald Faltermeyer, Frankie Goes To Hollywood, Fleetwood Mac, Sigue Sigue Sputnik, F.R. David, Eurythmics, Europe, Christopher Cross, Corey Hart, Silicon Dream, Animotion, Bananarama, Bangles, Bonnie Tyler, Christopher Cross, Cyndi Lauper ... Thank you for the great music.
By: Jim Winslow
- 10. Photograph by Def Leppard
You have to have something by the greatest rock group of the eighties and this is the one that started it all for this wonderful group. I actually fell in love with this song before I ever heard when one of my buddies was singing it to himself in class. I asked him what that was and he loaned me the album.
- 9. Hold Me Now by Thompson Twins
What a love story! It makes me think of being in high school and all the girls I liked for about two minutes but especially one I liked for about two years.
- 8. True by Spandau Ballet
What a voice. The lyrics just seem to wail and boy does it sound good when the radio is way up and you can actually hit those notes along the band.
- 7. Life In A Northern Town by The Dream Academy
You notice how many one hit wonder songs were great in this decade. This was one of the best and always reminds of leaving my hometown for the first time.
- 6. Tainted Love by Soft Cell
What a song! This is the song that defines the decade and happens to be my best friend's favorite. I was always jealous of him for that.
- 5. Come On Eileen by Dexy's Midnight Runners
We used to dance our butts off whenever and wherever we heard this. How fast could you go?
- 4. Every Rose Has It's Thorn by Poison
The power ballad anthem for all wanna be metalheads. This has a special place because I had the stupidity of having this be 'our song' for a girl I was once engaged to.
- 3. What About Me by Moving Pictures
The all time feeling sorry for yourself torch song. But, hey, we did that alot in the eighties.
- 2. Do You Believe In Love by Huey Lewis And The News
I idolized this group after this song even though most of the rest of their stuff was crap.
- 1. Jack and Diane by John Cougar
The most prophetic single lyric of all time- "life goes on long after the thrill of living is gone." That lyric pretty much sums up how I feel about the eighties.
What a great decade to grow up. The music was schmaltzy, imperfect and definitely diverse but we loved it. I just wish I could feel the same way about a song I hear for the first time the way I felt back then. Remember the first time you heard 'Everybody Wants to Rule the World" or "Take On Me" or even "Billie Jean"? There are two songs I would like to give special mention to even though they did not make my top ten. "Loverboy" by Billy Ocean is the only song I can ever remember that everybody I knew actually liked at the same time. "We Are The World" is the song that made us feel like we were part of something greater than our little small town.
By: Guilherme Scarpa
- 10. What's Love Got To Do With It? by Tina Turner
Tina came back with this wonderful song...
- 9. Girls Just Wanna Have Fun by Cindi Lauper
Crazy girl...like the 80s.
- 8. Take On Me by A-ha
"Take on me..."
- 7. Sweet Child O' Mine by Guns 'n' Roses
Great 80S rock and roll...
- 6. Bizarre Love Triangle by New Order
I love this song!!!
- 5. Billie Jean by Michael Jackson
Very popular song...even Madonna sang this song during her fisrt tour in 1985.
- 4. Everybody Wants To Rule The World by Tears For Fears
We don't need to say anything...cool!!!
- 3. Every Breath You Take by The Police
Just like the 80S...
- 2. With Or Without You by U2
...The best U2 song!!! When you hear on the radio...you know the lyrics.
- 1. Like A Virgin by Madonna
...Think about Madonna in the first Mtv Video Music Awards...1984
IF I could turn back time...to the 80s
By: Bert Shipp
- 10. I Love Rock 'n' Roll by Joan Jett
Good strong rock, wasn't a bad sort in her day.
- 9. Glory of Love by Peter Cetera
Best love song ever.
- 8. State Of Shock by Michael Jackson & Mick Jagger
Two big names, always boumd to a classic. One radio station in USA played it for 24hrs straight.
- 7. Buffalo Soldier by Bob Marley
- 6. Don't Turn Around by Aswad
Good reggae beat.
- 5. Total Eclipse Of The Heart by Bonnie Tyler
Classic love song.
- 4. Man In The Mirror by Michael Jackson
- 3. Send Me An Angel by Reel Life
I should be so lucky. Good (bike) dance scene in RAD the BMX movie.
- 2. Tainted Love by Soft Cell
Who doesn't know the beat?
- 1. Twist In My Sobriety by Tanita Tikaram
Best song by a mile. Deep, Haunting.
I love the 80's!!!!!!
- 10. The Distance Between Us by Fra Lippo Lippi
- 9. Reach by Pale Fountain
- 8. The First Picture Of You by Lotus Eaters
- 7. Castles In The Air by Colourfields
- 6. The Unguarded Moment by The Church
- 5. Two Rivers by The Adventures
- 4. My Boyish Days by The Care
- 3. Bringing Home The Ashes by Wild Swan
- 2. Love Moves In Strange Way by Blue Zoo
- 1. Worlds Apart by Cactus World News
By: Michael Harter
- 10. Throwing Muses by Dizzy
Such a cool song. Check out Just Say Mao, it's a Sire compilation cd, you know the same guys that took on Depeche Mode, and The Smiths.
- 9. Get into the Groove by Madonna
I'm not a Madonna fan per se, but this song was great, and Crazy For You was a great chill out song.
- 8. Kyrie by Mr Mister
This would be a tie for first place, but I just remembered it now.. Oh well, #8 is just where it will have to be. Both of these songs were absolutley stunning, delivery vocally and lyrically. God, I love these songs!
- 7. Your Love by Outfield
The one, the only Outfield. In the summer of '85, this was the cd to sing to.. Listen to Play Deep again. The whole thing rocks..
- 6. Africa by Toto
Brillant! - That's sums up everything I could say about this amazing song.
- 5. Spies Like Us by Paul McCartney
I have to include this, because it absolutely rocks, and I can't forget to honor the contributions Chevy Chase gave to us, at a time when laughter was a lot easier to come by.
- 4. Dont You Forget About Me by Simple Minds
Too many songs to mention here. Simple Minds should be honored for there talent and versality. This song is a gift, and brings back a time when John Hughes and the Breakfast Club ruled the screen. They could never duplicate the heartfelt honesty and poignant dialogue of the time. Once for the archives, that movie stands out as a hallmark achievement of 80's nostalgia..
- 3. Power of Love by Huey Lewis
Great energy, and the memories of Back to the Future are priceless. That movie was so great! - A rollercoaster ride of richly developed plot, and fast moving story telling...
- 2. I Just Died In Your Arms Tonight by Cutting Crew
If any of you listening out there, remember their Broadcast cd, then you are aware of this amazing song. Very talented and vocally masterful - Go pick up this cd if you can..
- 1. Everybody Wants To The Rule The World by Tears For Fears
For me, this is the quintessential 80's song! A brillant song, with a rocking bridge that just grabs you by surprise and make you want to fly! - Truly a brillant group!
Sure, anything by the Cure, Depeche Mode, or the Smiths. Each in the own right, they were doing things back then, that nobody could duplicate or touch today... Revolutionary. REM - Fall on me; Indigo Girls- Closer to Fine; Duran Duran - Rio, View to a Kill; Is it Love - Mr. Mister; Bangles- Bell Jar/Hazy Shade of Winter - remember that killer movie with Andrew McCarthy, and Robert Downy Jr, and that scene in the hallway with Jami Gertz- God, she was sexy! (I'm talking about Less Than Zero of course).. Also, the Breakfast Club, St Elmos Fire, Rocky 4 and The Lost Boys soundtracks.. and any other great 80's song I forgot to mention.. Thanks for reading.
- 10. Point Of No Return by Expose
Mesmerizing and very dancable I thought when I first heard it...she sounds almost Arabic in this one.
- 9. Two Of Hearts by Stacy Q
I was surprised no one mentioned this one anywhere not even Once!
- 8. Insecuriy by Stacy Q
Every girl was singing along to this one.
- 7. Safety Dance by Men Without Hats
Always loved to dance to this one! And if you don't dance than you are no friend of mine...
- 6. Drive Me Wild by Vanity 6
Sorry had to put her in here...everyone forgot about this one no doubt..."Oooh look at me I'm a cadillac, a brand new convertible child,I've never been driven baby you're the first come on baby drive me wild. ....I like the lyrics, very explicit and sexy for their time.
- 5. Sex Shooter by Appolonia 6
Well hey if I put Vanity here Appolonia would be mad if I didn't mention her, too! Cool for their time........
- 4. Cities In Dust by Siouxsie And The Banshees
I Love Siouxsie and this was technically an eighties song so I am just representing......with all due respect.......besides it was a kickass song.
- 3. Sex Dwarf by Soft Cell
"I would like you on a long black leash"......(who wouldn't!) turning disco dollies to a life of vice.......(love this one)
- 2. Obsession by Animotion
No one can walk away when this song starts on the dancefloor..... Not if you are a real eighties fan!
- 1. Amadeus by Falco
Heard it the first time in school and felt a very morphin transformation with this one.....everyone stopped dead in their tracks for this one!
Ofcourse Pet Shop Boys, New Order, The Police, The Smiths, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Berlin, Information Society, and countless others...........
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