#1 – Michael Jackson – “Billie Jean” – (1982)

Well here it is. “Billie Jean” was revolutionary in every way and stands as one of the best, most important songs in history. The bass line is one-of-a-kind and instantly recognizable. Michael Jackson was at his very best with this track and it’s a big part of the reason why Thriller is the number one selling album of all time. The song hit #1 in the U.S. & UK and several other countries and went on to win multiple Grammys. The music video almost single-handedly threw MTV into the spotlight and made the channel a success. The video is iconic – with the light-up sidewalk and the amazing dance moves that Jackson would later go on to showcase on the TV special Motown 25. During his performance he debuted a new thing called the “moonwalk” while wearing a black sequin jacket and a lone white glove – forever his signature move and look. To think that producer Quincy Jones didn’t originally want this song on the album is kinda scary. Would Michael Jackson be The King of Pop without this single? Maybe, but the title wouldn’t be anywhere near as convincing. This song (and its performer) are legendary. Both had such a large effect on the recording industry that it borders on immeasurable and I think it’s the perfect song to end our countdown on.

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