The rules: we made room for one (1) song per artist. So if a band had 5 great songs during the 80s, only one of them is going to make this list. Sorry, Genesis. Also, the songs have been selected based on their “80s-ness.” In other words, when you close your eyes and think of the 1980s, hopefully these are the songs that play in the background of your Miami Vice fantasy. Enjoy.

The List

100. Kim Carnes – Bette Davis Eyes

99. Rod Stewart – Young Turks

98. The Clash – Rock the Casbah

97. Yello – Oh Yeah

96. ABC – Poison Arrow

95. Jan Hammer – Crockett’s Theme

94. Midnight Oil – Beds are Burning

93. John Parr – St. Elmo’s Fire (Man in Motion)

92. Murray Head – One Night in Bangkok

91. Starship – Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now

90. Pretenders – Brass in Pockett

89. AC/DC – You Shook Me All Night Long

88. Love and Rockets – So Alive

87. Eurythmics – Here Comes the Rain Again

86. Tom Petty – Running Down a Dream

85. Steve Perry – Oh Sherrie

84. Toto – Africa

83. Crowded House – Don’t Dream it’s Over

82. Golden Earring – Twilight Zone

81. Lionel Richie – All Night Long

80. Buggles – Video Killed the Radio Star

79. Blondie – The Tide is High

78. Pointer Sisters – Neutron Dance

77. The Human League – Don’t You Want Me

76. Sergio Mendes – Never Gonna Let You Go

75. Dire Straits – Money for Nothing

74. Loverboy – Working for the Weekend

73. Glass Tiger – Don’t Forget Me (When I’m Gone)

72. Richard Marx – Right Here Waiting

71. Duran Duran – Hungry Like the Wolf

70. Billy Idol – Mony Mony

69. Run-D.M.C. with Steven Tyler & Joe Perry of Aerosmith – Walk this Way

68. Bill Medley & Jennifer Warnes – (I’ve Had) The Time of My Life

67. John Mellencamp – Pink Houses

66. Night Ranger – Sister Christian

65. Howard Jones – No One is to Blame

64. Talking Heads – And She Was

63. Dan Hartman – I Can Dream About You

62. Todd Rundgren – Bang the Drum All Day

61. Mr. Mister – Broken Wings

60. Huey Lewis & the News – The Power of Love

59. Billy Joel – Uptown Girl

58. Stray Cats – Stray Cat Strut

57. Chris de Burgh – The Lady in Red

56. a-ha – Take on Me

55. Don Henley – The End of the Innocence

54. Madonna – Like a Prayer

53. Fine Young Cannibals – She Drives Me Crazy

52. The Commodores – Lady (You Bring Me Up)

51. Cutting Crew – (I Just) Died In Your Arms

50. Simple Minds – Alive and Kicking

49. Boy Meets Girl – Waiting for a Star to Fall

48. Depeche Mode – Never Let Me Down Again

47. Yes – Owner of a Lonely Heart

46. Modern English – I Melt With You

45. Sheena Easton – Strut

44. Bruce Hornsby & the Range – The Way it Is

43. Bryan Adams – Summer of ’69

42. Rick Springfield – Jessie’s Girl

41. Steve Winwood – Higher Love

40. Benny Mardones – Into the Night

39. U2 – I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For

38. Eric Carmen – Hungry Eyes

37. Foreigner – Waiting for a Girl Like You

36. Simply Red – Holding Back the Years

35. Kool & the Gang – Celebration

34. DeBarge – Rhythm of the Night

33. A Flock of Seagulls – I Ran (So Far Away)

32. Gregory Abbott – Shake You Down

31. Joe Jackson – Steppin’ Out

30. The B-52’s – Love Shack

29. Men at Work – Down Under

28. Genesis – Invisible Touch

27. John Waite – Missing You

26. After the Fire – Der Kommissar

25. Matthew Wilder – Break My Stride

24. Robert Palmer – Addicted to Love

23. Dexy’s Midnight Runners – Come on Eileen

22. Bon Jovi – Livin’ on a Prayer

21. The Police – Synchronicity II

20. Spandau Ballet – True

19. Kenny Loggins – Danger Zone

18. R.E.M. – Stand

17. Hall & Oates – You Make My Dreams

16. Tears for Fears – Everybody Wants to Rule the World

15. Prince – 1999

14. The Whispers – Rock Steady

13. Mike + the Mechanics – The Living Years

12. George Michael – Father Figure

11. Billy Vera & the Beaters – At This Moment

10. Beach Boys – Kokomo

9. UB40 – Red, Red Wine

8. Harold Faltermeyer – Axel F

7. Pet Shop Boys – West End Girls

6. Journey – Don’t Stop Believin’

5. Billy Ocean – Caribbean Queen

4. Paul Simon – You Can Call Me Al

3. Phil Collins – In the Air Tonight

2. Wham! featuring George Michael – Careless Whisper

1. Michael Jackson – Billie Jean

2 Responses to “Top 100 Songs of the 1980s”


  1. I started boycotting Michael Jackson back in 1994 or so when he allegedly paid off some of the families of the young boys he was allegedly molesting.

  2. 80s Music Says:

    Great list of 80s songs and I agree with most of them. Gotta love Kokomo!

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