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80s TV Theme Tunes

Updated on February 24, 2017
RetroBrothers profile image

Martin has been a software developer for many years. This is mixed with a passion for retro machines and game,

80s Theme Tunes with Free Big Hair!

If it gets a thumbs up from 'The Hoff' - it's gotta be cool
If it gets a thumbs up from 'The Hoff' - it's gotta be cool

80's TV Theme Tunes

80s Theme Tunes

If you were a child during the 1980's as I was, there must be many television theme tunes that stick in your mind.

Some from your favourite shows that you watched every week, some from programmes the 'grown ups' watched; whatever the case there were plenty that you will always recognise.

You may have even been lucky enough to own some of the retro toys from the show - you couldn't beat re-enacting The A Team with your very own classic toys.

Here is a selection of some of my favourite 80's theme tunes that never fail to bring floods of nostalgia surging back.

I hope some of you will enjoy them as much as I do.


What kind of name is Stringfellow Hawke anyway?
What kind of name is Stringfellow Hawke anyway?

Airwolf Opening Title Music

Airwolf Music

A great show that was watched by many on a Saturday (here in the UK anyway) - Airwolf had the lot.

The 'copter was cool, Jean Michael Vincent was cool, heck even Ernest Borgnine was cool!

For some reason we all accepted 'Stringfellow' as a legitimate and completely normal name too! You just can't beat the 1980's for over the top names for our TV and movie heroes.

To top it all off this show has one of the most iconic theme tunes of the decade.

Fire off a Sunburst and let it roll!

Magnum PI TV Show

Tom Selleck was great as Thomas Magnum, the loud shirted private detective who solved crime in Hawaii
Tom Selleck was great as Thomas Magnum, the loud shirted private detective who solved crime in Hawaii

Magnum PI Music

Magnum PI

Magnum was a private detective show starring perhaps the only man to make a moustache look legit; Tom Selleck (my sincere apologies to Dabney Coleman).

Based in Hawai, our hero drove around in a rather cool red Ferrari 308 solving crimes and mysteries. All the while had plenty of time to meet rather lovely ladies, indulge in a spot of swimming and surfing, and dined out on plenty of Hawaiian cuisine.

Oh, and our Magnum always managed to annoy his upper class (English of course!) 'boss', Higgins. Those lighthearted moments really added to the show.

The opening theme with it's dramatic drums and catchy guitar riff set the excitement levels as soon as the first bar kicked in.

"Oh I say Magnum!"

The A Team TV Show

Face, Murdock, BA and Hannibal. If you can find them and no-one else can help...
Face, Murdock, BA and Hannibal. If you can find them and no-one else can help...

The A Team Intro

The A Team

The A Team.

In 1972....

We all know the blurb, we all know just how ridiculous the show was, and we all know that a cabbage cannon will not defend you against a hundred men armed with machine guns, handguns and grenades.

But this was the 'A Team', the TV show where ten thousand rounds could be expended and barely a flesh-wound would appear.

Who remembers the episode where a helicopter crashed into a mountain side and exploded in a huge fireball, only for the occupants to crawl out of the wreckage with cuts and bruises?

The A Team was always funny, and the show featured a bunch of cool characters with an even cooler theme tune.

All together now, Da Da Da Daaaaaa.....

Knight Rider TV Show

Michael Knight could talk to KITT via his watch
Michael Knight could talk to KITT via his watch

Knight Rider Intro

Knight Rider

With his excruciatingly tight jeans and and coiffured demi-wave perm-do, the 'Hoff' lit up our screens with the best car ever in Knight Rider.

Despite the 'Hoff' being the main man, the car really was the star of the show, and 'KITT' actually added an air of mystery to the Tranz-Am brand.

I remember seeing a few folks driving around in their Ford Capri's and Escort's with one of those red 'whooshing' lights stuck to the front grille. If anyone reading this had one, please let me know!

Aside from the car, the theme tune (with it's dark and mysterious voice over) must go down as one of the best ever...

Hill Street Blues TV Show

Hill Street Blues was an excellent show with an excellent theme tune
Hill Street Blues was an excellent show with an excellent theme tune

Hill Street Blues Intro

Hill Street Blues

A change of style here with the great American cop drama, Hill Street Blues.

Mike Post (who themed lots of tv shows during the 1980s) once again came up with a memorable piece of music.

The show had a lot of characters that we all remember, and the theme tune sticks in your mind more than any other 'cop style' show that I can think of.

A very good piece of music that has not dated like most of the others on this little page.

V TV Show

The Visitors arrived to destroy the Ozone layer by using vast quantities of hair-spray
The Visitors arrived to destroy the Ozone layer by using vast quantities of hair-spray

V: The Final Battle Theme

V - The Final Battle

So who else was amazed by V back in the early 80's?

The mini-series was quite revolutionary back then and had the nation gripped from original (mini-series) right through to the conclusion in 'The Final Battle'.

Okay, so 'The Final Battle' wasn't quite up to the standards of the original, but it was still great viewing and we had some great moments from Michael Ironside as Ham Tyler, as well as Marc Singer as Mike Donovan.

So to finish off we end with the theme to V:The Final Battle - showing how to properly use a synthesiser to make a haunting and moody piece of music.

Oh - and Jane Badler as Diana, phwoooar eh?

Somebody else loves this music...

CHiPS officers get down to some 80's TV tunes
CHiPS officers get down to some 80's TV tunes

Any other fans of 80's TV Music?

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    • RetroBrothers profile imageAUTHOR

      Martin Allan 

      6 years ago from Sunny Scotland

      Yes, the music to Street Hawk is indeed classic. I featured it on 80s Theme Tunes Part II :-)

    • profile image

      Paul Rush 

      6 years ago from UK

      I would agree with most of those theme tune choices although I think the Airwolf video you linked to wasn't that great as it wasn't the original. There are better versions of the Airwolf main theme here: and

      'Knight Rider' was such a great theme too, and you definitely picked the correct one of the three 'V' themes. But you defo missed a great one with Tangerine Dream's mid-80s awesomeness in 'Street Hawk'.

    • MikeJones76 profile image


      10 years ago from Chicago, IL

      Airwolf was translated in Brazil to, literally: Eagle of Steel! LOL!

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      Haha, I used to watch all of those apart from Hill St Blues.

      Hey, remember The Equalizer: That had a wicked theme tune too :-)



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