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Best Songs From The 80s - Top Songs From The 1980s

Updated on April 10, 2015

Listen to "Sweet Child O' Mine"

# 30 Sweet Child O' Mine

Artist: Guns N' Roses


Released in 1988


"Sweet Child O' Mine" is Guns N' Roses only number one hit in the states. It reached number six on the U.K. charts. It has been certified gold twice and once platinum.

Listen to "I Think We're Alone Now"

# 29 I Think We're Alone Now

Artist: Tiffany


Released in 1987


The single spent two weeks at the top of the charts in the states and three weeks at number one in the U.K.

Listen to "Eternal Flame"

# 28 Eternal Flame

Artist: The Bangles


Released in 1989


The song was inspired by two eternal flames burning at the gravesite of Elvis Presley. "Eternal Flame" reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. The single also reached number one in an additional nine other countries.

Listen to "Faith"

# 27 Faith

Artist: George Michael


Released in 1987


"Faith" was the top selling single of 1988 and reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. "Faith" was certified gold in the USA, the Netherlands, and in Canada.

Listen to "I Love Rock n' Roll"

# 26 I Love Rock 'n' Roll

Artist: Joan Jett and the Blackhearts


Released in 1981


Jett's version of "I Love Rock 'n' Roll" peaked at number one in the United States, Sweden, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.




Listen to "Total Eclipse of the Heart"

# 25 Total Eclipse of the Heart

Artist: Bonnie Tyler


Released in 1983


"Total Eclipse of the Heart" was Bonnie Tyler's biggest hit and was the fifth best selling single of 1983. Tyler sold over 9 million copies of the single.

Listen to "Jessie's Girl"

# 24 Jessie's Girl

Artist: Rick Springfield


Released in 1981


For two weeks "Jessie's Girl" stayed at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 charts and won Springfield a Grammy Award for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance.

Listen to "With or Without You"

# 23 With or Without You

Artist: U2


Released in 1987


From the album "The Joshua Tree", this single became U2's first hit in the USA. "With or Without You" remained at the top of the charts for three weeks.

Listen to "We Got the Beat"

# 22 We Got The Beat

Artist: The Go-Go's


Released in 1982


This single was The Go-Go's biggest hit and peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100 charts, staying there for three weeks.

Listen to "Jack and Diane"

# 21 Jack and Diane

Artist: John Cougar Mellencamp


Released in 1982


"Jack and Diane" reaching number one on the Billboard Hot 100 charts and stayed there for four weeks. It has been chosen by the RIAA as one of the songs of the century and is Mellencamp's biggest hit to date.

Listen to "Livin' On A Prayer"

# 20 Livin' On A Prayer

Artist: Bon Jovi


Released in 1986


"Livin' On a Prayer" is from Bon Jovi's highly successful album "Slippery When Wet." The single gave Bon Jovi there first number one hit on the mainstream charts. The single has gone triple platinum and has sold over 3 million digital downloads.

Listen to "Hit Me With Your Best Shot"

# 19 Hit Me With Your Best Shot

Artist: Pat Benatar


Released in 1980


The single reached number nine on the Billboard Hot 100 charts and became Benatar's first hit.

Listen to "Another One Bites the Dust"

# 18 Another One Bites the Dust

Artist: Queen


Released in 1980


"Another One Bites the Dust" won an American Music Award for Favorite Rock Single and top the charts in the USA, the U.K., Canada, Spain, and Israel.

Listen to "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun"

# 17 Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

Artist: Cyndi Lauper


Released in 1983


The song reached number two on the Billboard Hot 100 charts and became a worldwide hit for Lauper. "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" received two Grammy Award nominations but did not win either nomination.

Listen to "Every Breath You Take"

# 16 Every Breath You Take

Artist: The Police


Released in 1983


"Every Breath You Take" was nominated for three Grammy Awards, winning Best Pop Performance from a Duo or a Group. "Rolling Stone" magazine ranked the song as number 84 on the list of the 500 greatest songs ever.

Listen to "Tell Her About It"

# 15 Tell Her About It

Artist: Billy Joel


Released in 1983


Reaching number one on the Billboard Hot 100 charts and selling over 500,000 copies, "Tell Her About It" became one of Joel's most successful hits to date. The single was certified gold.



Listen to "I Wanna Dance With Somebody"

# 14 I Wanna Dance With Somebody

Artist: Whitney Houston


Released in 1987


The single top the charts in thirteen different countries including the USA and the U.K. The song went on to sell over one million copes and at the time was Houston's biggest single to date. It was only to be surpassed by "I Will Always Love You" in the 1990s.

Listen to "9 to 5"

# 13 9 to 5

Artist: Dolly Parton


Released in 1980


"9 to 5" was written for the movie "9 to 5", which Dolly Parton starred in. Dolly Parton became the second woman in history to top both the Billboard Hot 100 charts and the Billboard U.S. Country charts at the same time.

Listen to "The Tide is High"

# 12 The Tide Is High

Artist: Blondie


Released in 1980


"The Tide is High" was Blondie's third number one hit. It wasn't just a hit in the states, it was a worldwide success and the single was certified gold in the United States.

Listen to "Tainted Love"

# 11 Tainted Love

Artist: Soft Cell


Released in 1981


"Tainted Love" peaked very quickly at number one in the U.K. and became the best selling single of the year in the U.K. In the states, "Tainted Love" reached number 8 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. Even though it never reached number one in the USA it remained on the charts for an incredible forty-three weeks!

Listen to "Come on Eileen"

# 10 Come On Eileen

Artist: Dexy's Midnight Runners


Released in 1982


The song peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 charts and hit number one in Australia, Belgium, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, and the U.K.

Listen to "Like A Virgin"

# 9 Like a Virgin

Artist: Madonna


Released in 1984


"Like a Virgin" is one of Madonna's most recognizable songs and has been covered by many artists and appeared in many movies. "Like a Virgin" was Madonna's first number one hit on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. The single has been certified gold in the states.

Listen to "Beat It"

# 8 Beat It

Artist: Michael Jackson


Released in 1982


"Beat It" won Grammy Awards for Record of the Year and Best Male Rock Vocal Performance. "Beat It' is known for it's amazing guitar solo.

Listen to "Red, Red, Wine"

# 7 Red Red Wine

Artist: UB40


Released in 1983/ Re-Released in 1985


When "Red, Red, Wine" was re-released in the states it became a chart topping hit, reaching number one on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. "Red, Red, Wine" was originally recorded by Neil Diamond in 1968 but it is UB40's version that has become famous.



Listen to "I Want To Know What Love Is"

# 6 I Want To Know What Love Is

Artist: Foreigner


Released in 1984


This power ballad peaked at number one on the hit charts in both the U.K. and the United States. It is Foreigner's biggest hit to date and it is still regularly played on Adult Contemporary music stations.

Listen to "Take On Me"

# 5 Take On Me

Artist: A-ha


Released in 1984


"Take on Me" was A-ha's only song to reach the charts in the United States. It peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. The music video was considered groundbreaking at the time it was released and the music video became just as famous as the song did.

Listen to "Eye of the Tiger"

# 4 Eye Of The Tiger

Artist: Survivor


Released in 1982


"Eye of the Tiger" was written for "Rocky III." The single reached number one on the charts and remained there for six consecutive weeks in the USA. It sold over 2 million vinyl copies and is still one of the most recognizable songs from the 1980s.

Listen to "I Just Called To Say I Love You"

# 3 I Just Called To Say I Love You

Artist: Stevie Wonder


Released in 1984


"I Just Called To Say I Love You" is one of Stevie Wonder's biggest hits to date. The single reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 charts and remained there for three weeks. The single also won Stevie a Golden Globe and an Academy Award for Best Original Song.

Listen to "Karma Chameleon"

# 2 Karma Chameleon

Artist: Culture Club


Released in 1983


"Karma Chameleon" peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 charts and stayed there for three weeks straight. It also hit number one in sixteen other countries across the world, making it a worldwide success.



Listen to "Don't You Want Me"

# 1 Don't You Want Me

Artist: The Human League


Released in 1981


"Don't You Want Me" topped the Billboard Hot 100 charts for three weeks in a row and sold over 1,560,000 copies in the U.K. alone. It was ranked the sixth biggest hit of the year according to Billboard magazine.

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