The Greatest Musical Artists of the '80s

220k votes 14k voters 1M views 478 items tags f p @

List Criteria: This list is all about amazing musical artists of the '80s, so vote up your favorites!

The greatest and most prolific artists of music's most colorful decade are remembered on this list. This list is based solely on the artists' work in the 1980s. Though, there may be better George Michael, better RHCP, better Sade, or better Sting (okay, maybe not better Sting), in previous or later decades, we will acknowledge each artists for the impact they made in the '80s. What was your favorite 1980s music? Who do you think were the greatest musical artists of the '80s?

From synth pop, to hair metal, to the rise of punk rock, to the fall of disco, to the birth of hip-hop, all genres are recognized, including classic albums, as long as they were the best of the best during this fabulous decade. Do you prefer 80s rock bands over top pop from the era? Vote up all of your favorite 80s bands and artists who transformed the music scene during the decade, and add anyone who isn't already on the list.

Just make sure they're were making some of the top 80s music we know and love.
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  1. 1
    + 3,047
    - 2,943

    the people's #1 & most listed
    Thriller, Bad, Off the Wall

    ;
  2. 2
    + 2,904
    - 2,474


    A Night at the Opera, Queen, Innuendo

    ;
  3. 3
    + 3,036
    - 2,102

    ranked low on reranks
    Like a Virgin, Like a Prayer, Music

    ;
  4. 4
    + 1,621
    - 2,192


    The Joshua Tree, War, Achtung Baby

    ;
  5. 5
    + 1,892
    - 2,396


    Purple Rain, Sign 'O' the Times, 1999

    ;
  6. 6
    + 1,843
    - 2,167


    Synchronicity, Ghost in the Machine, Zenyattà Mondatta

    ;
  7. 7
    + 2,472
    - 1,700


    The Bodyguard: Original Soundtrack Album, Whitney Houston, My Love Is Your ...

    ;
  8. 8
    + 1,614
    - 1,972

    often listed
    Rio, Come Undone, Greatest

    ;
  9. 9
    + 1,985
    - 2,309

    often listed
    Appetite for Destruction, G N' R Lies, Use Your Illusion I

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  10. 10
    + 1,894
    - 1,548


    The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, Hunky Dory, ...

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  11. 11
    + 2,198
    - 1,357

    ranked low on reranks
    Faith, Listen Without Prejudice, Volume 1

    ;
  12. 12
    + 1,399
    - 963


    Face Value, Both Sides, No Jacket Required

    ;
  13. 13
    + 1,805
    - 1,715

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Back in Black, Highway to Hell, Let There Be Rock

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  14. 14
    + 1,975
    - 1,410


    Songs From the Big Chair, The Hurting, Everybody Wants to Rule the World ...

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  15. 15
    + 1,649
    - 1,693

    often listed
    Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This), Touch, Be Yourself Tonight

    ;
  16. 16
    + 1,519
    - 1,373


    Van Halen, 1984, Diver Down

    ;
  17. 17
    + 1,708
    - 816

    ranked low on reranks
    Escape, Frontiers, Evolution

    ;
  18. 18
    + 1,895
    - 930

    ranked low on reranks
    She's So Unusual, True Colors, Girls Just Want to Have Fun

    ;
  19. 19
    + 1,034
    - 939


    Disintegration, Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me, Boys Don’t Cry

    ;
  20. 20
    + 1,173
    - 1,080


    Violator, Songs of Faith and Devotion, Music for the Masses

    ;
  21. 21
    + 1,437
    - 1,219


    Private Dancer, What's Love Got to Do With It, Simply the Best

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  22. 22
    + 1,368
    - 1,183


    Toys in the Attic, Pump, Permanent Vacation

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  23. 23
    + 1,109
    - 829


    Parallel Lines, Heart of Glass, Blondie

    ;
  24. 24
    + 1,121
    - 983


    Murmur, Green, Automatic for the People

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  25. 25
    + 848
    - 321

    ranked low on reranks
    The Wall, The Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here

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  26. 26
    + 1,111
    - 942


    Master of Puppets, Ride the Lightning, Metallica

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  27. 27
    + 910
    - 671


    Kick, Full Moon, Dirty Hearts

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  28. 28
    + 1,105
    - 926


    The Stranger, Piano Man, 52nd Street

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  29. 29
    + 1,355
    - 955


    Slippery When Wet, New Jersey, Cross Road

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  30. 30
    + 807
    - 465

    ranked low on reranks
    Candy-O, The Cars, Just What I Needed: The Cars Anthology

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  31. 31
    + 842
    - 759


    Stop Making Sense, Remain in Light, Fear of Music

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  32. 32
    + 988
    - 606

    ranked low on reranks
    4, Complete Greatest Hits, Agent Provocateur

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  33. 33
    + 985
    - 798


    Rebel Yell, Happy Holidays, Idol Songs: 11 of the Best

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  34. 34
    + 1,276
    - 1,001


    Hysteria, Pyromania, On Through the Night

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  35. 35
    + 1,012
    - 823


    Brothers in Arms, Dire Straits, Making Movies

    ;
  36. 36
    + 1,021
    - 1,024


    Born to Run, Born in the U.S.A., The Rising

    ;
  37. 37
    + 1,496
    - 1,249


    Do You Really Want to Hurt Me, Culture Club, Colour by Numbers

    ;
  38. 38
    + 764
    - 303

    ranked low on reranks
    Rumours, Fleetwood Mac, Tango in the Night

    ;
  39. 39
    + 739
    - 719

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Songs in the Key of Life, Innervisions, Talking Book

    ;
  40. 40
    + 869
    - 719


    Dreamboat Annie, Little Queen, Heart

    ;
  41. 41
    + 697
    - 610


    London Calling, The Clash, Black Market Clash

    ;
  42. 42
    + 811
    - 566


    Hunting High and Low, Minor Earth | Major Sky, Take On Me

    ;
  43. 43
    + 805
    - 588


    Sports, Fore!, Picture This

    ;
  44. 44
    + 862
    - 677


    Tres Hombres, Eliminator, Rio Grande Mud

    ;
  45. 45
    + 533
    - 196

    ranked low on reranks
    Hotel California, Eagles Greatest Hits, Volume 2

    ;
  46. 46
    + 653
    - 726

    often listed
    Paul's Boutique, Licensed to Ill, Check Your Head

    ;
  47. 47
    + 772
    - 417

    ranked low on reranks
    Crimes of Passion, Greatest Hits, Best Shots

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  48. 48
    + 675
    - 527


    Peter Gabriel, Us, Security

    ;
  49. 49
    + 868
    - 696


    The Last DJ, Damn the Torpedoes, Into the Great Wide Open

    ;
  50. 50
    + 699
    - 467


    Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, Disney's Sing-Along: The Lion King, Captain ...

    ;
479 +

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