The Greatest Musical Artists of the '80s

210k votes 14k voters 999k views 392 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.
Collection Photo: user uploaded image
  • 51 ReRanks
    • Women
    • Men
    • Age
    • Region
  • 2 See list ranked by
Z
G Options B Comments & Embed 2rerank list
  1. 1
    + 2,925
    - 2,850

    the people's #1
    Thriller, Bad, Off the Wall

    ;
  2. 2
    + 2,770
    - 2,414


    A Night at the Opera, Queen, Innuendo

    ;
  3. 3
    + 2,930
    - 2,025

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

    ;
  4. 4
    + 1,554
    - 2,105

    most listed
    The Joshua Tree, War, Achtung Baby

    ;
  5. 5
    + 1,760
    - 2,108


    Synchronicity, Ghost in the Machine, Zenyattà Mondatta

    ;
  6. 6
    + 2,418
    - 1,624


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

    ;
  7. 7
    + 1,781
    - 2,340

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Purple Rain, Sign 'O' the Times, 1999

    ;
  8. 8
    + 1,532
    - 1,912

    often listed
    Rio, Come Undone, Greatest

    ;
  9. 9
    + 1,909
    - 2,245

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

    ;
  10. 10
    + 1,735
    - 1,658

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

    ;
  11. 11
    + 2,128
    - 1,304

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

    ;
  12. 12
    + 1,325
    - 915


    Face Value, Both Sides, No Jacket Required

    ;
  13. 13
    + 1,798
    - 1,506


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

    ;
  14. 14
    + 1,897
    - 1,367


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

    ;
  15. 15
    + 1,580
    - 1,650

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

    ;
  16. 16
    + 1,453
    - 1,341


    Van Halen, 1984, Diver Down

    ;
  17. 17
    + 1,632
    - 776

    ranked low on reranks
    Escape, Frontiers, Evolution

    ;
  18. 18
    + 1,834
    - 902

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

    ;
  19. 19
    + 1,396
    - 1,181


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

    ;
  20. 20
    + 971
    - 909


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

    ;
  21. 21
    + 1,104
    - 1,052


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

    ;
  22. 22
    + 1,314
    - 1,150


    Toys in the Attic, Pump, Permanent Vacation

    ;
  23. 23
    + 1,056
    - 896


    The Stranger, Piano Man, 52nd Street

    ;
  24. 24
    + 861
    - 640


    Kick, Full Moon, Dirty Hearts

    ;
  25. 25
    + 1,294
    - 927


    Slippery When Wet, New Jersey, Cross Road

    ;
  26. 26
    + 1,072
    - 959


    Murmur, Green, Automatic for the People

    ;
  27. 27
    + 1,056
    - 912


    Master of Puppets, Ride the Lightning, Metallica

    ;
  28. 28
    + 1,061
    - 810


    Parallel Lines, Heart of Glass, Blondie

    ;
  29. 29
    + 940
    - 775


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

    ;
  30. 30
    + 1,214
    - 976


    Hysteria, Pyromania, On Through the Night

    ;
  31. 31
    + 941
    - 583


    4, Complete Greatest Hits, Agent Provocateur

    ;
  32. 32
    + 754
    - 447


    Candy-O, The Cars, Just What I Needed: The Cars Anthology

    ;
  33. 33
    + 984
    - 996


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

    ;
  34. 34
    + 976
    - 803


    Brothers in Arms, Dire Straits, Making Movies

    ;
  35. 35
    + 1,463
    - 1,217


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

    ;
  36. 36
    + 799
    - 734


    Stop Making Sense, Remain in Light, Fear of Music

    ;
  37. 37
    + 832
    - 700


    Dreamboat Annie, Little Queen, Heart

    ;
  38. 38
    + 712
    - 689


    Songs in the Key of Life, Innervisions, Talking Book

    ;
  39. 39
    + 832
    - 657


    Tres Hombres, Eliminator, Rio Grande Mud

    ;
  40. 40
    + 773
    - 544


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

    ;
  41. 41
    + 762
    - 571


    Sports, Fore!, Picture This

    ;
  42. 42
    + 636
    - 512


    Peter Gabriel, Us, Security

    ;
  43. 43
    + 734
    - 398

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

    ;
  44. 44
    + 626
    - 701

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Paul's Boutique, Licensed to Ill, Check Your Head

    ;
  45. 45
    + 828
    - 683


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

    ;
  46. 46
    + 659
    - 548


    Business as Usual, Cargo, '81 - '85 / Business as Usual

    ;
  47. 47
    + 789
    - 309

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

    ;
  48. 48
    + 749
    - 553


    H2O, Maneater, Abandoned Luncheonette

    ;
  49. 49
    + 486
    - 179

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

    ;
  50. 50
    + 662
    - 595


    London Calling, The Clash, Black Market Clash

    ;
393 +

Something missing? Add it!

L List Options 2 Rerank List B Comments & Embed z Share Next List >