The Greatest Musical Artists of the '80s Bands/Musicians
Ultimate List
21  reranks 35,850 votes 1,962 voters 163,809 views more info

The Greatest Musical Artists of the '80s

List Criteria: Best musicians who were active in the 1980s, judged on the quality of their '80s projects.

The greatest and most prolific artist of music's most colorful decade are remembered on this list. As I did with the greatest albums and artists of the '90s, I decided to do the same for the artist that broke ground and expanded and influenced generations to come. Keep in mind, 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...okay, maybe not better Sting, in previous or future decades, we will acknowledge each artists for the impact they made in 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, and classic albums, equally classic singles should also play a hand in how people vote on the countdown of legends.
List is ranked by a combination of each item's votes & positioning in reranks
  • 21 ReRanks
    • Women
    • Men
    • Age
    • Region
  • See list ranked by
</> Rerank List
Score
  1. 1
    Up 484
    Down 528

    the people's #1 & most listed Motown Sound, Rock music, Electronic music

    open report item
  2. 2
    Up 438
    Down 408

    Pop music, Rock music, Electronic music

    open report item
  3. 3
    Up 341
    Down 319

    Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music

    open report item
  4. 4
    Up 365
    Down 437

    Hip hop music, Synthpop, New Wave

    open report item
  5. 5
    Up 385
    Down 473

    Pop music, Rock music, Heavy metal

    open report item
  6. 6
    Up 292
    Down 449

    often listed & ranked high on reranks New Wave, 2 Tone, Ska punk

    open report item
  7. 7
    Up 313
    Down 308

    ranked low on reranks Rock music, Psychedelic pop, Electronic music

    open report item
  8. 8
    Up 289
    Down 331

    Pop music, Dance-pop, Contemporary R&B

    open report item
  9. 9
    Up 355
    Down 389

    Blues-rock, Boogie rock, Rock music

    open report item
  10. 10
    Up 286
    Down 303

    Blue-eyed soul, Synthpop, New Wave

    open report item
  11. 11
    Up 266
    Down 445

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music

    open report item
  12. 12
    Up 247
    Down 283

    New Wave, Gothic rock, Rock music

    open report item
  13. 13
    Up 240
    Down 180

    ranked low on reranks Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music

    open report item
  14. 14
    Up 154
    Down 143

    New Wave, Rock music, Punk funk

    open report item
  15. 15
    Up 224
    Down 221

    Jangle pop, Alternative rock, College rock

    open report item
  16. 16
    Up 222
    Down 253

    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music

    open report item
  17. 17
    Up 196
    Down 223

    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music

    open report item
  18. 18
    Up 192
    Down 221

    Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    open report item
  19. 19
    Up 253
    Down 377

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Rock music, Alternative rock, Punk rock

    open report item
  20. 20
    Up 224
    Down 359

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music

    open report item
  21. 21
    Up 172
    Down 166

    New Wave, Rock music, Dance-rock

    open report item
  22. 22
    Up 171
    Down 166

    Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music

    open report item
  23. 23
    Up 264
    Down 269

    Celtic rock, Blues-rock, Rock music

    open report item
  24. 24
    Up 213
    Down 215

    Rock music, Dance-pop, Rhythm and blues

    open report item
  25. 25
    Up 236
    Down 310

    Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    open report item
  26. 26
    Up 215
    Down 255

    Synthpop, New Wave, Electronic music

    open report item
  27. 27
    Up 188
    Down 222

    Thrash metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    open report item
  28. 28
    Up 199
    Down 258

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Americana, Blues-rock, Heartland rock

    open report item
  29. 29
    Up 151
    Down 196

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Pop music, Rock music, Folk rock

    open report item
  30. 30
    Up 160
    Down 155

    Blues-rock, Boogie rock, Rock music

    open report item
  31. 31
    Up 232
    Down 136

    ranked low on reranks Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music

    open report item
  32. 32
    Up 252
    Down 197

    ranked low on reranks Adult contemporary music, New Wave, Pop music

    open report item
  33. 33
    Up 197
    Down 169

    Synthpop, New Wave, Dance-pop

    open report item
  34. 34
    Up 137
    Down 172

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Hip hop music, Pop punk, Alternative hip hop

    open report item
  35. 35
    Up 199
    Down 180

    Hip hop music, Pop punk, New Wave

    open report item
  36. 36
    Up 126
    Down 102

    New Wave, Pop music, Rock music

    open report item
  37. 37
    Up 160
    Down 168

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Blues-rock, New Wave, Classic rock

    open report item
  38. 38
    Up 158
    Down 122

    Doo-wop, Blues-rock, Blue-eyed soul

    open report item
  39. 39
    Up 127
    Down 111

    New Wave, Rock music, Alternative rock

    open report item
  40. 40
    Up 134
    Down 100

    Blue-eyed soul, New Wave, Rock music

    open report item
  41. 41
    Up 159
    Down 122

    New Wave, Rock music, Dance-rock

    open report item
  42. 42
    Up 168
    Down 190

    often listed & ranked high on reranks Motown Sound, Psychedelic soul, Pop music

    open report item
  43. 43
    Up 135
    Down 59

    ranked low on reranks Rock music, Jazz fusion, Pop rock

    open report item
  44. 44
    Up 194
    Down 116

    ranked low on reranks Adult album alternative, Synthpop, New Wave

    open report item
  45. 45
    Up 129
    Down 105

    Glam punk, Rock and roll, Hard rock

    open report item
  46. 46
    Up 137
    Down 118

    Hip hop music, Pop punk, New Wave

    open report item
  47. 47
    Up 116
    Down 78

    Rock music, Heavy metal, Pop rock

    open report item
  48. 48
    Up 138
    Down 102

    New Wave, Pop music, Rock music

    open report item
  49. 49
    Up 128
    Down 133

    often listed & ranked high on reranks New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Heavy metal, Hard rock

    open report item
  50. 50
    Up 118
    Down 90

    Pop music, Rock music, Piano rock

    open report item
  51. 256 +

    Something missing? Add it!

Is this list missing something?
RANKERS WHO ADDED ITEMS

items 1 - 50 of 255

think you can do better?

Rerank This List
why?

got a blog or website?

embed this list
why?

viewers of this list also saw

more popular lists