The Greatest Musical Artists of the '80s Bands/Musicians
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21  reranks 23,979 votes 1,085 voters 68,532 views by  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
    • Age
    • Region
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</> Rerank List
Score
  1. 1
    Up 369
    Down 189

    the people's #1 &most listed
    Michael Jackson

    Motown Sound, Rock music, Electronic music More
    100
  2. 2
    Up 260
    Down 167
    Pop music, Rock music, Heavy metal More
    94
  3. 3
    Up 207
    Down 182
    Hip hop music, Synthpop, New Wave More
    85
  4. 4
    Up 186
    Down 166
    New Wave, 2 Tone, Ska punk More
    84
  5. 5
    Up 197
    Down 165
    Pop music, Rock music, Electronic music More
    82
  6. 6
    Up 191
    Down 183
    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music More
    81
  7. 7
    Up 172
    Down 167
    Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music More
    80
  8. 8
    Up 172
    Down 145
    Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal More
    76
  9. 9
    Up 184
    Down 181
    Rock music, Alternative rock, Punk rock More
    76
  10. 10
    Up 146
    Down 146
    Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music More
    76
  11. 11
    Up 163
    Down 144
    Blues-rock, Boogie rock, Rock music More
    73
  12. 12
    Up 148
    Down 149
    Americana, Blues-rock, Heartland rock More
    71
  13. 13
    Up 148
    Down 139
    Rock music, Psychedelic pop, Electronic music More
    70
  14. 14
    Up 144
    Down 140
    New Wave, Gothic rock, Rock music More
    70
  15. 15
    Up 128
    Down 122
    Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal More
    70
  16. 16
    Up 148
    Down 147
    Synthpop, New Wave, Electronic music More
    70
  17. 17
    Up 137
    Down 132
    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music More
    70
  18. 18
    Up 130
    Down 148
    Pop music, Dance-pop, Contemporary R&B More
    69
  19. 19
    Up 121
    Down 120
    Blues-rock, New Wave, Classic rock More
    69
  20. 20
    Up 135
    Down 136
    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music More
    68
  21. 21
    Up 129
    Down 137
    Motown Sound, Psychedelic soul, Pop music More
    68
  22. 22
    Up 106
    Down 120
    Pop music, Rock music, Folk rock More
    68
  23. 23
    Up 135
    Down 123
    Rock music, Dance-pop, Rhythm and blues More
    68
  24. 24
    Up 109
    Down 109
    Blue-eyed soul, Synthpop, New Wave More
    68
  25. 25
    Up 141
    Down 132
    Jangle pop, Alternative rock, College rock More
    67
  26. 26
    Up 139
    Down 152
    Thrash metal, Rock music, Heavy metal More
    67
  27. 27
    Up 117
    Down 109
    Hip hop music, Pop punk, New Wave More
    67
  28. 28
    Up 115
    Down 105
    New Wave, Rock music, Dance-rock More
    67
  29. 29
    Up 122
    Down 115
    Celtic rock, Blues-rock, Rock music More
    67
  30. 30
    Up 116
    Down 109
    Blues-rock, Boogie rock, Rock music More
    66
  31. 31
    Up 100
    Down 119

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Beastie Boys

    Hip hop music, Pop punk, Alternative hip hop More
    66
  32. 32
    Up 89
    Down 85
    New Wave, Rock music, Punk funk More
    65
  33. 33
    Up 111
    Down 109
    Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music More
    65
  34. 34
    Up 125
    Down 99
    Adult contemporary music, New Wave, Pop music More
    65
  35. 35
    Up 132
    Down 106
    Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music More
    64
  36. 36
    Up 90
    Down 75
    New Wave, Pop music, Rock music More
    64
  37. 37
    Up 121
    Down 97
    New Wave, Rock music, Dance-rock More
    63
  38. 38
    Up 96
    Down 78
    Blue-eyed soul, New Wave, Rock music More
    63
  39. 39
    Up 146
    Down 95

    ranked low on reranks
    A-ha

    Adult album alternative, Synthpop, New Wave More
    62
  40. 40
    Up 93
    Down 90
    New Wave, Rock music, Alternative rock More
    62
  41. 41
    Up 90
    Down 86
    Glam punk, Rock and roll, Hard rock More
    62
  42. 42
    Up 98
    Down 96
    New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Heavy metal, Hard rock More
    62
  43. 43
    Up 82
    Down 79
    Synthpop, New Wave, Dance-pop More
    61
  44. 44
    Up 100
    Down 92
    Doo-wop, Blues-rock, Blue-eyed soul More
    61
  45. 45
    Up 106
    Down 99
    Hip hop music, Pop punk, New Wave More
    60
  46. 46
    Up 121
    Down 91

    ranked low on reranks
    Phil Collins

    Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music More
    60
  47. 47
    Up 79
    Down 59
    Jangle pop, Girl group, New Wave More
    60
  48. 48
    Up 104
    Down 87
    New Wave, Pop music, Rock music More
    60
  49. 49
    Up 74
    Down 56
    Rock music, Heavy metal, Pop rock More
    59
  50. 50
    Up 98
    Down 81
    Doom metal, Glam metal, Blues-rock More
    59
  51. 272 +

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