singers The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s  

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List Rules Pop stars, artists, and groups popular during the 1980s

The 1980s was a huge decade in terms of breaking pop stars. '80s artists benefited from the rising popularity of cable television. MTV was a cultural phenomenon that became a kingmaker in terms of helping create larger than life '80s pop stars. Singers like Michael Jackson, Prince, and Madonna, largely considered three of the biggest '80s pop stars, were greatly impacted by these new outlets. Their iconic music videos revolutionized the way people consumed music.

In a sense, the '80s turned run of the mill musicians into major pop stars. Artists like Billy Ocean, Huey Lewis & The News, Rick Springfield, and Richard Marx all had brushes with fame during this decade. While the merits of their respective widespread fame and acclaim can be debated, no one can doubt or diminish their achievements as some of the biggest stars of the 1980s and most widely known and remembered '80s groups. Some of the decade's biggest pop artists and pop artists have endured to the present day. Bon Jovi, Journey, and the late Whitney Houston are examples of '80s singers whose music was able to endure and are considered classics from that time period.

Here is your chance to pick the best 1980s pop stars. This Ultimate List will determine who was the greatest pop star of the decade, and it's up to you decide who takes the honor.
list ordered by

1
4,642 3,475
Madonna is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
jsnungaray added Madonna Like a Virgin, Like a Prayer, Music

The Greatest Male Pop Singers of All Time The Druggiest Rock Stars of All Time

2
2,740 2,596
Queen is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
hbg1968 added Queen A Night at the Opera, Queen, Innuendo

3
5,225 4,121
Michael Jackson is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Michael Jackson Thriller, Bad, Off the Wall

4
4,502 3,190
George Michael is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
George Michael Faith, Listen Without Prejudice, Volume 1

5
3,221 3,665
Prince is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Prince Purple Rain, Sign 'O' the Times, 1999

6
3,389 2,787
Whitney Houston is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Whitney Houston The Bodyguard: Original Soundtrack Album, Whitney Houston, My Love Is Your Love

7
2,596 2,840
Ranker Video
Cyndi Lauper She's So Unusual, True Colors, Girls Just Want to Have Fun

8
2,324 1,447
WHAM! is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
dan808 added WHAM! Make It Big, The Best of Wham!: If You Were There..., The Final

9
1,586 2,381
Phil Collins is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
looksharp added Phil Collins Face Value, Both Sides, No Jacket Required

10
1,836 2,020
Eurythmics is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Eurythmics Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This), Touch, Be Yourself Tonight

11
873 1,143
Dire Straits is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Dire Straits Brothers in Arms, Dire Straits, Making Movies

12
867 1,189
Annie Lennox is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
ElizabethKistner added Annie Lennox Diva, Why, Songs of Mass Destruction

13
734 732
AC/DC is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Donald Luttman added AC/DC Back in Black, Highway to Hell, Let There Be Rock

14
1,811 2,085
Tina Turner is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Tina Turner Private Dancer, What's Love Got to Do With It, Simply the Best

15
718 849
Pink Floyd is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Crabbs added Pink Floyd The Wall, The Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here

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16
1,032 1,139
Bryan Adams is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Bryan Adams Reckless, Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron, 11

17
948 1,296
Huey Lewis & the News is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Huey Lewis & the News Sports, Fore!, Picture This

18
496 447
Bee Gees is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Danny Marks added Bee Gees Saturday Night Fever, Main Course, Spirits Having Flown

19
2,082 2,267
David Bowie is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
hbg1968 added David Bowie The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, Hunky Dory, Diamond Dogs

20
1,539 1,900
The Police is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
The Police Synchronicity, Ghost in the Machine, Zenyattà Mondatta

21
377 387
Scorpions is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Donald Luttman added Scorpions Blackout, Love at First Sting, Animal Magnetism

22
1,054 1,487
Bruce Springsteen is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Bruce Springsteen Born to Run, Born in the U.S.A., The Rising

23
1,805 2,341
Duran Duran is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Duran Duran Rio, Come Undone, Greatest

24
1,549 1,503
Blondie is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Coolza added Blondie Parallel Lines, Heart of Glass, Blondie

25
467 462
Guns N' Roses is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
IanHarvey added Guns N' Roses Appetite for Destruction, G N' R Lies, Use Your Illusion I

26
1,380 1,635
Bon Jovi is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Bon Jovi Slippery When Wet, New Jersey, Cross Road

27
217 95
Aerosmith is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Donald Luttman added Aerosmith Toys in the Attic, Pump, Permanent Vacation

28
421 359
Randy Savage is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Heracle added Randy Savage Be a Man, Be a Man... Ooh Yeah

29
1,072 1,257
Lionel Richie is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Lionel Richie Can't Slow Down, Tuskegee, Coming Home

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30
1,115 1,081
Fleetwood Mac is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Coolza added Fleetwood Mac Rumours, Fleetwood Mac, Tango in the Night

31
1,473 1,655
Tears for Fears is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
ElizabethKistner added Tears for Fears Songs From the Big Chair, The Hurting, Everybody Wants to Rule the World

32
1,346 1,340
Journey is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Journey Escape, Frontiers, Evolution

33
1,220 1,722
Elton John is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Elton John Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, Disney's Sing-Along: The Lion King, Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy

34
550 392
Paul Simon is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
looksharp added Paul Simon Graceland, Still Crazy After All These Years, So Beautiful or So What

35
1,727 1,945
Olivia Newton-John is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Olivia Newton-John Xanadu, Grease, The Christmas Collection

36
554 822
Bonnie Tyler is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
ElizabethKistner added Bonnie Tyler Total Eclipse of the Heart, Heart Strings, It's a Heartache

37
1,144 1,332
Billy Joel is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Billy Joel The Stranger, Piano Man, 52nd Street

38
1,064 1,333
Stevie Wonder is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Stevie Wonder Songs in the Key of Life, Innervisions, Talking Book

39
1,172 1,348
U2 is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
U2 The Joshua Tree, War, Achtung Baby

40
917 1,065
Depeche Mode is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
KevinBeyon added Depeche Mode Violator, Songs of Faith and Devotion, Music for the Masses

41
1,448 1,590
Culture Club is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Culture Club Do You Really Want to Hurt Me, Culture Club, Colour by Numbers

42
1,344 1,358
Donna Summer is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
frantix16 added Donna Summer Bad Girls, Christmas Spirit, The Summer Collection: Greatest Hits

43
886 1,153
Hall & Oates is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Hall & Oates H2O, Maneater, Abandoned Luncheonette

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44
1,269 1,472
A-ha is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
sandy01 added A-ha Hunting High and Low, Minor Earth | Major Sky, Take On Me

45
349 262
ABBA is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
ColinBoddy added ABBA Fernando, Arrival, Thank You for the Music

46
829 1,060
Pat Benatar is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Pat Benatar Crimes of Passion, Greatest Hits, Best Shots

47
784 949
Van Halen is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
dan808 added Van Halen Van Halen, 1984, Diver Down

48
865 996
Billy Idol is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Billy Idol Rebel Yell, Happy Holidays, Idol Songs: 11 of the Best

49
802 915
Toto is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
hbg1968 added Toto Toto IV, Legend: The Best of Toto, Turn Back

50
816 1,071
Sting is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s
Sting ...Nothing Like the Sun, Ten Summoner's Tales, Mercury Falling