We Got Love for You if You Performed in the 80s!
The 1980s were a fascinating era in music history. R&B and hip-hop influences blended with hard rock, punk, and the British Invasion to create a genuinely varied sound that dominated the airwaves. In addition, the introduction of MTV drove many musicians to the popularity they could not have achieved with voice alone. Colorful, dynamic, and long-lasting, the 1980s were a terrific decade for music lovers. Continue reading to learn about some of the most prominent singers and bands of the 1980s.
Prince, a wonderfully enigmatic and bold funk-pop pioneer, easily deserves to be included on our list of the finest 80s musicians. With such prodigious work over the decade, it should be no surprise. And it’s also no surprise that many choose to dress up as the icon when they host an 80s themed night! The best Prince songs demonstrated him to be a genre-hopping force of nature, from the futurist synth-pop of 1999 to the panoramic power ballad Purple Rain, the psychedelia-tinged Raspberry Beret, and the daring political declaration Sign O’ The Times.
The singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist published nine albums in ten years and amassed an incredible 26 US successes – and that’s not counting songs he composed, but others brought to the charts.
Far from being the finest singer or songwriter, Madonna epitomized control by assembling the right team to generate an uninterrupted run of hit singles. In addition, Madonna always looked great; her live shows defined what was possible in stadium pop’s early days. Madonna may have invented Girl Power before the Spice Girls. Still, Madonna wasn’t so narrow-minded: hers was simply Power.
3. Iron Maiden
Iron Maiden was the defining metal group of the 1980s. Metallica may have been a bit bigger and had more record sales, but I believe Iron Maiden was at the top of the ladder; they released twice as many albums as Metallica in the 1980s, and all of them were good. This band took metal and gave it style, going in a different way than the thrashers or power metal folks. Iron Maiden’s great bass lines, high-range vocals, and precise guitar solos helped them become masters of their genre.
4. Motley Crue
Motley Crue is the poster child for the 1980s if there ever was one. The Motley Crue, billed as the “World’s Most Notorious Rock Band,” was founded in Los Angeles in 1981. Members Nikki Sixx, Tommy Lee, Mick Mars, and Vince Neil immediately built a name in the Los Angeles metal club scene, leading to a deal with Elektra Records in 1982. The band’s success coincided with MTV’s burgeoning popularity, with many songs receiving regular rotation on the music channel.
5. Tina Turner
The charismatic “Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll” must be included. Tina Turner’s career spans over 50 years, with the 1980s being her most successful decade. She is a multiple Grammy winner and one of the best-selling performers of her era. Tina won hearts worldwide with her smash record “Private Dancer,” which featured her lovely throaty vocals, stunning legs, and outspoken personality.
Bananarama, a British-born band, was formed in 1980 by three ladies who had known each other their entire lives. They scored several major hits, including It Ain’t What You Do and Really Saying Something, and held the Guinness World Record for the most chart entries by an all-female group. Between 1982 and 2009, the group had 30 singles chart in the top 50 in the United Kingdom.
Look at any 80s music star, and you’ll notice that these musicians were unique. The best 80s tunes buzzed with a frantic, brilliant energy that fits perfectly with a decade when hair was sticking up to the skies and shoulder pads were everywhere. Simply put, everything appeared larger in the 1980s. The biggest-selling musicians of the decade were in sync with the times. As our list of the top 80s stars demonstrates, these shining names achieved equally astronomical fame and money.