I have often wondered why 80′s music hits are so timeless for me. Perhaps it is because it takes me back to my childhood when I first developed my passion for music, and perhaps it is just that the music of the 1980′s was really that good.
The 80′s are a rock n roll decade. Big hair and rock music blaring loud from the radio!
As a child of the 1980′s, I grew up loving such musical groups and performers as INXS, Robert Palmer and U2, and I still find myself listening to a lot of their songs. That got me to wondering the other day why 80′s music hits are so timeless. It is not just that way for me or people from my generation, either.
One of my favorite 80′s music hits was “Need You Tonight” by INXS. I was just a little kid and remember listening to it over and over again. I thought it had the coolest music of any song that I had ever heard. Even to this day, when I hear it on the radio, I have to listen to it and sing along with all of the lyrics.
When most people think of the 80s they do not have very fond memories of the music that was on the air at the time. We tend to think of the 70s as the “disco” era and the 60s as the time when rock music developed. The 60s were the days of the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, the Who, and a host of other great bands that we now think of as the seminal groups in rock history. But the 80s were a different story and do not get the respect that many experts think it should.
I have a number of younger cousins who are also great music fans, and they love the music of the 1980′s, even though they were not even born yet. I’ll ask them why they like it, and they say that the music is cool, and in many instances, meaningful.
Whatever the reason, 80′s music hits still stand out to me as some of the best music ever produced and I feel fortunate to have come up during that decade in music.
80s music hits included great bands like Tears for Fears and their fantastic international number one hit “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” and “Shout”. Who can forget Simple Minds and “Don’t You Forget About Me”? There were plenty of great groups making 80s music hits that just don’t get the credit they deserve.
There were modern pop groups too like Pet Shop Boys and their huge 80s music hit “East End Boys and West End Girls” or the digital Depeche Mode with “Strange Love”, “Policy of Truth”, “Personal Jesus” and “Route 66”. Other cult bands with truly great musicians sprang up like The Cure and their hit “Just Like Heaven”.
Robert Palmer was another great artist of the 1980′s whose song “Addicted to Love” was my brother’s favorite. We would be in our room hanging out, and he would play that song over and over again, and the truth of the matter is that I really didn’t mind. I loved it probably as much as he did.
The 80s was also the time of bands such as the Psychedelic Furs and their big 80s music hit “Pretty in Pink” from the movie of the same name. There was also R.E.M. and their song “Losing My Religion” which was in many ways responsible for the proliferation of 90s style Modern Rock.
80s music hits were not limited to Pop music, but were also being created by bonafide rock bands such as Duran Duran with their hit “Rio” and also Bon Jovi with what many consider one of the best of the 80s music hits “Livin’ On A Prayer”. And who will ever forget Guns n’ Roses with “Sweet Child of Mine” which sounds as fresh today as it was back then.
I also had my first big crush in the 1980′s, and that was on the pop singer Debbie Gibson. When I first laid eyes on her, I fell deeply in love, and still find myself blushing a little when I see pictures of her today.
She had a couple of 80′s music hits, such as “Shake Your Love” and “Only in My Dreams.” I got a tape of hers for my birthday one year, and needless to say, it was my favorite present.
The 80s were also the time of Michael Jackson, Prince, and Madonna, three giants of the industry who continued to churn out hit after hit for many years. Prince’s “Purple Rain” was just the right blend of rock and soul and the big hit from the album was “Let’s Go Crazy”. U2 began in the 80s and their songs “With or Without You” and “Pride (In the Name of Love) from their giant album The Joshua Tree began a long string of massive 80s music hits for them.
Whimsical music was also the order of the day and groups like Wham and their hit “Careless Whispers” topped the charts. A-Ha, a pop group from Sweden also rocked on with their big hit “Take on Me”.
As an American of Irish ancestry and a music lover as well, one of my favorite rock groups of all time is U2, and the 1980′s was when I was first introduced to them. The group had a lot of 80′s music hits, as that was the decade of the album “The Joshua Tree.” That particular album featured such songs as “Where the Streets Have No Name,” “With or Without You” and “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For.”
I remember playing that cassette so much that it actually wore the tape out completely. I eventually bought it on CD, and I’ll pop it in from time to time just to sort of take me back to my youth.
There were some extremely dark songs as well like the moody “Voices Carry” by Til Tuesday, a one hit wonder. The Fixx added their fiery brand of rock with “Red Skies at Night”.
So you can see that with just these few examples, there were many unsung 80s music hits that never received the credit they deserved.