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TopPicks Index

Top 10 Bruce Springsteen Songs of the '80s, Part 1 - Hits, Singles & Familiar Tracks
Bruce Springsteen was an important and consistent hitmaker of the '80s, especially upon the release of his intensely popular classic album from 1984, [i]Born in the USA[/i]. Here's a look at the singer-songwriter's best tunes that made a mark on the '80s pop charts.

Top 6 Spinal Tap Songs of the '80s
As the top parody rock band of the '80s, Spinal Tap provided both commentary on contemporary music and functioned as a vital artist in its own right. Here's a look at the "fictional" band's best and most representative hard rock songs.

Top 10 Hard Rock Songs of the '80s
Hard rock during the '80s was a lucrative style of music that brimmed with multitudes of bands representing various genres. Therefore, separating out the best songs from such a large pool of possibility is quite the challenging enterprise. Here's a look at 10 tracks that stand out as would-be, should-be or set-in-stone classics from this fruitful era of hard rock.

Top 7 ZZ Top Songs of the '80s
As one of the decade's most iconic bands in terms of visual image and sound, Texas blues-rock legends ZZ Top made the transition to full-tilt mainstream pop/rock with flair, conviction, and, most importantly, some pretty solid songs.

Top 8 Colorfully Named Artists of the '80s
Here's a look at a number of '80s bands that offered vibrant touches through their music as well as the splashes of color in their names.

Top 10 Singles of the '80s
The greatest singles of any era possess the power to change the world in three minutes, or failing that, they at least share the ability to leave their stamp on a musical landscape already filled nearly to capacity. And while chart performance, radio airplay and longevity are all important criteria to choose the best of the best, these essential '80s tunes announce themselves as vital through sheer force of gravity. These songs are simply impossible to ignore in the context of '80s music.

Top 7 Poison Songs of the '80s
One of hair metal's most popular and vilified bands of the '80s, Poison made some of the era's most defining music, for better or for worse depending on your perspective.

Top 10 Albums of 1982
Here's a look at 10 of the finest album releases that defined 1982, a year still driven by new wave but exhibiting a variety of rock and pop styles.

Top 6 Men at Work Songs of the '80s
Despite an unfortunately brief three-year run on the pop music landscape, the Australian former bar band Men at Work made an indelible mark on '80s music. And unlike many of its contemporaries, the group did so by focusing squarely on making great, eclectic rock music like these fine tunes.

Top 6 Kool & the Gang Songs of the '80s
Here's my take on the best tracks from the most commercially successful years of the classic funk/soul band Kool & the Gang. Although the music certainly took on a strong pop flavor as the decade wore on, the band pumped out a consistent string of high-quality hits.

Top 7 Chicago Songs of the '80s
Here's a look at the cream of the crop from Chicago's distinctive if somewhat disappointing '80s phase, a list of songs far shorter than the Billboard charts back then might have suggested.

Top 10 Songs of 1989
Here's a musical look at the last calendar year of the '80s, a time during which much pop music was already in the process of saying goodbye to the previous decade.

Top 7 Bob Seger Songs of the '80s
Heartland rocker Bob Seger delivered some of the '80s finest, quietly moving mainstream rock and did so with a greater consistency than almost any of his peers. Despite only three studio albums, his impact on the decade's musical landscape was significant enough to put him on the short list of important rock artists for both the '70s and '80s. Here are a few reasons why.

Top 6 Go-Go's Songs of the '80s
The Go-Go's made quite a splash as one of rock's first entirely self-reliant, highly successful rock bands. In the process, the band released an impressive variety of quality music over three studio albums. Here's a look at the group's best.

Top 10 Albums of 1981
Here's a look at some of 1981's finest full-length releases, with an eye toward capturing the great variety of music released that year in the ever-changing pop/rock landscape.

Top 6 Survivor Songs of the '80s
The American melodic power rock band Survivor was always more of a singles act than a producer of consistent albums, but the group's best songs truly capture a moment in time during the early '80s. Stop in here for a look at the group's essential tracks, all celebrations of excessive romantic bombast.

Top 9 Genesis Songs of the '80s
Few bands have displayed a capacity for reinvention as dramatic or successful as Genesis, a band that embraced weirdness under the direction of Peter Gabriel but pure pop melodicism when drummer Phil Collins took the helm. Here's a look at some of that band's finest tunes in the latter category, pop confections that house far more musical substance than they're ever given credit for.

Top 6 Bangles Songs of the '80s
All-female '80s rockers the Bangles have always been most well-known for music its members contributed the least, but the truth of this fine band's legacy can be gleaned from its highly original '60s-tinged, guitar-based pop sound. Here's a take on some of the band's best performances, if not its biggest hits, all songs that emphasize the group's strengths as a unit thriving on self-produced synergy.

Top 8 Phil Collins Songs of the '80s
Pop-oriented Genesis frontman Phil Collins hasn't always received a lot of respect as a rock artist, but his solo work during the '80s provides no shortage of evidence that he released plenty of high-quality music as he made the transition from rock to full-fledged pop throughout the decade. Here are some of his finest tunes from that era, all solid compositions and performances with considerable merit.

Top 10 Songs of 1988
Here's a look at 10 of the most striking, singular tunes from 1988, a year dominated by some pretty lame pop hits and hair metal posturing but somehow still rich with delightful musical surprises.

Top 10 Albums of 1980
Here’s a look at 10 of the finest and most influential albums that made their most notable impact during the calendar year of 1980.

Top 10 Most Tragic & Untimely Deaths of '80s Musical Artists Since 1990
Since the end of the '80s nearly two decades ago, many of its musical artists have aged and matured in typical ways, either in or out of the business. Some, of course, dealt with that constant evolution better than others, while another group was silenced by sudden, accidental deaths.

Top 10 Most Tragic & Untimely Musician Deaths of the '80s
The '80s witnessed a number of tragic deaths involving both contemporary artists and musicians who had become legendary during previous decades. Though it’s impossible to do justice to the many left off of this list that deserve commemoration, here’s a sampling of some of the decade’s most heartrending premature deaths of pop music artists.

Top 10 Songs of 1985
Aside from being right in the middle of the '80s chronologically, 1985 was undoubtedly a central year in the decade’s musical offerings. Many of the most popular and highest-quality tunes this year stood as big, sweeping statements of both style and substance. More than anything else, the top songs of 1985 continue to generate large waves of nostalgia and good memories whenever they’re heard still today.

Top 7 '80s Artists Known for Accessorizing
At least on the surface, which is often all that matters, the '80s were more about fashion than music, as the images projected by artists sometimes lasted longer than the music they put on record. Here’s a look at some of the most iconic artists of the decade from a style perspective. Accessories always included.

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