List of the Best 80s Dance Music

Written by heather seiden
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The '80s was a fun decade marked by big hair, shoulder pads, colourful fashion, excesses and music that spanned many genres. Punk, new wave, pop, rock and roll and even disco all seemed to mesh together to create memorable songs. There are many great dance tunes from the 80s, and people have different favourites from the period. But there are a few songs that are often considered classic 80s dance music.

Michael Jackson's Thriller

The album "Thriller" by Michael Jackson has sold more than 30 million copies, according to an article on Many songs from Thriller have become classic 80s dance songs, including "Billie Jean," "Beat It," "Thriller" and "PYT (Pretty Young Thing)."

The videos for these songs have contributed to making them even more memorable. When the video for "Billie Jean" came out, many people tried to mimic Jackson's style of dance. Also, the video for "Thriller" is still considered one of the greatest videos of all time.


Madonna burst on the music scene in the early 80s and had many hits during the decade that have become classic dance tunes. From her album called "Madonna," the songs "Holiday," "Borderline" and "Lucky Star" were mainstays of dance clubs. Her next album, "Like a Virgin," generated the dance hits "Like a Virgin," "Material Girl," "Into the Groove" and "Dress You Up." Madonna finished the decade with the album "Like a Prayer" with the hits "Express Yourself" and "Like a Prayer."

One-Hit Wonders

There were many artists in the 80s that had one really popular hit, and these songs remain popular. These songs include "Relax(Don't Do It)" by Frankie Goes to Hollywood, "Never Gonna Give You Up" by Rick Astley, "Safety Dance" by Men Without Hats, "Super Freak" by Rick James, "Electric Avenue" by Eddy Grant, "Tainted Love" by Soft Cell, "It Takes Two" by Rob Base and DJ EZ Rock, "Funky Town" by Lipps Inc. and "Bust a Move" by Young MC.

These artists had other minor hits, but these songs were their most successful and are often still played today in dance clubs.

More 80s Songs

Other artists had multiple hits in the 80s, and some of these have since become dance classics. For example, Prince, as part of Prince and the Revolution, had big hits with the songs "1999" and "Let's Go Crazy." Duran Duran scored big with the songs "Hungry Like the Wolf" and "Rio." The band "Dead or Alive" had a few hits, the biggest among them being "You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)." The girl group Bananarama hit the charts with the songs "Venus" and "Cruel Summer."

There are several compilation audio CDs that feature various 80s dance hits. Purchasing one of these is a good way to get a taste of the best 80s dance music.

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