Hits of the ’80s – Horrible and Great

Here is a wrap-up of the Horrible and Great hits of the ’80s. I threw all the songs from my previous lists of each year, and picked my least favorite and favorite songs of the decade.
So, this is basically a Greatest Hits compilation of the Hits – Horrible and Great series.

The Horrible Hits came quite easy to me, and fell right into place. My favorites were a little tougher. They are always rotating in and out. Since I love so much ’80s music, it is difficult leaving some songs off the list.
Well, without further adieu:


10. If This Is It – Huey Lewis and The News

Stick with the up-tempo songs, Huey! I loved every song on the Sports album – except for this one. It’s slow, boring, and there’s no feeling in it.

9. Harden My Heart – Quarterflash

This is one of the most overplayed ’80s songs out there. I’ve heard this song more in the past couple of years than I did during the entire ’80s decade! And it’s not even on my iPod! This may not have made the list if it were not so overplayed. This song is a little to slow for me, but not slow enough to be a good ballad. I can’t change the station fast enough when it comes on the radio.

8. Two Hearts – Phil Collins

I love Phil Collins, but this was probably the most overplayed among his overplayed songs.

7. Smooth Operator – Sade

The Stuck in the 80s guys were told to keep this song off their Horrible list. It did sound like they wanted it on there though. So, I will place it on my list yet again. Is this even a song? It is more like slow torture! Slow, slow torture.

6. True – Spandau Ballet

Ah, Ah-Ah-ah, AAAAAAARRRGGGHHHH!!! I can’t stomach this song. It is too boring, and it high on some kind of wuss factor. I’ll have to admit that it was funny seeing Steve Buscemi singing this song at the end of The Wedding Singer:

Unfortunately, since the song was included in the movie, it was also included on the movie’s soundtrack. Why didn’t they leave this song off, and put on “Do You Believe In Love”?

5. Stand – R.E.M.

This song is like a whiny “Hokey Pokey”. The only song I liked by R.E.M. was “What’s the Frequency, Kenneth?”, and then they disappeared.

4. Red Red Wine – UB40

Neil Diamond was a great songwriter. But, this was not one of his better songs, that’s for sure! I don’t know why it was remade, and I don’t understand why this was a hit. This is another song that comes on, and I can’t change the station fast enough.

3. Mandolin Rain – Bruce Hornsby and the Range

Bruce Hornsby has a unique sound on his piano. Unfortunately, every song I’ve heard by him sounds exactly the same. And they are all horrible. I can’t turn this song off fast enough as soon as I hear it.

2. The Girl Is Mine – Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney

Two of the greatest music artists of all time took the biggest dump on the biggest album of all time! Uggh, this song makes me want to rip my ears off and rip all the skin off my face! The “doggon” song bites the big one! Especially when they start yapping in the song. This song should be taken off of all copies of Thriller, and be replaced by “Say, Say, Say”.

1. Don’t Worry, Be Happy – Bobby McFerrin

How can I be happy when this crap comes on the radio!? Don’t tell me what to do, Bobby McFerrin! I was perfectly happy until this song came on and annoyed the crap out of me. Ooooooo! There’s no instruments. He makes all the sound effects with his mouth! Impressive! If I want that, I don’t have to subject myself to this dreck. I’ll just put on some Police Academy to watch Michael Winslow.


10. Lost In Your Eyes – Debbie Gibson

My favorite Debbie Gibson song. Even people who weren’t into the teen music, at the time, liked this song. It is still great today.

9. Hard Habit to Break – Chicago

I still love this Chicago ballad! This was in the middle of their comeback during the David Foster years. I got sick of “You’re the Inspiration”, but I never got sick of this song. Unfortunately, the band became known more for their ballads. Their rock songs are just as good. But, “Hard Habit to Break” is one of my all time favorite Chicago songs.

8. Down Under – Men At Work

This song was a breakthrough for Men At Work, and basically introduced the U.S. to Australia and vegemite sandwiches. This is a fun song, and Colin Haye has a great unique voice. The band had a great string of hits. Will they get back together already?!

7. Hungry Like the Wolf – Duran Duran

This song got a lot of people into Duran Duran. The exposure on MTV didn’t hurt either. I liked it when it came out because the video reminded me of Raiders of the Lost Ark. But, even without the video, the song itself is really good.

6. Like a Prayer – Madonna

This was Madonna at the peak of her career. This is my favorite song by her.

5. Here I Go Again – Whitesnake

This is a great song without the video. But, much like “At This Moment” is linked with Family Ties, “Here I Go Again” will forever be linked with the video and Tawny Kitaen. How many of us guys wished that we were that car?!? 24 years later I still love this song. It stands the test of time for me.

4. Pour Some Sugar On Me – Def Leppard

A perfect rock anthem. This is a fun song, that really rocks, and is still popular today. With all the great smash hits that Def Leppard has, this is one of the best.

3. The Living Years – Mike and the Mechanics

A really emotional song that packs quite a punch. Paul Carrack sounds great. The music and message are just awesome.

2. Don’t You (Forget About Me) – Simple Minds

The ultimate ’80s song from the ultimate ’80s movie. You can’t think of one without the other. It even has staying power as this song is played while the losing American Idols are being booted. This song does get played alot, but somehow I cannot get sick of it.

1. Don’t Stop Believin’, Journey

“Don’t Stop Believin'” is one of my all time favorite songs, even after all these years. Everybody still gets into this song. And a new generation has even found it, as it became extremely popular from the television show Glee. Don’t Stop Believin’ this song will live on forever.

6 thoughts on “Hits of the ’80s – Horrible and Great”

  1. Your #1 Fave has unfortunately become such an overplayed/overused anthem that it’s close to making my skin crawl. I remember suggesting Smooth Operator for a Valentine’s Day playlist submitted to Steve of Stuck in the ;80s and I thought he was going to have me beheaded. It is possibly one of Sade’s worst songs ever. His trusty sidekick Sean loathes TRUE by Spandau Ballet. If he ever took anyone hostage or was captured by enemy forces, playing that would be the way to torture him.


    1. I Love your name! I do get sick of songs pretty easily when they get played over and over, but I still love “Don’t Stop Believin'”. That Sade song is horrible, but she does have a godd voice, and some of her other songs are better. And yeah, Sean and I have the same exact feeling about “True” Whenever Spearsy starts playing it, I start freaking out the same way, and at the same time that Sean does.

      Thanks so much for your feedback. I really appreciate it!


  2. I kinda like most of your Horrible Hits. Not enough to put them in my Top Ten, though. You nailed it with Quarterflash, REM and UB40, though.

    My Horribles:
    10. Take the Long Way Home – Supertramp
    9. What I Am – Edie Brickell and The New Bohemians
    8. Harden My Heart – Quarterflash
    7. Life In A Northern Town – Dream Academy
    6. Fight For Your Right (To Party) – Beastie Boys
    5. Rumors – Timex Social Club
    4. Stand – R.E.M.
    3. Red Red Wine – UB40
    2. Pass The Dutchie – Musical Youth
    1. Another Brick in the Wall – Pink Floyd

    My Top Ten:
    10. Celebration – Kool and the Gang
    9. Easy Lover – Philip Bailey and Phil Collins
    8. Careless Whisper – Wham!
    7. Against All Odds – Phil Collins
    6. Heart To Heart – Kenny Loggins
    5. Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic – The Police
    4. Hard Habit To Break – Chicago
    3. Rio – Duran Duran
    2. Lessons In Love – Level 42
    1. I Can’t Go For That – Hall and Oates

    I’ve corrected my personal list to make Rio my #1 song for 1983. For some reason, that Music Outfitters site left them off the Top 100. That has to be a mistake, right?

    Your Top Ten was very solid. Wasn’t too crazy about Like A Prayer, but the others that didn’t make my list were worthy of Honorable Mention.
    Guess this really puts a wrap on the lists now, huh? Sure going to miss them.


    1. You have great lists too, Jim! I agree with all your horrible songs. The only one I like a little is “Life in a Northern Town”. But, like I said in the other article, I prefer Sugarland’s version. And I love all your top 10 songs, except for “Careless Whisper”. “Heart to Heart” is one of Kenny Loggins’ most underrated songs.
      I will keep coming up with ideas. Next up…One-Hit wonders. But, I’m just going to go into details for one song a day. But, maybe after I complete each year, I’ll compile a top-ten list for that year.

      In the meantime, if you’d like, you can do a write-up on Level 42, and email it to me at returntothe80s@gmail.com and/or returntothe80s@yahoo.com. And I can publish it, and give you the credit. I can add videos to it too. That’s only if you want. I have a feeling that you would do them more justice than I could since you’ve been following them a lot longer.

      As usual, thanks so much for your feedback. I love it!


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