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Let's Rock the 1980s
Rock and roll in the 1980s was a curious mix of everything that had gone before plus a whole lot more: big stars, big hair, and big shoulder pads.
You had new wave, punk, heavy metal and dance sitting side by side in the charts. After years of album rock, concept albums and tracks that could stretch across a side of vinyl, the focus returned to singles and commercial viability. It was a decade in which small sub-genres took hold. There was a Minnesota sound, a Seattle sound, a Manchester sound. Synthesizers replaced guitars and drum machines set a relentless beat. Some ‘80s stars had enduring careers, like Madonna, Prince, Michael Jackson, and U2. Others burned for a shorter time, like Cyndi Lauper, the B-52s and Guns N’ Roses.
This was also the decade in which rap came out of the ‘hood and began penetrating suburbia, led by Run-DMC and Public Enemy, changing the way white kids like the Beastie Boys walked and talked and wore their hats. It was a time of Boy George and the Smiths, Bon Jovi and Talking Heads.
It was all going on. To enjoy the decade, check out our New, Best, Fun list and explore the '80s.