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41 Best Songs From 1983

In 1983, there were so many popular artists and tracks that spanned genres such as rock, pop, and R&B. We’re going to tell you about the 41 best songs from 1983 that you might want to check out, so continue reading to learn all about the biggest hits of that year! 

1. Beat It – Michael Jackson 

Michael Jackson - Beat It (Official 4K Video)

First on the list is Beat It by Michael Jackson, which comes from his album Thriller. It’s notable because it was a rock song that kind of stood out among the other music on the record and also has an Eddie Van Halen guitar solo in it. It was a massive hit and went to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and Hot Black Singles chart and also hit number one in multiple countries including the Netherlands. 

2. Every Breath You Take – The Police 

The Police - Every Breath You Take (Official Music Video)

The Police had a hit with Every Breath You Take from the album Synchronicity, and this is both the signature song for them and Sting. It topped the charts in 1983 and made it to number one on the Mainstream Rock chart and Billboard Hot 100. It was their biggest track in Canada and the US that year, and it won two Grammy Awards including for Song of the Year. 

3. Cum On Feel The Noize – Quiet Riot

Quiet Riot - Cum On Feel The Noize

Metal band Quiet Riot is next with their cover of Cum On Feel The Noize, which went to number five on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. This song led to their album Metal Health topping the album charts, and it’s often referred to as one of the best hard rock tracks ever. This is one of their biggest songs and most popular. 

4. Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This) – Eurythmics, Annie Lennox, And Dave Stewart

Eurythmics, Annie Lennox, Dave Stewart - Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This) (Official Video)

Eurythmics had a smash hit with Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This), and the song was their signature track and breakthrough tune that led them to become household names. It went to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and two on the Dance Club Songs chart and was also a worldwide hit. 

5. Total Eclipse Of The Heart (Turn Around) – Bonnie Tyler 

Bonnie Tyler - Total Eclipse of the Heart (Turn Around) (Official Video)

Up next is Bonnie Tyler with Total Eclipse Of The Heart (Turn Around) coming from her album Faster Than The Speed Of Night. This song was a huge hit and went to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and it was voted by Billboard as the sixth top track of the year. In total, more than six million copies of the song have been sold worldwide, and it’s often listed as one of the top tracks of the decade. 

6. She Works Hard For The Money – Donna Summer 

Donna Summer makes the list with She Works Hard For The Money, which went to number one on the Hot Black Singles chart and three on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. It was a huge hit, and she was nominated for a Grammy Award, although she didn’t win. This song is often thought of as an anthem for women and is all about female empowerment, especially when it comes to women in the workforce. 

7. Down Under – Men at Work

Men At Work - Down Under (Official HD Video)

Men At Work released Down Under on their debut record Business As Usual, and this song went to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and Top Tracks chart. It’s one of their most well-known songs and is thought of as one of their signature tracks.

8. Africa – Toto

Toto - Africa (Official HD Video)

Rock band Toto is next with Africa from their album Toto IV, and this is one of their most well-known and popular songs to date. It hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and would be the only track that would reach the top of this chart. It also hit within the top 10 in other countries including New Zealand, Canada, Ireland, and the Netherlands. 

9. 1999 – Prince 

Prince - 1999 (Official Music Video)

Pop star Prince had a hit with 1999, and this song has been listed by Rolling Stone as one of the best tracks of all time. It hit 44 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and when he died in 2016, recharted and peaked at 27. This is thought of as one of his most famous songs and is one of his most popular among fans. 

10. Truly – Lionel Richie 

Next on our list is Truly by Lionel Richie, which was a huge hit in America and all over the world. It went to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and Adult Contemporary chart while hitting two on the R&B chart. It hit within the top 10 in countries such as the UK, and he won a Grammy in the Best Male Pop Vocal Performance category for it.

11. Our House – Madness 

Madness - Our House (Official 4K Video)

Next is the pop and ska band Madness with Our House, which was from the album The Rise & Fall. This song is the biggest hit for the band, and it went to seven on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and nine on the Rock chart. It landed at number five on the UK Singles Chart and still gets radio play today. 

12. Straight From The Heart – Bryan Adams

Bryan Adams - Straight From The Heart (Classic Version)

Canadian singer Bryan Adams had a hit with Straight From The Heart from his album Cuts Like A Knife. This song was his first major hit in the US, and it reached 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart while hitting 32 on the Adult Contemporary chart. In his home country, the track went to number one on the Canadian Contemporary chart. 

13. Photograph – Def Leppard

Def Leppard - Photograph

Up next is Photograph by Def Leppard from their album Pyromania. This song was one of their biggest hits, and it went to number one on the Top Tracks chart for six weeks and landed on the Billboard Hot 100 chart at number 12. The main theme of the song is wanting something that you can’t have. You can find this in the video game Grand Theft Auto V. 

14. She Blinded Me With Science – Thomas Dolby 

Thomas Dolby - She Blinded Me With Science (Official Video - HD Remaster)

Thomas Dolby makes the list with She Blinded Me With Science, which is a quintessential 80s song that comes from his album The Golden Age Of Wireless. This track was a huge success and made it to five on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. He is thought of as a one-hit wonder since he never really had that much success after this song.

15. Come On Eileen – Dexy’s Midnight Runners 

Come On Eileen (Single Edit)

Dexy’s Midnight Runners, which was a group out of the UK, are on our list with Come On Eileen. The song comes from the album Too-Rye-Ay, and it’s considered to be one of the best tracks of the 80s. It hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and UK Singles chart. It even won a Brit Award for Best British Single, so this song saw massive success worldwide. 

16. Girls Just Wanna Have Fun – Cyndi Lauper 

Cyndi Lauper - Girls Just Want To Have Fun (Official Video)

Cyndi Lauper is on our list with Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, which comes from her album She’s So Unusual. It was the first song from her solo album, and it went to number two on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and was a sensation worldwide. This track is thought of as her signature song, and it’s one of her most recognizable and popular tunes since it’s an anthem for women everywhere. 

17. Is There Something I Should Know? – Duran Duran 

Duran Duran - Is There Something I Should Know? (Official Music Video)

Next up is Duran Duran who had a hit in 1983 with Is There Something I Should Know? The track hit the UK Singles chart and peaked at number one. In America, it hit three on the Mainstream Rock chart, four on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and 34 on the Dance Club Songs chart. 

18. I’m Still Standing – Elton John 

Elton John - I'm Still Standing

I’m Still Standing is on our list by Elton John, and this song comes from his album Too Low For Zero. The track was constantly on MTV at the time, and it helped it become a major hit landing at number 12 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and 28 on the Adult Contemporary chart. It also hit number one in Canada, and in the UK, went to number four. 

19. Delirious – Prince

Delirious (2019 Remaster)

Calling all fans of the movie Still Smokin’, you may remember the song Delirious by Prince. The track comes from his famous album 1999 and hit number eight on the Billboard Hot 100 chart while peaking on the Canadian Singles chart at number 27. 

20. Islands In The Stream – Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton

Dolly Parton, Kenny Rogers - Islands In the Stream (Official Audio)

On our list next is Islands In The Stream by Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton, which comes from his album Eyes That See In The Dark. This song was a smash hit for the two and went to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and Adult Contemporary chart. It is thought of as not only one of the best tracks of the 80s but one of the best songs of all time. They would go on to perform this track live together several times throughout the years, including at the CMT Awards. 

21. Faithfully – Journey 

Journey - Faithfully (Official HD Video - 1983)

You can find the next song in the movie Bucky Larson: Born To Be A Star, which is Faithfully by the rock band Journey.  This is one of their most well-known tracks and comes from the album Frontiers. The song went to number 12 on the Billboard Hot 100 and Adult Contemporary chart and is one of their most recognizable tunes even though no chorus is found in this iconic power ballad. 

22. Heart and Soul – Huey Lewis and The News 

Huey Lewis And The News - Heart And Soul (Official Music Video)

Next is Huey Lewis And The News with Heart And Soul from the album Sports. This song went to number one on the Top Rock Tracks chart and eight on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. While he didn’t win, the song was nominated in the Best Rock Vocal, Group category at the Grammy Awards. Even though this isn’t his most popular tune, it’s still a fan favorite and a track that has stood the test of time and receives radio play even now. 

23. Goody Two Shoes – Adam Ant 

Adam Ant - Goody Two Shoes

Next is Adam Ant with Goody Two Shoes, and this song hit number 12 on the Billboard Hot 100 and seven on the Top Tracks chart. It also went to number one on the UK Singles chart. Considering this was his solo debut, he couldn’t have asked for a bigger hit, and it remained a hit throughout the decade. 

24. Let’s Dance – David Bowie 

David Bowie - Let's Dance (Official Video)

David Bowie makes the list with Let’s Dance, and this song is more than seven minutes long with guitars, trumpets, saxophones, and percussion instruments. It was the biggest single of his entire musical career and hit number one worldwide including in the US and UK. 

25. Puttin’ On The Ritz – Taco

Taco - Puttin' On The Ritz (Official Video)

Taco covered Puttin’ On The Ritz on their album After Eight, and it quickly became a huge hit for him hitting number four on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and becoming a global phenomenon. Since he never had a hit as big as this one, he’s often thought of as a one-hit-wonder. While you might not know the original version since most people remember his cover and still enjoy listening to it. 

26. Hey Mickey – Toni Basil

Next is Toni Basil with her hit Hey Mickey from the album Word Of Mouth, which was her debut record. This track made it to one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, three on the Dance Club Songs chart, and is thought of as her signature track. You couldn’t go anywhere in 1983 without hearing this song, and it still receives radio play today. 

27. Tell Her About It – Billy Joel 

Billy Joel - Tell Her About It (Audio)

Billy Joel had a hit with Tell Her About It, which went to number one on the Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart and Billboard Hot 100 chart. It was one of the biggest singles from his album An Innocent Man and sold over 500,000 copies. 

28. She’s a Beauty – The Tubes 

The Tubes - She's A Beauty (Official Music Video)

Landing at number one on the Top Rock Tracks is She’s A Beauty by The Tubes from their album Outside Inside. This song made it to 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and it was their biggest charting track to date. It is all about the Red Light District that is in San Francisco, California, and Fee Waybill’s experience there. 

29. Electric Avenue – Eddy Grant 

Eddy Grant - Electric Avenue (HD Audio)

Next is Eddy Grant with Electric Avenue, which comes from the album Killer On The Rampage. This was one of the biggest songs of the year and got a ton of airplay on MTV, which helped it peak at two on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. It’s a track that is talking about the London street Electric Avenue and references the Brixton Riots of 1981

30. The Safety Dance – Men Without Hats 

Men Without Hats - The Safety Dance

Canadian band Men Without Hats is next up with The Safety Dance, which is a synth-pop track that comes from the album Rhythm Of Youth. This song went to number two on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and six on the Hot Dance Club Play chart. It also hit the Billboard Top Rock Tracks chart and peaked at 12. This song is one of the biggest tracks of the decade and is thought of as one of their biggest hits. 

31. Mr. Roboto – Styx 

Styx - Mr. Roboto (Official Video)

Styx is a rock band that had a successful hit single when they released Mr. Roboto from their album Kilroy Was Here. This song landed at number three on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and Mainstream Rock chart. 

32. Dirty Laundry – Don Henley

Dirty Laundry (Live at the Millennium Concert, Staples Center, Los Angeles, CA, 12/31/1999)...

Don Henley from The Eagles released a solo album called I Can’t Stand Still, and Dirty Laundry was one of the biggest hits from this album. The song went to number one on the Top Rock Tracks chart and number three on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. It’s a song that is all about how the news is fodder for the tabloids and how the new reporting is often mean and callous. 

33. All Right – Christopher Cross 

All Right (2019 Remaster)

Christopher Cross makes the list with All Right, which comes from Another Page. He had previous hits such as Sailing, and this song also was a huge hit landing on the Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart at number three. It also landed on the Billboard Hot 100 chart at number 12. In 2017, it was played during the beginning of the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference. 

34. The Other Guy – Little River Band 

Australian Band Little River Band had a hit with The Other Guy from their album Greatest Hits. This song hit six on the Easy Listening chart and 11 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. In their home country of Australia, it went to number 18 and was the first track that featured John Farnham, their new lead singer. 

35. Stand Back – Stevie Nicks 

Stevie Nicks - Stand Back (Official Music Video) [HD Remaster]

Next is Stevie Nicks who had a hit with Stand Back from her album The Wild Heart, which was one of her solo albums. It went to two on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart and hit number five on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. This was a song that was all over the radio, and it’s a track that also can be found on the setlist for their shows. 

36. China Girl – David Bowie 

David Bowie - China Girl (Official Video)

David Bowie had a hit with China Girl in 1983, and this song comes from the album Let’s Dance. This track went to three on the Mainstream Rock chart and hit 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. There are Chinese bells used in the song to help it have more of a Chinese feel, and it’s one of his more popular tracks from this particular album. 

37. You Can’t Hurry Love – Phil Collins 

Phil Collins - You Can't Hurry Love (Official Music Video)

Next is You Can’t Hurry Love by Phil Collins, which is a cover of the same song by The Supremes. His version was very successful, and it hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and UK Singles chart. 

38. We’ve Got Tonight – Kenny Rogers and Sheena Easton 

Kenny Rogers, Sheena Easton - We've Got Tonight (Audio)

Hitting number one on the Hot Country Songs chart is We’ve Got Tonight, which is by Kenny Rogers and Sheena Easton. This track was one of the biggest songs of the year and hit two on the Adult Contemporary chart, six on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and peaked at number 28 on the UK Singles chart. It is often on the list of best love tracks, and it’s one of the biggest hits to this day for both Rogers and Easton. 

39. Come Dancing – The Kinks 

The Kinks - Come Dancing

The Kinks are on the list with Come Dancing, which comes from the album State Of Confusion. This British group wrote the song because the lead singer’s sister died of a heart attack when she was dancing at a club. It peaked at six on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and 16 on the Adult Contemporary chart. 

40. Your Love Is Driving Me Crazy – Sammy Hagar 

Sammy Hagar "Your Love Is Driving Me Crazy" (Official Music Video)

Rock musician Sammy Hagar is on our list with Your Love Is Driving Me Crazy, which comes from his album Three Lock Box. This was his only solo song that hit within the top 20, and it made it to 13 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. It also peaked at three on the Top Rock Tracks chart and was one of the biggest hits of the year. 

41. Don’t Cry – Asia 

Asia - Don't Cry (Official Music Video)

Asia is last on this list with Don’t Cry, which went to number one on the Mainstream Rock chart and 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 list. This was the second time the group hit the Billboard charts at the number one position, and the song peaked at 33 on the UK Singles chart.

Recommended Next:

Best songs of the ’80s

Best songs from 1982

Best songs from 1984

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