Growing up in the 80s, I took my music very. seriously. I spent HOURS sitting in front of my boom box recording my favorite songs off the radio onto my cassette tapes. So when Mike told me the readers of Rolling Stone made a list of The Ten Worst Songs of The 80s, I was curious… and then appalled, because these are awesome songs! Someone has to defend their honor, and that someone is moi!
10. Rick Astley- Never Gonna Give You Up
First of all, without this song there would be no Rick Roll, and that alone makes it worthwhile. But what really makes it great is the fact that it is sung by a 99-pound ginger weakling who sounds like Barry White first thing in the morning. So great!
9. Taco -Puttin’ On The Ritz
How can people hate this song? At some point someone somewhere said, “Hey, we should cover that Irving Berlin song from The Roarin’ Twenties, but do it with crazy techno beats!” And someone somewhere replied, “What a totally awesome idea! Let’s do it!” That is something that could ONLY have happened in the 80s.
8. Toni Basil- Mickey
If I had been a cheerleader I bet I would really love this song. As it is, whenever I hear it on the radio now I feel an uncontrollable urge to have spirit fingers.
7. Bobby McFerrin- Don’t Worry Be Happy
I totally owned this cassette SINGLE. Yep. Bobby McFerrin performed the entire song, even “singing” the musical instrument sounds. I, uh…definitely didn’t spend time in my room trying to do the same thing. Nope.
6. Falco- Rock Me Amadeus
This is a synth-pop song about Mozart. With German lyrics. By a guy named “Falco.” So OF COURSE it went straight to number one. I love any song that teaches me German. Er war Superstar! Er war populär!
5. Men Without Hats- The Safety Dance
OK. I kind of hate this song, so I can’t defend it too much. Yet, every time I hear it, I sing along. Damn ear worm!
4. Wham!- Wake Me Up Before You Go Go
I cannot imagine the 80s without Wham! George Michael IS the 80s. I copied his short-shorts and yellow gloves, and I rocked ’em.
3. Chris DeBurgh- Lady In Red
No one is allowed to hate this song! It was playing when I had my first slow dance… cheek to cheek… with a boy. Thank you, Brian Nelson!
2. Europe- The Final Countdown
This is the theme song to Gob Bluth’s magic show in Arrested Development. It is impossible to hate anything related to Will Arnet. Also, the keyboard part. Doo-doo-d00-d00ooooooo! Doo-doo-d00-d00-d0ooooooo0!
1. Starship- We Built This City
Mike will kill me for saying this, but I never got Jefferson Airplane. “White Rabbit” is not for me… I change the station every time. But when the band got poppy and changed its name 87 times, I started to dig it. When “We Built This City” comes on the radio now, I’m like YEAH TURN THAT CRAP UP!
I’m off to dig out my old cassettes (because of course I still have them) and have a listening party with Annie!