’80s Hits Essentials
An irresistible synth melody. A snare drum loaded with reverb. A guitar line that’s tight and powerful. If the song you’re listening to has at least one of these things, it may be from the 1980s, the decade when disco waned and hip-hop emerged, Madonna blew up in the US, the hitmaking team of Stock Aitken Waterman pumped out smash singles for Rick Astley and Dead or Alive, and Michael Jackson broke sales and chart records around the world. Of course, thanks to MTV, this was also a decade when the biggest stars weren’t just heard but also seen, as the music video gave artists a new medium to explore. Peter Gabriel mastered the form with psychedelic mini-masterpieces to complement his vibrant art-pop, while Prince, in the midst of reinventing rock ’n’ roll, turned out two feature-length film masterpieces with classic soundtracks to match.