We don’t know about you, but we have always thought that the 80s was the absolute best time for songs that you could have a bit of a boogie to. There is something about the epic synths, amazing guitar solos, and over-the-top vocals which has always seemed to resonate with us.
If you are in the mood for some of the best 80s party songs, then this list is going to be for you. Every single song on this list is guaranteed to be a hit at a party…or if you just fancy getting into the groove while cleaning your home. Let’s jump in because some real excitement lies ahead!
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1. Celebration – Kool ; The Gang
We don’t think we have ever been to a party where this song hasn’t been belted out at least once. It is one of those 80s party songs that works for pretty much any occasion. Well, except for a funeral…unless you didn’t like that person, we suppose. Whenever you are in the mood to celebrate something, then whip out this track because it is guaranteed to put a smile on your face.
2. Thriller – Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson’s thriller has one of the coolest music videos of all time. It really leaned into the horror theme, but dancing zombies can’t be scary, right? Of course, not! This song is a bit on the long side, but every minute that you listen to it is absolute perfection. Great for Halloween parties this one. Although, we are sure that you already knew that.
3. Hungry Like The Wolf – Duran Duran
Duran Duran had a lot of hits that could easily have been included on this list. They were pumping out some real belters including Rio. However, we are going with Hungry Like The Wolf on this list. We just love the chorus, and it is one of those tracks that you can really sing along to. The synths are great too.
4. Just Can’t Get Enough – Depeche Mode
If you love your synth-heavy 80s tracks, and we are sure that you do because you are looking up the best 80s party songs, then stick this track on your list. It is a basic rhythm song, but it is one of those earworms. The simple melody is just going to get stuck in your head and well, you just can’t get enough.
5. Africa – Toto
Did you know that when they wrote Africa, Toto had never actually stepped foot inside of Africa? Well, you probably did know that. The song is not exactly great on the whole being factual front. However, don’t let that put you off of this amazing hit. We are sure that you are going to be boogying along when you hear the words “I bless the rains down in Africa”.
6. Livin’ On a Prayer – Bon Jovi
This is a song that you are going to want to whip out for just about any party. Right from the opening guitar wah-wah riff through to the end, this song is a wild ride and characterizes damn near everything that the 80s stood for. Plus, you just know everybody is going to join in when you sing “ohhhhhhhh you’re halfway there…..’. We are sure that you can fill in the response to that.
7. Love Shack – The B52s
The first time we ever heard Love Shack from the B52s was in some dodgy karaoke bar somewhere in Spain. This was well after the 80s, but the song is everything that the 80s stood for. Crazy music with amazing vocals, a great and colorful music video, and a banging hit that you could sing along to.
Sure, the lyrics probably didn’t come close to the sort of thing that the likes of Dylan could pump out, but who cares when you take a trip to the Love Shack? Oh, side note. Also a great song for karaoke duets too!
8. 1999 – Prince
This song was played a lot at the turn of the millennium (if you were around then), but it came out in the 1980s. Prince was very forward-thinking and assumed that everybody would be partying in 1999. Guess what? They did! They partied exactly like it was 1999, and you can do exactly the same if you pop this song on your 80s music playlist. You will probably be doing so sans the 1990s hairstyles, though.
9. Super Freak – Rick James
‘She’s a Super Freak. Super Freak’. Yeah. You know the one. While it may not necessarily be the first track that people reach for when they are looking for a song to get up and dance to, we see this as a great song to pump people up as the evening wears on. This song was much more popular in the US than it was in Europe.
10. Our House – Madness
Any of the tracks from the British ska band are going to be great for a party. Try on Baggy Trousers or It Must Be Love for size. However, we are going to go with Our House as our pick of their 80s hits. This song perfectly described British home life in an upbeat way. Lots and lots of trumpets too. Madness are still selling out gigs around the world, and they are just as active on stage as they were way back when.
11. Video Killed The Radio Star – The Buggles
This is another song that we are ashamed that we didn’t pay much attention to in the 80s. It was a perfect highlight of the way that the music industry was going at the time. Still, many people will have danced along to this track over the last couple of decades. Those dance pad games that you would find featured in many arcades had this as a staple banger.
12. Never Gonna Give You Up – Rick Astley
Outside of the UK, Rick Astley has always been billed as a one-hit wonder, and what a wonder that song was. Thanks to the rickroll craze, this song was, at one point, the most-listened-to track on YouTube. That only worked because it is so great to listen to. You probably will have heard of this song before, but we figured we would remind you of it. Maybe you will now hop on over to YouTUbe and give it a play.
13. Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go – Wham!
Wham! is one of the greatest bands of the 80s, and George Michael went on to have a fantastic solo career of his own. This is probably one of the biggest of the Wham! hits, well outside of Christmas. We dare you to listen to this song without doing the jitterbug as soon as the song commands you to (which is basically the first line).
14. I Wanna Dance With Somebody – Whitney Houston
Want to get everybody out on that dancefloor as soon as possible? Get Whitney Houston to beg them to! Oh, I wanna dance with somebody. You know the lyrics, and you may even be singing along in your head right now. If you want to bring the mood down a little (but still have fun), then I Will Always Love You is a great 80s track for a love dance.
15. Another One Bites The Dust – Queen
Many of the big Queen songs happened in the 1970s, but Another One Bites The Dust managed to squeak into the 80s, so it warranted inclusion on this list. An epic bassline kicks off this song, and that groove doesn’t stop until that last note. There aren’t that many 80s songs that are still loved by people today. This one is a song everybody will have heard of.
16. Billie Jean – Michael Jackson
Yes. Another Michael Jackson song. No. We are not making an apology. This guy was a God when it came to 80s party songs. Billie Jeans is underlined by an awesome drum beat that is guaranteed to get everybody bopping along. You probably won’t be able to nail his vocals, though.
17. Tainted Love – Soft Cell
Sometimes I feel I’ve got to…boom boom…run away. It is always that couple of beats between some of the lyrics that make us love this song. It makes us do some pretty weird hand movements when we are singing along to the song, though.
18. Walk This Way – Run D.M.C. ; Aerosmith
Walk This Way was a song from Aerosmith long before Run D.M.C, helped them remix it. Ignore all of the lyrics in this song (it is about a fella seducing his cousin), and just bop along to the beat. The drums are amazing, and the rap is very 80s.
19. Ghostbusters – Ray Parker Jr.
If there’s something strange, in your neighborhood, who you gonna call? Yep. The exact answer that you gave there is the same answer that people will give at any party that you play this at.
20. Flashdance – Irene Cara
Flashdance was an absolutely terrible movie, but at least we got something good out of it with the song Flashdance from Irene Cara. ‘What a Feeling’ is a lyric that is going to put a smile on anybody’s face.
21. La Bamba – Los Lobos
You may not understand a single word uttered in this Spanish song, but we can guarantee that you are going to try to sing them the second that you hear the opening riff. We do it every time. Absolute 80s classic.
Bonus Hit 80s Party Songs
We couldn’t possibly talk about every one of the 80s party songs to ever exist, so let’s wrap up with a list of a few awesome songs that you may want to check out.
- Let’s Get Physical – Olivia Newton John
- All NIght Long – Lionel Richie
- Sweet Childs o’ Mine – Guns n’ Roses
- Axel F – Harold Faltermeyer
- Call Me – Blondie
- Addicted to Love – Robert Palmer
- Like a Virgin – Madonna
- I’m So Excited – The Pointer Sisters
- Jump – Van Halen
- Take on Me – A-Ha
- Red, Red Wine – UB40
- Pour Some Sugar on Me – Def Leppard
- Summer of 69 – Bryan Adams
- Dancing In The Dark – Bruce Springsteen
- Beat It – Michael Jackson
- Eye of the Tiger – Survivtor
That wraps up our list of the best 80s party songs. We are sure that we could have included 100s more, but you have hours of listening pleasure right here. Whether you are looking to entertain yourself or have a massive party, we are sure that every one of these songs is going to be a smash.
As a multi-passionate creative and a self-proclaimed frequent flyer of weddings, Kiara combines her love for the wedding industry and experience as a professional wedding photographer with her writing abilities to share tips, tricks, and helpful information with couples. She is the owner of Switech Studios a popular wedding photography business. With tons of insider information from behind her camera lens on how to have the best wedding possible, Kiara’s in-depth knowledge is sure to put you on the road to wedding planning success.