Hidden Gem Songs from the ‘80s

These little-known songs are a great way to blast us into the past

Singer Todd Rundgren performs his song at a concert in 1978.

Public Domain

Singer Todd Rundgren performs his song at a concert in 1978.

“Rescue Me” by The Alarm (1987)  

Description: This song sings about a person living a tough life on the run as a fugitive. Based on the lyrics, this song should sound melancholy, but it’s the opposite of that. It’s very catchy and is a song that stays in your head. The best part of the song is possibly the upbeat intro.

“I Still Believe” by The Call (1986)

Description: This upbeat song sings about keeping faith and hope in tough times. The lyrics aren’t the only quality part of the song though since it has a quality drumbeat and keyboard. The Band itself is a bit of a hidden gem since they have many great songs that most people haven’t discovered.

“Big Ideas” by Randy Stonehill (1983)

Description: Randy Stonehill sings about America’s most pressing issues and problems such as the environment, economics and the lack of compassion in the world. While the song sounds a bit light-hearted, the lyrics behind it are serious and really make you contemplate these issues. The issues from the song for the most part are still relevant today since we still face some environmental and economic issues today.

“True Colors” by Asia (1983)

Description: While most people know the song “Heat of the Moment” from the band Asia, this song is not as well known. It is a quality piece of music that sings about finding out who a person truly is. The song has a good mix of different instruments blending together beautifully. 

“Bang the Drum All Day” by Todd Rundgren (1982)

Description: This song is a very upbeat song with a fast pace that has a party type atmosphere. It’s a simple song that is super fun to listen to and easy to dance to. It is a fun song to listen to on a Friday and get excited for the weekend. 

“Roses are Red” by the Mac Brothers (1988) 

Description: The young musicians at the time took a pop twist on the basic poem, Roses Are Red. The song has synths that add to the fast tempo and includes flavorful lyrics focused on young love. 

“You are the one” by A-ha (1988)

Description: Love is a common repetition in many songs but this song is different with a funky and groovy intro that lasts through the entirety of the song. The lyrics are filled with love and the music is joyous with a fast and upbeat tempo. 

“Hole in My Heart” by Cyndi Lauper (1988)

Description: Cyndi Lauper has many songs that are fun, cheerful and playful, but this song gives you the feeling to dance like nobody’s watching. Plus, the guitars add a more vintage sound. 

“I Couldn’t Say No…” duet by Robert Orral, Carlene Carter (1982)

Description: This song is filled with love and strong emotions. Not to mention the hypnotic beat and instruments come together to create an overall feeling of playfulness and timeless emotion. 


Description: A ‘80s electronic twist on the tune of Sonata No. 8 by Beethoven. The song is a bit longer than one is accustomed to but has a great tune and amazing vocals that are highly-listenable.