Back to the 80s: Best 80s Duet Songs – Kickin’ it Old School

I felt it was about that time to give you an 80s topic again. One of my most popular articles is my Top Duets of All Time, so I thought I would focus this down to my favorite decade. I will publish my list of my favorite duets just from 1980-1989.

As with my last Duets list, I need to first specify a couple qualifiers. First, I will only consider songs where the singers are not already a member of the same group, so songs by groups like Simon & Garfunkel or Hall & Oates would not count towards my list. Second, I will only consider songs where the collaboration is between two vocalists and not only a musician, so songs featuring Carlos Santana or Jim Brickman would not count towards my list. Some of the songs on this list are admittedly a little cheesy, but like much of the 80s, in some cases that is what makes them special.

You will find links to videos for many of the songs in case you are not familiar with it or just want to take a trip down memory lane. Here is OLD SCHOOL’S TOP 10 DUETS OF THE 80s (+ Bonus 20):
Honorable Mention: My List of Top TV Theme Songs is another popular list and there are two 80s sitcoms which had duets as the theme song. “Without Us” is the theme song from Family Ties and performed by Johnny Mathis & Deniece Williams. [link to video] Also, “As Long As We Got Each Other” is the theme song from Growing Pains and performed by B.J. Thomas & Jennifer Warnes. [link to video] I felt both of these duets at least deserved honorable mention.

30. “Walk This Way” by Run DMC & Aerosmith [link to video]Run DMC & Aerosmith

29. “Yah Mo Be There” by James Ingram & Michael McDonald [link to video of live performance]

28. “State of Shock” by Michael Jackson (Jacksons) & Mick Jagger – was originally intended to be a duet between Jackson and Freddie Mercury from Queen [link to song playing]

27. “Baby Come To Me” by James Ingram & Patti Austin [link to video of live performance]

Jackson & McCarthey26. “The Girl is Mine” by Michael Jackson & Paul McCartney [link to song playing]

25. “We’ve Got Tonight” by Sheena Easton & Kenny Rogers – cover of a Bob Seger song [link to video of live performance]

24. “You’re a Friend of Mine” by Jackson Browne & Clarence Clemons [link to video]

23. “Friends and Lovers” by Carl Anderson & Gloria Loring [link to video]

22. “Stop Dragging My Heart Around” by Stevie Nicks & Tom PettyStevie Nicks [link to video]

21. “Baby Grand” by Billy Joel & Ray Charles [link to video]

20. “(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life” by Bill Medley & Jennifer Warnes – from the movie Dirty Dancing [link to video]

19. “On My Own” by Patti Labelle & Michael McDonald [link to video]

18. “Separate Lives” by Phil Collins & Marilyn Martin – from the movie White Nights [link to video]

17. “Don’t Fall In Love With a Dreamer” by Kenny Rogers & Kim Carnes [link to video]

16. “Up Where We Belong” by Joe Cocker & Jennifer Warnes – from the movie An Officer and A Gentleman [link to video of live performance]

Ozzy & Lita15. “Close My Eyes Forever” by Lita Ford & Ozzy Osbourne [link to video]

14. “Somewhere Out There” by James Ingram & Linda Rondstadt – from the animated movie An American Tail [link to video]

13. “After All” by Peter Cetera & Cher – from the movie Chances Are [link to video]

12. “Easy Lover” by Phil Collins & Philip Bailey (from Earth, Wind & Fire) [link to video]Collins & Bailey

11. “Almost Paradise” by Ann Wilson (from Heart) & Mike Reno (from Loverboy) – from the movie Footloose [link to video]

10. “Endless Love” by Lionel Richie & Diana Ross – from the movie Endless Love [link to video of live performance]

9. “Say Say Say” by Paul McCartney & Michael Jackson [link to video]

8. “U Got the Look” by Sheena Easton & Prince [link to video]

7. “You and I” by Eddie Rabbit & Crystal Gayle [link to song playing]

6. “Don’t Give Up” by Peter Gabriel & Kate Bush [link to video]

5. “Leather and Lace” by Stevie Nicks & Don Henley [link to song playing]

4. “What Have I Done To Deserve This” by The Pet Shop Boys & Dusty Springfield [link to video]

3. “The Next Time I Fall” by Peter Cetera & Amy Grant [link to video]

Aretha & George2. “I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)” by George Michael & Aretha Franklin [link to video]

1. “Under Pressure” by Queen & David Bowie [link to traditional video] + [link to edited live concert video]

There is my list. I hope you enjoyed it and the links to ALL of the videos. It is interesting to notice that several artists appear multiple times on this list. There are three artists that each appear 3 times on the list and those include: James Ingram, Michael Jackson and Jennifer Warnes. I feel Ingram is a very underrated R&B/Soul artist and his voice is amazing.  It is also interesting that 7 of the songs on the list come from movie soundtracks. Here is a link to My Top 50 Songs from 80s Movies list for other great songs from 80s soundtracks.

That will do it for another issue of Kickin’ it Old School. Thanks so much for reading. If you are looking for more 80s related articles, please click on this link. If you want to find more Old School Top 10 Lists, please click on this link. Peace and much love.

Check this out: So many videos out there can be very amusing. I have always found the Caddyshack gopher to crack me up, but here is a link to a very serious gopher who will give you a very dramatic look.  You will want to watch it several times.

Quote of the day: “Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life” -Berthold Auerbach

Download this: I have recommended some of the songs on the above list before, but here are a couple more recommendations that I have not yet listed here… “Under Pressure” by Queen & David Bowie, “Don’t Fall In Love With A Dreamer” by Kenny Rogers & Kim Carnes and “What Have I Done To Deserve This” by The Pet Shop Boys


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  1. I really liked the theme song for Mission Impossible, with it’s 5/4 timing!! a tough timing to even count to!!!

  2. But… where is the Parton & Stallone duet from the movie Rhinestone? Oh, this is a list of the BEST duets. Thanks.

    Either this is copied, or the result of a lot of work on your part. Good job. This blog deserves a strong readership.

  3. Oh wow! – Talk about getting into the way-back machine! – I had forgotten about several of these! – and look how young everyone looks! Yikes!
    Great post as usual OS! ;D

  4. I can’t decide what my favorite was. So if I have to pick, how about, Somewhere Out There.

  5. I am looking for a song , all I know is the video was a woman singing to him on a billboard and he was singing to her on one , as if they had to break up but was still in love !

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