It’s Terrie Carr and WDHA listeners LOVE a Friday 80’s All Request Lunch Hour!
In fact, they love the “Greaty Eighties” in general.
Hair Bands, Party Tunes, Heritage Rock Acts making new music, MTV favorites, Super Groups…The 80’s had it all.
Back in January I created a list of 10 Underrated 80’s Bands” that included – Cinderella, Kix, Tesla, Billy Squire, Loverboy, The Fixx, INXS, Blue Murder, Night Ranger and Kings X- . WDHA listeners have been hitting me up with a bunch of their favorites and I included a bunch of mine for an “Underrated 80’s Part 2” .
The 80’s were not just hair bands. Bands led the revolution for radio formats, rock hybrids and genres that have withstood the test of time.
I tried to cover multiple styles, sounds and songs. Who remembers these bands that should have been bigger?!

  • The Alarm

    The Welsh band formed in 1981 led by Mike Peters and have an amazing body of work and were often compared to U2.
    Strength, 68 Guns, Rain In The Summertime, Sold Me Down The River, Spirit Of 76′. So many awesome tunes with a style all their own. This band should have been HUGE! They are still playing shows and ironically are in NYC this weekend at The Gramercy Theater.

  • April Wine

    This Canadian band was formed in the 70’s but had their biggest success in the early 80’s with “Nature Of The Beast” which gave us tunes “Sign Of The Gypsy Queen” and “Just Between You And Me”.

    They were known for amazing musicianship and great live performances.

    The band continued touring even after losing original members and eventually called it quits in 2022.

  • The Call

    God I LOVED this band! Formed in California in 1980 and led by the brilliant Michael Been, these guys had a cavalcade of KILLER tunes. Michael’s son Robert is a member if the Band Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and I remember seeing him working as their sound guy when I saw the band live and flipped out because “That was the guy from The Call!”

    Sadly Michael Been died while on tour with his son in BRMC at the young age of 60 of a heart attack.

    The Call is a phenomenal band and if you don’t know them, grab some of their music and you will be inspired.

  • Triumph

    Great Canadian band, always compared to Rush. Not fair! Triumph had some awesome radio hits – “Magic Power”, “Fight The Good Fight” , “World Of Fantasy” “Lay It On The Line”and more….They SCREAM 80’s rock to me. And the never had BIG HAIR!

    Love them……

  • The Replacements

    Absolute pioneers of the alternative rock movement, Paul Westerberg, Tommy Stinson, Bob Stinson, Slim Dunlap and Chris Mars never got the credit they deserve for cleansing our musical palates and opening the 80’s windows for a fresh new sound.

  • The Cars

    One of the greatest bands of the 70’s and 80’s, I just had to include them. Ric, Ben, Elliot and Greg were new wave pioneers, brilliant sound crafters and fantastic musicians. Every album shines. Yes, they have been recognized, but they are totally underrated. Especially guitarist Elliot Easton who is a master! Good God that guy can play! I love them so much. And not just because they are “CARS”!

  • Living Colour

    New York City rockers Living Color were ahead of their time.  With roots in rock, punk funk, jazz…heck they did it all.

    Their 1988 debut “Vivid” earned them a grammy for the song “Cult Of Personality” (and they won a second grammy for their second release “Time’s Up” too)  and the pairing of Corey Glover and Vernon Reid was a perfect frontman, lead guitarist combination.  The bands catalog is as relevant today as it was in their early days.

  • Faith No More

    I included Faith No More because their most successful album “The Real Thing” came out in 1988 and Mike Patton joined the band right before that. This band ushered in a completely new sound and never gets the credit that they deserve. While the early 1990’s were also a successful time for them they never get lumped in with influential bands of the 1980’s OR 1990’s and they totally were. Metal, Punk, Fun, one of the first rock/rap combos I ever heard too- “FAITH NO MORE” …….!
    I saw them a few years ago and they are as timeless as ever live.

  • Vixen

    Touted as the “Female Bon Jovi” the ladies dominated MTV at a time when men ruled the hair metal scene.

    Cool tunes, great musicianship and perseverance at a time where women were discounted, Vixen deserves to be on this list!


  • Y&T

    Y&T (Yesterday and Today) were truly underrated. They never had the success of many of the 80’s bands that dominated MTV and arenas in the 1980’s, but Y&T are such a talented band with a killer vocalist in Dave Meniketti.

    Love hair metal and aren’t familiar with them? Grab some catalog and have an 80’s metal party!

    And they had fun videos too!


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