The Best of 1980’s Electronic Dance Music

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


A look back at the best of 1980’s electronic dance music, from new wave to synth-pop to industrial.


The decade of the 1980s was a time of great change in the world of electronic dance music. We saw the rise of synthesizer-based music and the advent of house and techno. We also saw the fall of disco and the rise of hip-hop. This decade was truly a time of transition for electronic dance music.

In this article, we will take a look at some of the best electronic dance music of the 1980s. We will explore the different subgenres that emerged during this decade, and we will also highlight some of the key artists who helped to shape this genre. So put on your dancing shoes and let’s get started!

What is Electronic Dance Music?

In the late 1970s and early 1980s, a new form of music emerged from the nightclubs of Europe. This new music, which came to be known as electronic dance music (EDM), was a product of the convergence of several different genres of music. EDM is characterized by a heavy reliance on synthesizers and drum machines, and is often produced with the help of computers.

Where did it come from?

The origins of electronic dance music can be traced back to the early 1980s, when artists began experimenting with synthesizers and other electronic music-making devices. Early pioneers such as Kraftwerk, Giorgio Moroder, and Jean-Michel Jarre laid the foundations for the genre, which soon became hugely popular in nightclubs and on dancefloors around the world.

In the 1990s and 2000s, electronic dance music evolved rapidly, with new subgenres and styles emerging all the time. Today, there is a huge range of different EDM genres and subgenres, from commercial house and club-oriented trance to more underground styles like techno and drum & bass.

What are the different genres?

The term “electronic dance music” (EDM) encompasses a wide variety of genres, including house, techno, trance, Drum and Bass (DnB), dubstep, and hardstyle.

Each genre has its own distinct history, sound, and culture. House music, for example, originated in the 1980s Chicago club scene, and is characterized by a four-on-the-floor beat, massive basslines, and soulful vocals. In contrast, dubstep emerged from the UK garage scene in the early 2000s and is known for its dark, menacing basslines and minimalistic percussion.

While there is a great deal of diversity within each genre, there are also many commonalities between them. For instance, all EDM genres are based around synthesizers and drum machines, and many feature similar sound effects and production techniques. Moreover, all EDM genres share a DIY ethos; they were initially popularized by underground scenes that operated outside of the mainstream music industry.

Despite their origins in underground scenes, many EDM genres have since become commercialized – particularly house and techno. In recent years, EDM festivals have become increasingly popular around the world, with mega-festivals like Tomorrowland and Ultra Music Festival attracting hundreds of thousands of attendees each year.

The most popular songs of the genre are “I Wanna Dance With Somebody,” “Pump Up the Jam,” and “Get Down on It.”

The Best of 1980’s Electronic Dance Music

There are many great songs that were popular in the 1980’s. This was the decade of electronic dance music. Many of the songs that were popular in the 1980’s are still popular today. This list will cover the best of 1980’s electronic dance music.

The birth of Electronic Dance Music

Electronic dance music (EDM), also known as dance music, club music, or simply dance, is a broad range of percussive electronic music genres made largely for nightclubs, raves, and festivals. EDM is generally produced for playback by DJs who create seamless selections of tracks, called a mix, by segueing from one recording to another.

The genre developed from 1970s disco and 1980s Euro disco. By the early 2010s the term “electronic dance music” and the initialism “EDM” was being pushed by the U.S. music industry and media. In Europe, EDM is more commonly called ‘dance music’, or simply ‘dance’.
During the 1980s, disco clubs were increasingly frequented by house and acid house fans. House music quickly spread to other American cities such as Detroit (where techno was created) and New York City. Frankie Knuckles is often credited with first creating House music in Chicago during the early 1980s; his style of editing disco tracks became known as “Manipulation”.

The rise of the synthesizer

In the 1980s, electronic dance music was born with the rise of the synthesizer. This new type of music was created by DJs and producers who used electronic instruments to create rhythmic beats and melodies. This new style of music quickly became popular with clubgoers and soon became a mainstream genre.

During this decade, many different subgenres of electronic dance music emerged, each with its own distinctive sound. Some of the most popular subgenres included house music, techno music, and drum and bass. As the genre evolved, so did the technology used to create it. By the end of the decade, digital samplers and sequencers were being used by producers to create even more complex and innovative sounds.

The 1980s was a seminal decade for electronic dance music, and its influence can still be felt today. Many of the pioneering artists and producers from this era are still active in the industry, and their work continues to shape the sound of dance music.

The popularity of Electronic Dance Music

The 1980’s saw the rise of electronic dance music (EDM) as a mainstream genre. This was thanks to the increasing popularity of nightclubs and the development of new technologies that allowed for greater creativity and experimentation in music production. The result was a whole new form of music that was highly addictive and perfect for dancing.

The best EDM of the 1980’s fused together elements of different genres to create something truly unique. From the early techno and synth-pop of acts like Depeche Mode and New Order, to the more experimental sounds of Kraftwerk and Brian Eno, the 1980’s were a decade that saw electronic music come into its own.

With its catchy melodies, synthesizer hooks and drum machine beats, EDM became the soundtrack to a whole generation of clubgoers. And while it has evolved considerably since then, the best EDM of the 1980’s still sounds fresh today. So if you’re looking for some retro dancefloor fillers, then look no further than our list of the best 1980’s electronic dance music.


When it comes to Electronic Dance Music, the 1980’s was a defining decade. From the first EBM tracks that started appearing in the early part of the decade, to the iconic anthems that are still being played today, the 1980’s gave birth to a genre that would go on to have a profound impact on popular culture. In this guide, we’ve taken a look at some of the best 1980’s Electronic Dance Music, and highlighted some of the key tracks that defined the genre. We hope you enjoy discovering (or rediscovering) some of these classic tunes!

Similar Posts