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Years in music: 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983
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Years: 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983
File:Siouxsie sioux.jpg

Alternative rock singer Siouxsie Sioux in 1980

This is a list of notable events in music that took place in the year 1980.

Events[]

January–March[]

  • January 1
  • January 7 – At the age of 44, songwriter Larry Williams is found dead in his Los Angeles, California, home of a gunshot wound to the head. Investigators are never able to determine whether his death was a murder or suicide.
  • January 13The Beach Boys, Grateful Dead, and Jefferson Starship perform at a benefit concert at Oakland Coliseum for the people of Kampuchea.
  • January 14Rush release Permanent Waves, which eventually becomes the band's fifth platinum album.
  • January 16Paul McCartney is arrested in Tokyo for possession of a half pound of marijuana. The remaining part of McCartney's and Wings' tour was then canceled.
  • January 19 – The first UK Indie Chart is published in Record Week, with Spizzenergi's "Where's Captain Kirk" topping the singles chart, and Adam and the Ants' Dirk Wears White Sox topping the album chart.[1]
  • January 25Paul McCartney is released from a Japanese jail and ejected from the country by Japanese authorities.
  • February 7Pink Floyd's The Wall Tour opens at the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena.
  • February 8David Bowie and his wife of nearly 10 years, Angie, file for divorce. Bowie gets custody of their 9-year-old son, Zowie.
  • February 14Lou Reed marries Sylvia Morales in New York City's Greenwich Village.
  • February 19Bon Scott, lead singer of AC/DC, dies in London. Although common folklore cites pulmonary aspiration of vomit as the cause of his death, the official cause is listed as "Acute alcohol poisoning" and "Death by Misadventure".
  • February 23Ron Wood of the Rolling Stones and his wife are arrested for cocaine possession on the Caribbean island of Saint Martin. They are set free after spending five days in custody due to the inability of authorities to prove the cocaine in the apartment belonged to either of them.
  • February 29Buddy Holly's trademark glasses and the Big Bopper's wristwatch are "rediscovered" in old police files by the Mason City, Iowa, sheriff (both were killed in a plane crash on February 3, 1959, along with singer Ritchie Valens).
  • March 1Patti Smith marries former MC5 member Fred "Sonic" Smith.
  • March 3Sotheby's auction house in London auctions off a Rivera Hotel, Las Vegas, napkin signed by Elvis Presley for ₤500. Other items auctioned included four American dollar bills autographed by the Beatles, for £220 and a collection of personal letters belonging to the Rolling Stones, also for £220.
  • March 8 – March 16 – Tbilisi Rock Festival (1980): the first state-sanctioned rock music festival in the Soviet Union.
  • March 14Record producer Quincy Jones receives a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
  • March 19 – Elvis Presley's autopsy was subpoenaed during the trial of Dr. George Nichopoulous, who would later be found guilty of over-prescribing drugs to Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis and other clients.
  • March 20Radio Caroline shuts down in the UK after radio ship Mi Amigo sinks in a storm.

April–June[]

  • April 1Brian Johnson is made the new lead singer of AC/DC.
  • April 13 – The Broadway musical Grease closes its run of 3,388 performances, making it the longest running show on Broadway up until that time.
  • April 14
  • April 17 – As the "official guests of State", Bob Marley and the Wailers perform at Zimbabwe's Independence festival. Marley calls the event the "greatest honor of my life."
  • April 19Johnny Logan wins the 25th Eurovision Song Contest for Ireland, with the song "What's Another Year".
  • April 25Black Sabbath release Heaven and Hell, their first album to feature Ronnie James Dio on vocals.
  • April 30 – The Roger Daltrey film, McVicar, opens in London.
  • May 4America's Top 10, the television version of radio's American Top 40 and hosted by Casey Kasem, debuts this week in syndication.
  • May 18Ian Curtis, vocalist of pioneering post-punk group Joy Division, hangs himself in his Macclesfield home, just one day before Joy Division are scheduled to begin their first U.S. tour.
  • June 25
    • Rock and Roll pioneer Bill Haley performs for the last time during a tour of South Africa. After this tour, his health deteriorates and he dies in February 1981. July 1980 marks the 25th anniversary of Haley's "Rock Around the Clock" reaching No. 1 on the American singles charts.
    • The Sony Walkman goes on sale in the United States.
    • Kiss plays its first show with new drummer Eric Carr at the New York Palladium.
  • June 27John Lydon and Keith Levene of Public Image Ltd make an appearance on The Tomorrow Show with host Tom Snyder. In a famously uncomfortable interview, Lydon gives curt and vague responses to most of Snyder's questions.

July–September[]

October–December[]

  • October 9 – A riot breaks out at a Black Sabbath concert in Milwaukee after bassist Geezer Butler is hit in the head by a bottle and the band quits the stage.
  • October 26Paul Kantner of Jefferson Starship is rushed to hospital following a cerebral hemorrhage. He soon recovers without surgery, defying medical odds.
  • November 21
    • The Eagles' Don Henley is arrested when cocaine, Quaaludes, and marijuana are found in his hotel room after a 16-year-old prostitute has drug-related seizures. Henley is also subsequently charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor.[2][3][4] After pleading no contest, he was fined $2,500 and put on two years' probation.[5]
    • Iron Maiden play their first gig with new guitarist Adrian Smith in Uxbridge, London, England.
  • December 4
    • Duran Duran signs with EMI after finalizing its lineup and touring as a support act for Hazel O'Connor.
    • Led Zeppelin disbands following the death of drummer John Bonham.
  • December 7Darby Crash, leader of seminal L.A. punk band the Germs, dies of a heroin overdose in a suicide pact.
  • December 8John Lennon was shot to death outside his apartment building in New York City at 10:50 pm. Lennon's single, "(Just Like) Starting Over", subsequently becomes a number one hit in many countries, including the United States, United Kingdom and Australia.
  • December 14 – Over 100,000 mourners attend a public vigil for John Lennon in Central Park. 10 minutes of silence are observed at 2pm.
  • December 31 – The ninth annual New Year's Rockin' Eve special airs on ABC, with appearances by The Charlie Daniels Band, Billy Preston, Syreeta, Chuck Berry and Barry Manilow.

Also in 1980[]

  • Record labels established in 1980
  • Record labels disestablished in 1980
  • The single "Groovy Ghost Show" by Casper is one of the first recorded hip hop songs from Chicago.
  • The Hee Bee Gee Bees release a cutting parody of a Bee Gees' disco-style single. Though not a hit in the UK, it is a huge success elsewhere, especially in South Africa, and helps to encourage the Gibb brothers to diversify stylistically.
  • Phil Collins signs a contract with Atlantic Records to distribute his solo records in the US and in Europe outside the UK (on WEA label).
  • October, Iron Maiden replaces guitarist Dennis Stratton with Urchin guitarist Adrian Smith.

Bands formed[]

See Category:Musical groups established in 1980

Bands disbanded[]

See Category:Musical groups disestablished in 1980

Albums released[]

  1. Remain in Light Talking Heads
  2. Black Roots Sugar Minott

Singles released[]

  1. Atomic Blondie

Awards[]

Biggest hit singles[]

The following songs achieved the highest chart positions in the charts of 1980.

# Artist Title Year Country Chart entries
1 Pink Floyd Another Brick in the Wall (part 2) 1980 United Kingdom UK 1 – Dec 1979, US BB 1 – Feb 1980, Canada 1 – Jan 1980, Sweden (alt) 1 – Feb 1980, France 1 – Feb 1980, Austria 1 – Feb 1980, Switzerland 1 – Jan 1980, Norway 1 – Jan 1980, Germany 1 – Jan 1980, Éire 1 – Dec 1979, Poland 1 of all time, US CashBox 3 of 1980, Netherlands 3 – Dec 1979, Australia 4 of 1980, KROQ 6 of 1980, POP 7 of 1980, South Africa 8 of 1980, Germany 9 of the 1980s, Europe 11 of the 1970s, Italy 12 of 1980, US BB 15 of 1980, RYM 18 of 1979, TheQ 28, Virgin 39, Belgium 50 of all time, Scrobulate 51 of live, RIAA 296, Rolling Stone 375, Acclaimed 392, OzNet 594
2 Barbra Streisand Woman in Love 1980 United States UK 1 – Oct 1980, US BB 1 – Sep 1980, Netherlands 1 – Sep 1980, Sweden (alt) 1 – Oct 1980, Austria 1 – Dec 1980, Switzerland 1 – Oct 1980, Norway 1 – Nov 1980, Germany 1 – Jan 1981, Éire 1 – Oct 1980, Australia 1 for 2 weeks Sep 1981, South Africa 2 of 1980, Italy 3 of 1981, France 7 – Oct 1980, US CashBox 9 of 1980, Australia 21 of 1980, Germany 36 of the 1980s, RYM 157 of 1980
3 John Lennon (Just Like) Starting Over 1980 United Kingdom UK 1 – Nov 1980, US BB 1 – Nov 1980, Canada 1 – Nov 1980, Switzerland 1 – Dec 1980, Australia 1 for 4 weeks Dec 1981, Austria 2 – Feb 1981, Norway 2 – Dec 1980, Sweden (alt) 3 – Nov 1980, Germany 6 – Jan 1981, France 9 – Nov 1980, US BB 12 of 1980, Australia 18 of 1981, Italy 29 of 1981, RYM 32 of 1980, POP 49 of 1980, US CashBox 57 of 1980, Germany 298 of the 1980s, OzNet 683, Acclaimed 1637
4 Lipps Inc Funkytown 1980 United States US BB 1 – Apr 1980, Netherlands 1 – Apr 1980, Austria 1 – Jul 1980, Switzerland 1 – May 1980, Norway 1 – Jul 1980, Germany 1 – Jun 1980, UK 2 – May 1980, Sweden (alt) 2 – Jun 1980, US BB 4 of 1980, POP 5 of 1980, Scrobulate 7 of disco, Australia 9 of 1980, US CashBox 10 of 1980, Germany 14 of the 1980s, Italy 30 of 1980, RYM 73 of 1979, Acclaimed 520
5 Diana Ross Upside Down 1980 United States US BB 1 – Aug 1980, Sweden (alt) 1 – Aug 1980, France 1 – Aug 1980, Switzerland 1 – Aug 1980, Norway 1 – Aug 1980, New Zealand 1 for 3 weeks Oct 1980, Australia 1 for 4 weeks Aug 1981, UK 2 – Jul 1980, Netherlands 2 – Jul 1980, Austria 2 – Oct 1980, US CashBox 4 of 1980, Germany 4 – Sep 1980, Canada 8 – Sep 1980, Italy 8 of 1980, South Africa 11 of 1980, Australia 15 of 1980, POP 22 of 1980, US BB 30 of 1980, Scrobulate 42 of disco, RYM 83 of 1980, Germany 87 of the 1980s, Acclaimed 1364

US and UK #1 hit singles[]

(in chronological order)

US Top 40 Hits[]

  • Billboard Top 40 of 1980

Musical films[]

Births[]

Deaths[]

References[]

1.Jump up ^ Lazell, Barry (1997). Indie hits, 1980-1989: the complete U.K. independent charts (singles & albums). London: Cherry Red. ISBN 978-0-9517206-9-1. OCLC 38292499. 2.Jump up ^ Loder, Kurt (December 10, 1980). "More charges may be pending in Henley Arrest". Anchorage Daily News. p. 86. Retrieved October 18, 2012. 3.Jump up ^ "Eagle Arrested". Ottawa Citizen. November 25, 1980. p. 40. Retrieved October 18, 2012. 4.Jump up ^ McCormick, Neil (November 1, 2007). "The Eagles: we're lucky to be alive". The Telegraph. Retrieved October 18, 2002. 5.Jump up ^ "Eagles' star fined $2,500 on drug charge". Miami Herald. Associated Press. February 26, 1981. p. 15. Retrieved October 18, 2012. 6.Jump up ^ Thedeadrockstarsclub.com — accessed August 2010

  1. Lazell, Barry (1997). Indie hits, 1980-1989: the complete U.K. independent charts (singles & albums). London: Cherry Red. ISBN 978-0-9517206-9-1. OCLC 38292499.
  2. Loder, Kurt (December 10, 1980). "More charges may be pending in Henley Arrest". Anchorage Daily News. p. 86. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
  3. "Eagle Arrested". Ottawa Citizen. November 25, 1980. p. 40. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
  4. McCormick, Neil (November 1, 2007). "The Eagles: we're lucky to be alive". The Telegraph. Retrieved October 18, 2002.
  5. "Eagles' star fined $2,500 on drug charge". Miami Herald. Associated Press. February 26, 1981. p. 15. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
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