These Are the 20 Best Music Videos of 1984

Bruce Springsteen, Madonna and Prince represent, but who’s the boss?


1984 was a breakout year for the music video. The form was celebrated with the first MTV Video Music Awards, and credited with the revival of a record industry that had died with disco. Plus, it gave us Bruce Springsteen doing the Carlton — before the move was invented!

If the music video was in peak form, then that’s because the day’s pop stars were, too. Outside of Michael Jackson, the icon who’d closed 1983 with the epic, “Thriller,” but did not drop any new clips in 1984, everyone who was anyone was making sweet video music: Madonna, Prince, Queen, U2, Duran Duran and, of course, the dance-master Springsteen.

Return with us now to a magical time.

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