They were totally rad in the 1980s with their, like, totally awesome style and cool sounds. Here are a few artists who made you want your MTV. See what they are up to now.

Bette Midler

Known by a heavenly nickname thanks to her debut album, Bette Midler has become a legend of the stage and screen for both her acting and vocal talents.

Later this fall, the diva will be headlining the opening of a museum with a famous comedian.


The Material Girl wasn't always famous (what name was she born with?). She had a not-so-glamorous job when the moved to New York City. What was her nickname growing up? She eventually hit it big in the '80s with some huge hits.

Now she can be seen on the streets of New York City directing her newest film project.


Is Blondie this woman or a band? Yes. Their new-wave punk style also introduced mainstream America to this style. Listen for it on this No. 1 hit.

The band broke up in '82 because of problems. The band reunited in 1996 and kept going. They entered the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in '06, despite a little skirmish.
Blondie paired with another iconic woman rocker for a tour last year. Debbie Harry, 65, is cooking up something for fall.


Does"Whip It" ring a bell? How about a rock classic transformed into art rock? Watch "Devo-Satisfaction."
Devo was short for a pseudo-science theory that motivated these disillusioned Kent State students to don red "energy domes" (what?) and "radiation suits" (these, for example).

Some rock music icons admired Devo. The band was a pioneer for a young TV network. Devo peaked in the early '80s.

Since then band members have made music for kids' shows (here's one). They sued McDonald's (over a toy) and laid down new tunes for video games. Here's a popular one.
Now they're back, performing live (watch 'em) and producing this.

The Cars

Watch some of the hits: "Shake It Up" | "Since You're Gone" | "Hello Again"

They broke up in 1988. Ric Ocasek, 61, has been a solo artist and produced for big rock names. He married a younger supermodel (here are her pictures) in 1989 and they're still together. She was in this video.

Two members teamed with a rock icon to become The New Cars. Another dropped out of sight to run this business. A key vocalist and bassist died (who?). Ocasek's thoughts on a reunion? Forget it.

Duran Duran

What made Duran Duran so hot? Their looks? Their slick videos?
Their first video hit was toned down by MTV. Watch it. They ruled the '80s pop/alt-rock/new wave scene.
Watch some of the hits: "'Rio" | "Hungry Like a Wolf" | "The Reflex"
After a James Bond theme song, the original five didn't perform for 18 years. Then came a reunion tour and a 2004 single (watch it) played for the crew of the space shuttle. Their last new album was in 2007. The band's working on a 2011 album.

Talking Heads

Combine David Byrne, Tina Weymouth, Chris Frantz and Jerry Harrison, and you get '80s art rock/new wave music to dance to.
Watch some of the hits: "Burning Down the House" | "Take Me to The River" | "Once in a Lifetime"

Their last tour was in 1983, their last album was produced in 1988, and they broke up 1991. Last performance? Here, in 2002.
Weymouth and Frantz (married for 30-plus years) created Tom Tom Club (here are some videos).

Guitarist Jerry Harrison put out solo albums, produced for semi-big bands and co-founded a web resource.
David Byrne has had solo songs (such as "She's Mad"), movie scores (watch clips) and more. Byrne and Brian Eno put out an '08 album, with a popular single.


Four University of Georgia students -- Michael Stipe, Peter Buck, Mike Mills and Bill Berry -- got together and changed rock. The name was randomly picked from a dictionary. (Was it this?)
Here's a video clip of an early performance, on Letterman's show. Watch some of the hits:
"Fall on Me" | "The One I Love" | "Stand"
They rolled through the 1990s with more hits, such as "Losing My Religion" and "Man on the Moon."
Ten years later, they launched a 2005 tour and continued making music. Their last album was in 2008, but a new album is reportedly in the works.

Beastie Boys

Whatever happened to the Beastie Boys? Nothing. They're still rapping and recording.
The hip-hop band from Brooklyn -- Adam "MCA" Yauch, Adam "Ad-Rock" Horovitz, Michael "Mike D" Diamond and Michael "Mix Master Mike" Schwartz -- started punk, but switched styles.

Watch some of the hits: "Brass Monkey" | "(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (to Party!)" | "No Sleep 'til Brooklyn"
The hits kept coming in the 1990s, including "Intergalactic."
The band keeps going and gathering Grammies. MCA (Yauch) battled a life-threatening illness in 2009. Ad-Rock (Horovitz) is 43 and married to a female punk-band member. Mike D (Diamond), 44, sometimes morphs into Country Mike.


They started as the Farriss brothers (because three of them were) but became INXS in 1979. The name was inspired by another band.
Lead singer Michael Hutchence was the hunky star (check out pictures of him). A marketing honcho suggested they take an unlikely musical path, but they stayed with rock and hit it big in '84.
Watch some of the hits: "Original Sin" | "What You Need" | "Need You Tonight"
The band's latest claim to fame was a reality show to pick a new lead singer in 2005. The winner? Watch a clip.
This year, INXS performed at a chilly venue - their first live show in two years.

Chaka Khan

She may be remembered for the rap riff in this: "I Feel For You" (you'll remember it) - but Chaka Khan (not her real name) racked up '80s hits.
Watch some of the hits: "I'm Every Woman" | "What Cha' Gonna Do for Me" | "Through the Fire"
By the end of the '80s, her success slipped (she did sing on this Steve Winwood hit - watch the clip).
She moved to London in 1990 with her two kids and put out albums. Khan took to the stage in 1995 and wrote a memoir in 2003. She still tours and is basking in the rewards for this hit album from 2007.

Tears for Fears

Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith joined forces in the early 1980s and used a then-trendy brand of therapy (a scream may help you remember) as the inspiration for their band's name, Tears for Fears. Their first hits started in 1982 with "Mad World" (here are clips).

Watch some of the hits: "Shout" | "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" | "Head over Heels"

"Sowing the Seeds of Love" was their last hit, in 1989.

After a nasty spat, the two split in '91. In 2000, they reconciled, and the 2004 album, "Everybody Loves a Happy Ending," resulted.
Orzaval, 48, produces other artists and has been married since 1982. Smith is 49, lives in L.A., a self-pronounced tech geek. They joined with another hot '80s band (watch clips) before starting their own tour this spring.

Terence Trent D'Arby

Before he was D'Arby, he was Terence Trent Howard. Now he has a name you probably don't know - or why he changed it. (We do.)
His debut solo album in 1987 (it has a long title) was a huge hit. In its first three days, 11 million copies were sold.
Watch some of the hits: "Wishing Well" | "If You Let Me Stay" | "Sign Your Name"

He won a Grammy, then virtually disappeared from U.S. charts, despite seven more albums.
D'Arby is performing mostly in Europe. He has lived in this Italian city for years and says he created a new style of music called this that will appear on a 10th album. He performed three songs on the soundtrack of a 2007 blockbuster movie.

Tina Turner

The world's most successful woman rocker has sold lots of records (they're still coming) and her career has spanned five decades. Tina Turner was a star in the 1970s, with hits like this classic - watch the clip. But the '80s was her decade.
Watch some of the hits: "What's Love Got to Do with It?" | "Private Dancer" | "We Don't Need Another Hero"
Turner released "I Don't Wanna Fight" in 1993, then two more studio albums. This was her last live tour?
Turner has lived in another country since '94 with this man. They've been together since 1985 - and he's younger. (How much?)
How old is Tina? Watch this 2008 performance first.

David Bowie

In the '80s, Bowie was everywhere - in films (as a Biblical bad guy), on soundtracks, on Broadway (in this).
Watch some of the hits: "Let's Dance" | "China Girl" | "Modern Love"
Bowie played through the 1990s and beyond, but never topped his 1980s success.
This was his last studio album - in 2003. On tour, something happened to slow him down. What was it?

He married a supermodel (here are pictures) in 1992, and today they live in New York. Bowie will release this in September. And you can stop arguing about how to pronounce his last name.

Phil Collins

Collins' work in the '80s produced more top-40 hits than any others. Watch some of the hits:
"In the Air Tonight" | "Take a Look at Me Now" | "Sussudio"
Record sales dropped in the 1990s, and he left Genesis in '96. He announced his last tour in 2003, but Genesis reunited briefly in 2007.
Collins has been in movies and TV shows and even produced music for a violent video game.
At 59, he has hearing loss, and last year he had surgery for a neck problem that hinders his drumming. Genesis got a well-deserved honor this year. Watch it.
Going Back, an album of Motown covers, drops in September. You can watch a bit of it now, though.

Billy Idol

The sneer, spiky white hair and angry lyrics made Billy Idol (although that wasn't his real name) a star. He was darling of MTV in the early '80s -- check out pictures to refresh your memory.
Watch some of the hits: "Rebel Yell" | "Cradle of Love" | "Mony Mony"
The music stopped in 1990 -- what happened? He missed a juicy acting gig job as a result. What film?
In 1994, he had two drug overdoses, but he went to rehab and said he's cleaned up. He appeared as himself in an Adam Sandler comedy, and you can hear two of his songs on video games.
Four years ago, he did something odd. Two years ago, he went on a world tour with a hard-rocking '80s group. Who? He's 55 and touring now. Here's where you can find him.

George Michael

Slick, sexy, stylish George Michael elicited many teenage screams in the '80s. We bet you can't even pronounce his real name. He has sold more than 100 million records and topped the charts eight times.
Before he went solo, Michael was half of a hip duo - remember their name? They had hits, too -- here's a clip of one and some video of another, "Freedom."
They split in '86 and Michael filled the late '80s with solo hits.
Watch some of the hits: "Faith" | "Father Figure" | "Careless Whisper"
He released covers and greatest hits in the late '90s, but this 2004 studio album was a hit.
At 47, he recently finished the Australian leg of a world tour. Drugs and other things have led to multiple arrests over the years. What did he do? He was also arrested in early July: Read about it.

Huey Lewis and the News

They made the '80s fun: a rock/soul/pop/blues band from California that churned out great MTV videos, lots of tours and hit after hit. Five of their albums hit the Billboard top 30.
The band's previous name got them into trouble with a credit card company. (What was it?)

Watch some of the hits: "The Power of Love" | "The Heart of Rock & Roll" | "Heart and Soul"
The makeup of the band has changed over the years. In 2006, they toured with a famous band from the '70s. Two years ago, the band created the theme song to a funny film starring Seth Rogan. Care to guess?
They've just finished a new record (no word on launch date) and started a summer tour. Want details?


Run-DMC's first four albums crossed musical and generational divides.
The group: Joseph "Rev Run" Simmons, Darryl "DMC" McDaniels and the late Jason "Jam Master Jay" Mizell. They were the first rap act to make this cover . . . climb this chart . . . get one of these nominations . . . perform on this TV show.
Watch some of the hits: "My Adidas" | "King of Rock" | "Walk This Way"
Problems (such as?) began to wear on the group. They lost one of their members in a violent crime in 2002. Soon after, they disbanded.
They were the second hip-hop group to reach this hall in 2009. Run's got a reality show. The group plans a boxed set of '80s classics for September, and they're touring again.

The Pointer Sisters

Sisters June, Ruth, Bonnie and Anita Pointer started making hits in the 1970s, but, they hit their stride in the '80s.
Watch some of the hits: "I'm So Excited" | "Jump (For My Love)" | "Neutron Dance"
They'd won Grammies, but things slowed in the mid-1980s. In the '90s they made fewer appearances. There was a holiday hit in 2005 (watch clips).

Their tunes have been sampled and covered, and they're still big in Europe. June died in 2006. The three remaining siblings reunited in 2009. A daughter -- who was it? -- stepped in for June, then a granddaughter came aboard. They're still touring, too. Check out where.


Tiffany Renee Darwish started out singing country music and was discovered by a country legend. She was runner-up on a celebrity search show in 1985. She toured unusual venues and things started hopping. Where did she perform?

Watch some of the hits: "I Think We're Alone Now" | "Could've Been" | "All This Time"
She voiced a space-age cartoon teen in a 1990 movie.
Despite legal battles with her mother, marriage and divorce, Tiffany kept turning out albums. In 2007, she started climbing dance charts again - listen to clips.
She's 38, was on this heavy TV show and a rough reality show - did you see it? Tiffany made her film debut at Cannes last year in "Necrosis." Tiffany and pop nemesis Debbie Gibson will face off in a 2011 sci-fi TV flick. Set the TiVo.

Debbie Gibson

The other teen queen of the '80s, Gibson started at 16, although at 8 she sang in a prestigious place. Where?
Watch some of the hits: "Only In My Dreams" | "Shake Your Love" | "Foolish Beat"
Songs started sliding down the charts in the '90s, so she moved to theater, performing on Broadway in this classic story, and in a London production of "Grease" - here's a clip.
Gibson has been plagued by stalkers. Despite that, she has continued playing in small theater venues, been a judge on a one-season kid-talent search (watch a clip) and competed on a reality TV skating competition.

New Kids on the Block

A Boston teen responded to a 1984 band casting call. He asked his friends and brother to join. The result: domination of the pop charts in the late '80s and early '90s, selling millions of records. (How many?)
Donnie Wahlberg, Danny Wood, Joey McIntyre, Jordan Knight and brother Jonathan were the Kids.
Watch some of the hits: "Please Don't Go Girl" | "You Got It (The Right Stuff)" | "Hangin' Tough"
In 1991, they topped an exclusive list. But record sales slumped, and they split in 1994.
Joey McIntyre stayed in the public eye with solos and on TV. Watch him dance.
Donnie Wahlberg turned to the big screen and scared us in this hit movie. Danny Wood became an executive. The Jordan brothers kept singing, and Knight turned to this work.
After 13 years, they reunited and produced "The Block." Their 2008 tour had an outrageous singer opening for them.

New Edition

This Boston-born, all-boy band aimed to be the Jackson 5 of the '80s. In 1983, the band was Ralph Tresvant, Bobby Brown, Michael Bivins, Ronnie DeVoe and Ricky Bell.
Watch some of the hits: "Candy Girl" | "Cool It Now" | "Mr. Telephone Man"
Bobby Brown left for a solo career in '86. His replacement was Johnny Gill, who helped the group get more hits in 1989. The band split up. The remaining three members became Bell Biv DeVoe.
In 1996, a new album created a hit single, "Hit Me Off" (watch the video). A tour followed, but things didn't go well. Another reunion produced their last studio album, "One Love," in 2004.
Two splinter groups from New Edition still record and tour some: Bell Biv Devoe and Heads of State, with Brown, Tresvant and Gill.

Kool and The Gang

Kool & The Gang were cool long before the '80s. Brothers Robert (Kool) and Ronald Bell gathered friends for a band, and from the start in 1964 they were hits.
Watch some of the hits: "Celebration" | "Get Down On It" | "Joanna"
Some groups who used Kool sounds for samples include a rap pair - one of whom is now Hollywood's top celebrity (one guess!). Their song "N.T." was sampled by other bands - such as this solo artist and a hip-hop group with a jazzy sound.
Four of the original Kool & The Gang members are still touring. Last year they performed in this small country's capital, and they played in this ancient city earlier this year.

Ashford and Simpson

He's Nickolas Ashford, and she's Valerie Simpson, and they started recording in the late '70s and early '80s, and had several R&B hits.
Watch some of the hits: "Solid" | "High Rise" | "Street Corner"
Simpson has done a bit of this, which you may have heard and didn't know it.
The pair, married for 36 years, have DJ'd on a top New York station. (What is it?) they remixed one of their biggest hit in homage to a certain politician.

Ashford, 68, and Simpson, 63, were inducted into the Songwriters' Hall of Fame in 2002. They released a DVD, "The Real Thing," last year.

Hall and Oates

Daryl Hall and John Oates had a long string of hits that blended rock, soul and smooth, smart lyrics.
They met under unusual circumstances. (Here are details.)
Their first three albums went nowhere, but their fourth album started to roll. Why was it called the Silver Album?
Watch some of the hits: "Maneater" | "I Can't Go for That (No Can Do)" | "Out of Touch"
The duo didn't break up as much as fade after 1990, although they continued to put out albums (solo as well). They received a top musical accolade in 2004 - here are details.
Hall, 63, and Oates, 61, have popped up on some TV shows - on this comedy/news show, and this dancing hit.


The DeBarge family of Michigan brought their musical genes to play during the 1980s with a series of hit songs on the Motown label. Four brothers and a sister (do you remember their names?) hoped to follow in the footsteps of another famous Motown family act.

Watch some of the hits: "I Like It" | "Rhythm of the Night" | "All This Love"

Things got divisive when El DeBarge started getting promotion as the star. "Mama" DeBarge had something to say about it.

By the end of the '80s, El and Bunny left. Some family members (who?) spent time in prison. Bobby died of AIDS in 1995, at 39.

One DeBarge brother is getting attention for a new album coming soon, the first in 16 years.

Billy Ocean

Billy Ocean, born in Trinidad and raised in Great Britain, is that country's most successful black recording star. He has sold an amazing number of records. (How many?)
Watch some of the hits: "Caribbean Queen" | "Suddenly" | "Get Outta My Dreams, Get Into My Car"
By 1993, the hits slipped away. He took a break to spend time with family, and he has assumed a very different look than when he first hit the charts. Here are pictures.
He received a special honor in 2002 - here's what happened.
He returned to performing in 2007 and started his first British tour in a long time - this long. He has anew album (this is the name) that was released this year.