Best Hair Band ballads from the 1980s

One of the perquisites to being a great Eighties hair band was to mix in a power ballad between all the upbeat rock anthems.
Vince Neil lead singer for Motley Crue
Vince Neil lead singer for Motley Crue / Don Arnold/GettyImages
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No. 4: "Don't Know What You Got (Till It's Gone)" - Cinderella

Cinderella burst onto the scene in 1986, with their debut album Night Songs. They immediately hit it big with metal fans with terrific rock songs like "Shake Me" and "Somebody Save Me," but it was their power ballad "Nobody's Fool" that drove the audiences.

The band had a heavy blues influence in most of their songs, and "Nobody's Fool" was the epitome of this style. Tom Keifer's vocals were spot-on in this angsty ballad. It drove up the charts and finally landed as high as 13th on the charts. It was really hard not to have this one on this list.

Instead, the more romantic offering from Cinderella's next album gets the nod. "Don't Know What You've Got (Till It's Gone)" features Kiefer's brilliant vocals which illustrate the longing for loss, of messing up by not appreciating what you have. It is a beautiful song that almostmost everyone can relate to in one way or another. It was also piano-driven musically, rather than by the usual rock band guitar, showing the band had a softer side.

This beautiful ballad ended up being Cinderella's highest-charting song, highest-charting on the Billboard charts. While they did enjoy some modest success with later ballads like "Coming Home" and "Heartbreak Station," "Don't Know What You Got..." stands alone at the top of a pretty good archive of blue-based rock and roll.

No. 3: "Alone Again" - Dokken

Dokken will never be accused of being a ballad band, as they did very few of them. Known for heavy metal rock tunes like "Breakin' the Chains," "Into the Fire," and "Just Got Lucky," they did produce one fantastic one on their 1984 album Tooth and Nail.

"Alone Again" features Don Dokken's soulful voice and George Lynch's subtle riffs to produce a feeling of loss and loneliness familiar to almost everyone. The song talks about the inability to make things right, and how lost he feels. It

Dokken never had the commercial success a lot of bands in this era had, but rock and roll fans of the era know how good they were. Maybe a lack of that commercial success was because they didn't cave and fill their albums with always popular ballads. Their biggest success was probably "Dream Warriors," which was the theme of Nightmare on Elm Street 3.

This song may be a surprise to some, and maybe more unfamiliar to others, but it is a powerful ballad that deserves a high place in the Best Ballads of the Eighties list.