Top 17 outstanding soundtracks from 1980s movies revealed

How many of these 17 top movie soundtracks from the 1980s can you guess?
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1980s Movie soundtracks with sales of 3 to 5 million units

Urban Cowboy

John Travolta led the cast in this 1980 western romance which sparked a country music revival and pop-country crossover. The soundtrack included a mix of country based styles from the fiddles of “The Devil Went Down To Georgia” through to tracks by Linda Ronstadt, the Eagles, Kenny Rogers and many others. The double album racked up 3 million in sales.

Eddie And The Cruisers

This 1983 musical drama covered the story of a fictional rock band. In casting, the search went out for a band that was a cross between Dion and The Belmonts, with a flavour of Jim Morrison and The Doors, mixed with a New Jersey scent of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band.  It returned John Cafferty and Beaver Brown, with Cafferty writing the score for the film.

The movie flopped in cinemas, lasting three weeks before being pulled. Later cable TV showings gave it and the soundtrack album a boost. To the extent of 3 million sales and a higher ranking than many would have expected.


A 1988 comedy drama starring Bette Midler who also released the soundtrack of her many songs in it as an album. The most memorable song from Beaches was “Wind Beneath My Wings”, a huge hit and Grammy Award winning song for Midler. At 3 million sales Beaches is Midler’s biggest selling album. 


We’re well into the top ten now with the music from one of many Tom Cruise movies. Sales of 4m place the Cocktail soundtrack at number eight on the list. The film was highly successful in commercial terms. But hey, what’s that got to do with the music? The Beach Boys, Bobby McFerrin and others featured on the album can sip a Margarita and toast their success.

The Jazz Singer

Another movie and soundtrack proving you can’t please everyone. This Neil Diamond acting debut was both praised and panned. The soundtrack album stood alone and surpassed the film. With 5 million sales, it is his biggest selling album. Three singles were released from it, “Love On The Rocks”, “Hello Again” and “America” all were top ten hits.