HERC's Favorite Albums of 1982

Inspired by the the lists compiled by his good buddies Mark S. and Martin M., HERC is putting his Favorite Albums of 1982 out there for discussion.  HERC's list is solely comprised of albums he owns either as CDs or as original vinyl albums or, more often than not, in both formats as proof that 1982 was the greatest year in music ever. 

These three albums do NOT appear on HERC's Favorite Albums of 1982

This list supersedes all previous lists of HERC's Favorite Albums of 1982. Some days Prince's 1999 is HERC's favorite album of 1982 and on other days The Clash's Combat Rock takes the title.  All comers were welcome as long as they had a release date of 1982: studio albums, live albums, EPs, soundtracks, compilations, imports, even more than one album per artist!   (Singles, including the 12" kind, will be covered in a future post.) Only the Top 26 Albums are ranked and each is a HERC favorite through and through and are almost always listened to from start to finish as great albums should be.

First up are the 74 runners-up, HERC's Favorite Albums of 1982 that did not make the Top 26.  Some of the albums only have one song that gets played (like Led Zeppelin's odds and ends collection, CODA) while most of them get played in their entirety:

8th Wonder - Sugarhill Gang
Always On My Mind - Willie Nelson
American Fool - John Cougar
American Worker - The Bus Boys
Asia - Asia
Avalon - Roxy Music
Bad To The Bone - George Thorogood & the Destroyers
Boomerang - Shoes
Built for Speed - Stray Cats
Business as Usual - Men at Work
CODA - Led Zeppelin
Computer Games - George Clinton
East Of Eden's Gate - Billy Thorpe
Emotions in Motion - Billy Squier
English Settlement - XTC
Eye in the Sky - Alan Parsons Project
Eye of the Tiger - Survivor
Forever Now - The Psychedelic Furs
Get Closer - Linda Ronstadt
Get Nervous - Pat Benatar
Good Clean Fun - Bonnie Hayes with The Wild Combo
Grease 2
H2O - Hall and Oates
Heaven 17 - Heaven 17
Hello I Must Be Going - Phil Collins
I Can't Stand Still - Don Henley
I Won't Be Home Tonight - Tony Carey
If That's What It Takes - Michael McDonald
Ignition - John Waite
It's Hard - The Who
Just Another Day in Paradise - Bertie Higgins
Lionel Richie - Lionel Richie
Livin’ In the New Wave - André Cymone
Love and Dancing - The League Unlimited Orchestra
Love Over Gold - Dire Straits
Love Will Turn You Around - Kenny Rogers
Marshall Crenshaw - Marshall Crenshaw
Midnight Love - Marvin Gaye
Mirage - Fleetwood Mac
Mountain Music - Alabama
N.U. R.O.C.K. - various artists [K-Tel]
No Fun Aloud - Glenn Frey
Non Stop Ecstatic Dancing - Soft Cell
One Down - Material
Pictures At Eleven - Robert Plant
Pleasure Victim - Berlin
Records - Foreigner
Rhythm of Youth - Men Without Hats
Security aka Peter Gabriel - Peter Gabriel
Shuttered Room - The Fixx
Signals - Rush
So Excited! - the Pointer Sisters
Special Forces - .38 Special
Spys - Spys
Stevie Wonder's Original Musiquarium I - Stevie Wonder
Straight Between The Eyes - Rainbow
Success Hasn't Spoiled Me Yet - Rick Springfield
Talking Back to the Night - Steve Winwood
The Beat - various artists [K-Tel]
The Distance - Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band
The Ever Popular Tortured Artist Effect - Todd Rundgren
The Gift - The Jam
The Message - Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five
The Nylon Curtain - Billy Joel
The Party's Over - Talk Talk
The Singles: The First Ten Years - ABBA
Three Lock Box - Sammy Hagar
Thriller - Michael Jackson
Too-Rye-Ay - Dexy's Midnight Runners
Toto IV - Toto
Utopia - Utopia
Vanity 6 - Vanity 6
What Time Is It? - The Time
Zapp II - Zapp

Before we get to the Top 26, here are the lovely MRS. HERC's Favorite Albums of 1982, in no particular order. (HERC knows for a fact that her favorite album from 1982 and one of her favorite albums of all-time is the first one she listed):

Eye in the Sky - Alan Parsons Project
Toto IV - Toto
The Nylon Curtain - Billy Joel
Thriller - Michael Jackson
Chicago 16 - Chicago
Success Hasn't Spoiled Me Yet - Rick Springfield
H2O - Hall and Oates
Business as Usual - Men at Work
Stevie Wonder's Original Musiquarium I - Stevie Wonder
Sunshine Dream - The Beach Boys


Here's HERC's Top 26 presented countdown style (click on album title to listen in Spotify):

Gap Band IV - Gap Band

Hot Space - Queen

Oh, No! It's Devo - Devo

Primitive Man - Icehouse

Long After Dark - Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

All Four One - The Motels

The Kids from "Fame" - The Kids From "Fame"

Spring Session M - Missing Persons

Screaming For Vengeance - Judas Priest

Night and Day - Joe Jackson

Upstairs at Eric's - Yaz

The Golden Age of Wireless - Thomas Dolby

Shabooh Shoobah - INXS

Vacation - The Go-Go's

Rio - Duran Duran

The Nightfly - Donald Fagen

Blackout - Scorpions

A Flock of Seagulls - A Flock Of Seagulls

Diver Down - Van Halen

Fast Times At Ridgemont High soundtrack

Kissing to be Clever - Culture Club

New Gold Dream (81-82-83-84) - Simple Minds

Combat Rock - The Clash

1999 - Prince

The Lexicon of Love - ABC

Friend or Foe - Adam Ant


Probably what his ballot would have looked like if HERC had been one of the "record 6825 responses - more than double the 2812 ballots 1981's survey attracted".


  1. Herc, very interesting that the requirement you are using is that the list had to be stuff you owned in one format or another. While my list certainly will be heavily influenced by stuff I owned on vinyl, some things out of my 2012 journey through 1982 did make it into my final cut of 100.

    Oh, and my list is not going to allow greatest hits packages (sorry, Stevie Wonder) or live albums. I am going with pure 1982 music if at all possible.

    I should have my list ready to hit my blog within a week. I think a number of my choices will surprise you, just as a number of your choices surprised me. ;)

  2. To clarify, I do own all of the albums on my list now. I may not have purchased them in 1982 or even the Eighties but they are on my shelf now.

    That's the maddening beauty of it - your list, your rules, your way. Establishing rules and boundaries narrows your choices, giving you a smaller pool from which to choose.

    Whether subsconciously or not, I'm noticing that a lot of singles from albums that didn't make the Favorite Albums List are popping up on my Favorite Singles of 1982 list which has the following criteria: had to be released as a single (no album cuts) or had to chart between Jan 9, 1982 and Dec 25, 1982 which is going to allow some songs from 1981 to seep onto the list. (Looking at Cash Box charts to see if there are songs that missed Billboard's charts. Don't have the Record World books yet.)

    If you don't have access to Whitburn's Hot 100 Charts - The Eighties, Google Books has what looks like the entire year's run of the magazine so you can delve into all the charts not just the Hot 100. Unless being on Hot 100 is one of your criteria...

    We like what we like and no one can change that - our favorites are deep-rooted and often linked to powerful memories. The best we can hope for is to discover something we have never heard before (or hear it anew with years of life experience under our belts) and find a new favorite.

  3. Believe it or not, your list had some albums I missed first go round for my 1982 listen. So I already did pick up new things. There are a couple favorites of mine I was happy to see on your list too.

    I could never do the singles thing. Too hard. But I look forward to what you come up with. I always do.