1986 in music

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This is a list of notable events in music that took place in the year 1986.

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Events[edit]

January–June[edit]

June–December[edit]

Also in 1986[edit]

Bands formed[edit]

Bands disbanded[edit]

Albums released[edit]

January – March[edit]

Date Album Artist Notes
J
A
N
U
A
R
Y
13 Premonition Peter Frampton -
18 Made to Be Broken Soul Asylum -
27 Does Humor Belong in Music? Frank Zappa Live
28 Seventh Star Black Sabbath -
Balance of Power Electric Light Orchestra Germany
Different Light The Bangles US
Gap Band 8 The Gap Band -
Heyday The Church -
War Games Grave Digger -
Tuff Enuff The Fabulous Thunderbirds -
F
E
B
R
U
A
R
Y
3 Album Public Image Ltd. -
Mean Business The Firm -
6 The Blind Leading the Naked Violent Femmes -
10 Live in New York City John Lennon Live 1972
13 Precious Moments Jermaine Jackson -
14 The Big Prize Honeymoon Suite -
The Knife Feels Like Justice Brian Setzer -
17 Fatal Portrait King Diamond -
18 Lives in the Balance Jackson Browne -
20 The Colour of Spring Talk Talk -
21 King of America Elvis Costello -
22 The Ultimate Sin Ozzy Osbourne -
24 Master of Puppets Metallica -
28 Pretty In Pink Various Artists Soundtrack
Marilyn Martin Marilyn Martin -
The Thin Red Line Glass Tiger -
M
A
R
C
H
4 Control Janet Jackson -
14 Rrröööaaarrr Voivod -
17 Black Celebration Depeche Mode -
19 Who's Got the 10½? Black Flag -
24 Dirty Work The Rolling Stones -
5150 Van Halen -
Please Pet Shop Boys -
25 Big World Joe Jackson Live
26 Live to Tell Madonna -
27 Innocent Eyes Graham Nash -
30 Beyond the Gates Possessed -
31 From Luxury to Heartache Culture Club -
Parade Prince and the Revolution -
Turbo Judas Priest -
Born Sandy Devotional The Triffids -
Candy Apple Grey Hüsker Dü -
Cocker Joe Cocker -
Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc. Dwight Yoakam -
Little Miss Dangerous Ted Nugent -
9½ Weeks Various Artists Soundtrack
The Pack Is Back Raven -
Rapture Anita Baker -
Finyl Vinyl Rainbow Live + B-Side

April – June[edit]

Date Album Artist Notes
A
P
R
I
L
1 Book of Love Book of Love Debut album
New Kids on the Block New Kids on the Block -
7 Absolute Beginners Various Artists Soundtrack
Animal Magic The Blow Monkeys -
14 Victorialand Cocteau Twins -
15 Love Zone Billy Ocean -
18 Rembrandt Pussyhorse Butthole Surfers -
21 Russian Roulette Accept -
Tinderbox Siouxsie and the Banshees -
30 The Final Frontier Keel -
Cendres de Lune Mylène Farmer -
Change of Address Krokus -
Big & Beautiful Fat Boys -
Classics Live! Aerosmith Live
GTR GTR -
Home of the Brave Laurie Anderson Soundtrack
In Visible Silence Art of Noise -
Like a Rock Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band -
Mistrial Lou Reed -
Secret Dreams and Forbidden Fire Bonnie Tyler -
Strength in Numbers 38 Special -
M
A
Y
1 Sleight of Hand Joan Armatrading -
5 Home and Abroad The Style Council Live
6 Standing on a Beach The Cure Compilation
7 Top Gun Various Artists Soundtrack
16 Look What the Cat Dragged In Poison -
19 So Peter Gabriel -
20 Who Made Who AC/DC Soundtrack
27 Emotional Jeffrey Osborne -
Raised on Radio Journey -
24 Headed for the Future Neil Diamond -
26 Home of the Brave Laurie Anderson Soundtrack
29 Into the Light Chris de Burgh -
30 Animal Boy The Ramones -
Emerson, Lake & Powell Emerson, Lake & Powell -
EVOL Sonic Youth -
Fight for the Rock Savatage -
The Final Countdown Europe -
Frontal Assault Angel Witch -
Moonlight Shadows The Shadows -
The Other Side of Life The Moody Blues -
Poolside Nu Shooz -
Truthdare Doubledare Bronski Beat -
J
U
N
E
2 A Kind of Magic Queen -
The Way It Is Bruce Hornsby & the Range -
Wonderland Erasure -
3 Belinda Belinda Carlisle -
5 Afternoons in Utopia Alphaville -
6 Storms of Life Randy Travis -
9 Invisible Touch Genesis -
10 Epicus Doomicus Metallicus Candlemass -
13 Criminal Tango Manfred Mann's Earth Band -
16 The Queen Is Dead The Smiths -
23 Every Beat of My Heart Rod Stewart
24 Time's Incinerator Soul Asylum -
27 Destiny Chaka Khan -
Rage for Order Queensrÿche -
30 The Seer Big Country -
True Blue Madonna -
The Twelve Inch Mixes Spandau Ballet Compilation
As Close As You Think Kevin Ayers -
Back in the High Life Steve Winwood -
Bring On the Night Sting Live
Crowded House Crowded House -
Daring Adventures Richard Thompson -
Emerald City Teena Marie -
Gift The Sisterhood -
Intermission Dio Live
Night Songs Cinderella -
Solitude/Solitaire Peter Cetera -
Then & Now... The Best of The Monkees The Monkees Compilation + 3 new recordings
Tom Cochrane & Red Rider Red Rider -

July – September[edit]

Date Album Artist Notes
J
U
L
Y
1 Music from the Edge of Heaven Wham! US
2 Lyle Lovett Lyle Lovett -
6 QR III Quiet Riot -
7 The Dark Metal Church -
Eat 'Em and Smile David Lee Roth -
Oh, My God! (album) Doug E. Fresh - Debut
The Final Wham! -
Made in U.S.A. The Beach Boys -
True Confessions Bananarama -
8 Twitch Ministry -
9 The Bridge Billy Joel -
12 Revenge Eurythmics -
14 Knocked Out Loaded Bob Dylan -
15 Dancing on the Ceiling Lionel Richie -
Through the Barricades Spandau Ballet -
18 Raising Hell Run-D.M.C. -
21 Landing on Water Neil Young -
22 The Collection Amy Grant Compilation
25 Lightning Strikes Loudness -
2 Live Crew Is What We Are 2 Live Crew -
28 Landing on Water Neil Young -
Lifes Rich Pageant R.E.M. -
Rat in the Kitchen UB40 -
54–40 54-40
East of Midnight Gordon Lightfoot
Flaunt It Sigue Sigue Sputnik
Montana Cafe Hank Williams, Jr.
No Guru, No Method, No Teacher Van Morrison -
A
U
G
U
S
T
2 Diesel and Dust Midnight Oil
Vinnie Vincent Invasion Vinnie Vincent Invasion
9 Orgasmatron Motörhead
12 Graceland Paul Simon
18 ABBA Live ABBA Live
Kicking Against the Pricks Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds -
Silk and Steel Five Star -
Slippery When Wet Bon Jovi -
True as Steel Warlock -
22 Press to Play Paul McCartney -
23 Now That's What I Call Music 7 Various Artists -
Camper Van Beethoven Camper Van Beethoven -
Can't Hold Back Eddie Money -
Duotones Kenny G -
Fahrenheit Toto -
High Priest of Love Zodiac Mindwarp EP
In the Pines The Triffids -
In the Army Now Status Quo -
Shot in the Dark Great White -
S
E
P
T
E
M
B
E
R
1 Press to Play Paul McCartney -
Break Every Rule Tina Turner -
The Sport of Kings Triumph -
5 Mind: The Perpetual Intercourse Skinny Puppy -
8 Bouncing off the Satellites The B-52's -
Crash The Human League -
10 The Man Bill Drummond -
15 Blood and Chocolate Elvis Costello and the Attractions -
Express Love and Rockets -
This Side of Paradise Ric Ocasek -
True Colors Cyndi Lauper -
19 Give Me the Reason Luther Vandross -
20 Fore! Huey Lewis and the News -
Filigree & Shadow This Mortal Coil -
Throwing Muses Throwing Muses -
23 Third Stage Boston -
26 Vigilante Magnum -
29 Bend Sinister The Fall -
Brotherhood New Order -
Chicago 18 Chicago -
Somewhere in Time Iron Maiden -
The Pacific Age Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark -
Another View The Velvet Underground Outtakes compilation
Atomizer Big Black -
The Best of 10 Years - 32 Superhits Boney M. UK
Better Than Heaven Stacey Q -
Blind Before I Stop Meat Loaf -
Cinema Nazareth -
Constrictor Alice Cooper -
Dancing Undercover Ratt -
Dangerous Games Alcatrazz -
Eye of the Zombie John Fogerty -
Fields of Fire Corey Hart -
Greetings from Timbuk 3 Timbuk3 -
Menace to Society Lizzy Borden -
Rock the Nations Saxon -
Talking with the Taxman about Poetry Billy Bragg -
Trilogy Yngwie Malmsteen -
Word Up! Cameo -

October – December[edit]

Date Album Artist Notes
O
C
T
O
B
E
R
6 Scoundrel Days a-ha -
7 Reign In Blood Slayer -
True Stories Talking Heads -
13 Count Three & Pray Berlin -
14 Mosaic Wang Chung -
17 Better Than Heaven Stacy Q -
20 Liverpool Frankie Goes To Hollywood -
21 Polka Party! "Weird Al" Yankovic -
23 Blah Blah Blah Iggy Pop -
24 To Hell with the Devil Stryper -
Radio Musicola Nik Kershaw -
25 One to One Howard Jones -
25 Back in Black (Whodini album) Whodini -
27 Skylarking XTC -
31 Pearls of Passion Roxette - Canada,Sweden Only Release
Alive & Screamin' Krokus Live
The Doctor Cheap Trick -
Dreamtime The Stranglers -
Fame and Fortune Bad Company -
Greetings from Timbuk 3 Timbuk 3 -
Nasty Nasty Black 'N Blue -
No. 10, Upping St. Big Audio Dynamite -
Power Kansas -
Repossessed Kris Kristofferson -
Shake You Down Gregory Abbott -
United Commodores -
Whiplash Smile Billy Idol -
N
O
V
E
M
B
E
R
3 Another Step Kim Wilde -
Forever Kool & the Gang -
Menlove Ave John Lennon -
Your Funeral, My Trial Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds -
4 Get Close The Pretenders -
Peace Sells... But Who's Buying? Megadeth -
"Raw, Uncut, and X-Rated" Too Short -
They Might Be Giants They Might Be Giants -
8 Inside the Electric Circus W.A.S.P. -
9 Stand Tall Killer Dwarfs -
10 Live/1975–85 Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band Live Box Set
Morbid Visions Sepultura -
The Whole Story Kate Bush Compilation
12 Whispering Jack John Farnham Australia
14 Awaken the Guardian Fates Warning -
15 Jazz from Hell Frank Zappa -
Live Alive Stevie Ray Vaughan Live
17 Think Visual The Kinks -
18 Notorious Duran Duran -
24 August Eric Clapton -
The Circle & The Square Red Box -
Live Chronicles Hawkwind Live
Between Two Fires Paul Young -
Brighter Than a Thousand Suns Killing Joke -
Deep in the Heart of Nowhere Bob Geldof -
Famous Blue Raincoat Jennifer Warnes Canada
Hot Together Pointer Sisters -
I Against I Bad Brains -
Leather Jackets Elton John -
Licensed to Ill Beastie Boys -
Medusa Clan of Xymox -
Strange Charm Gary Numan -
Strong Persuader Robert Cray -
Trick or Treat Fastway Soundtrack
The 20 Greatest Christmas Songs Boney M. Compilation/Remix
Utter Madness Madness Compilation
D
E
C
E
M
B
E
R
1 Live Magic Queen Live
5 Anything The Damned -
6 Now That's What I Call Music 8 Various Artists -
8 Hot, Cool & Vicious Salt-N-Pepa -
Mechanical Resonance Tesla -
9 Good Music Joan Jett and the Blackhearts -
16 Electric Café Kraftwerk -
Live ?!*@ Like a Suicide Guns N' Roses Live EP
Chris Isaak Chris Isaak -
Eine Kleine Nachtmusik Venom Live
What Do You Know, Deutschland? KMFDM -

Release date unknown[edit]

Biggest hit singles[edit]

The following songs achieved the highest chart positions in the charts of 1986.

# Artist Title Year Country Chart entries
1 Falco "Rock Me Amadeus" 1986 Austria UK 1 – Mar 1986, US BB 1 – Feb 1986, Canada 1 – Dec 1985, Sweden 1 – Aug 1985, Sweden (alt) 1 – Sep 1985, Austria 1 – May 1985, Germany 1 – Jun 1985, Éire 1 – Apr 1986, New Zealand 1 for 5 weeks Mar 1986, France 2 – Nov 1985, Switzerland 2 – Jun 1985, Netherlands 3 – May 1986, South Africa 3 of 1986, Norway 6 – Apr 1986, Italy 18 of 1985, US CashBox 19 of 1986, Poland 24 – Jun 1985, POP 29 of 1986, US BB 30 of 1986, Germany 50 of the 1980s, RYM 63 of 1985, Scrobulate 65 of 80s, KROQ 74 of 1986
2 Madonna "Papa Don't Preach" 1986 United States UK 1 – Jun 1986, US BB 1 – Jul 1986, Sweden 1 – Aug 1986, Norway 1 – Jul 1986, Italy 1 of 1986, Éire 1 – Jun 1986, Australia 1 for 6 weeks Mar 1987, Netherlands 2 – Jun 1986, Switzerland 2 – Jul 1986, Poland 2 – Aug 1986, Germany 2 – Jul 1986, Austria 4 – Aug 1986, Australia 9 of 1986, US CashBox 18 of 1986, US BB 19 of 1986, POP 35 of 1986, 37 in 2FM list, RYM 43 of 1986, Germany 215 of the 1980s, Acclaimed 761
3 Europe "The Final Countdown" 1986 Sweden UK 1 – Nov 1986, Netherlands 1 – Aug 1986, Sweden 1 – May 1986, Austria 1 – Nov 1986, Switzerland 1 – Sep 1986, Poland 1 – Nov 1986, Germany 1 – Sep 1986, Éire 1 – Nov 1986, Italy 2 of 1987, Norway 4 – Jul 1986, South Africa 7 of 1987, US BB 8 – Feb 1987, France 9 – Apr 1986, Australia 10 of 1987, Europe 14 of the 1980s, US BB 19 of 1987, Scrobulate 20 of Swedish, POP 29 of 1987, Germany 90 of the 1980s, RYM 93 of 1986
4 Berlin "Take My Breath Away" 1986 United States UK 1 – Oct 1986, US BB 1 – Jul 1986, Netherlands 1 – Sep 1986, Sweden 1 – Sep 1986, Éire 1 – Oct 1986, Oscar in 1986, Switzerland 2 – Oct 1986, Germany 3 – Sep 1986, Austria 4 – Nov 1986, Norway 4 – Oct 1986, Poland 4 – Nov 1986, Australia 6 of 1986, POP 7 of 1986, US BB 13 of 1992, RYM 16 of 1986, US CashBox 21 of 1986, Italy 37 of 1986, TOTP 37, Scrobulate 80 of 80s, OzNet 251, Germany 310 of the 1980s
5 Pet Shop Boys "West End Girls" 1985 United Kingdom UK 1 – Nov 1985, US BB 1 – Mar 1986, Norway 1 – Jan 1986, New Zealand 1 for 4 weeks Feb 1986, US CashBox 2 of 1986, Switzerland 2 – Jan 1986, Netherlands 3 – Jan 1986, Sweden 3 – Jan 1986, Germany 3 – Jan 1986, Austria 5 – Feb 1986, France 7 – Oct 1985, KROQ 11 of 1984, Poland 14 – Jan 1986, RYM 15 of 1985, US BB 16 of 1986, South Africa 18 of 1986, Scrobulate 32 of 80s, POP 43 of 1986, Germany 232 of the 1980s, WXPN 478, OzNet 694, Acclaimed 890

Notable hits[edit]

Published popular music[edit]

Classical music[edit]

Opera[edit]

Musical theater[edit]

Musical films[edit]

Musical television[edit]

Music festivals[edit]

Births[edit]

Deaths[edit]

Awards[edit]

Charts[edit]

List of no. 1 hits[edit]

See also[edit]