1980 in music
1979 in music,
other events of 1980,
1981 in music and the
list of 'years in music'.
- January 1 - Cliff Richard is awarded the MBE by Queen Elizabeth II. The only other pop music acts to be awarded the MBE are the Beatles and Elton John
- January 2 - At the age of 45, songwriter Larry Williams[?] is found dead in his Los Angles, California[?] home of a gunshot wound to the head. Investigators are never able to determine whether his death was a murder or suicide.
- January 13 - The Grateful Dead, The Beach Boys and Jefferson Starship perform at a benefit concert at Oakland Coliseum for the people of Kampuchea.
- January 16 - Paul McCartney is arrested in Tokyo for possession of a half pound of marijuana. The remaining part of McCartney's tour had to be canceled.
- January 25 - Paul McCartney is released from a Tokyo jail and is kicked out of the country by Japanese authorities.
- January - Daniel Amos and Randy Stonehill wrap up the first part of the Amos and Randy Tour in Toronto. Both artists are joined on stage by Larry Norman for an encore. The event makes the news on local television and newspapers.
- February 8 - David Bowie and his wife of nearly 10 years, Angie, file for divorce. Bowie gets custody of their 9 year old son, Zowie
- February 14 - Lou Reed marries Sylvia Morales in New York City's Greenwich Village
- February 21 - Bon Scott[?], lead singer of AC/DC, dies in London after choking on his own vomit following an all-night drinking binge.
- February 29 - Buddy Holly's trademark glasses and the Big Bopper's wristwatch are "rediscovered" in old police files by the Mason City Sheriff. Holly and the Big Bopper were killed in a plane crashed on February 3, 1959.
- March 1 - Patti Smith marries former MC5 member Fred Sonic Smith[?]
- March 3 - Sotheby[?]'s Auction house in London auctions off a Rivera Hotel, Las Vegas napkin signed by Elvis Presley for 500 pounds. Other items auctioned included four American dollar bills autographed by the Beatles, for 220 pounds and a collection of personal letters belonging to the Rolling Stones, also for 220 pounds
- March 14 - Record producer Quincy Jones receives a star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame
- March 19 - Elvis Presley's autopsy is subpoened during the trial of Dr. George Nichopoulous, who would later be found guilty of overprescribing drugs to Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis and other clients.
- March 29 - Ronald Selle, wins a lawsuit filed against the Bee Gees, Paramount Pictures and Polygram Records[?]. Selle alleged that the Bee Gees' song "How Deep is Your Love" plagiarized two sections of a song he wrote called "Let it End." The Bee Gees claim they never heard Selle's song. (The Bee Gees successfully appeal the decision in 1983.)
- April 13 - The Broadway musical Grease closes its run of 3,883 performances, making it the longest running show on Broadway up until that time.
- April 14 - A member of the New Jersey State assembly introduces a resolution to make Bruce Springsteen's "Born to Run" the official state song.
- April 17 - As the "official guests of State", Bob Marley and the Wailers perform at Zimbabwe's Independence festival. Marley calls the event the "greatest honor of my life."
- April 30 - The Roger Daltrey film, McVicar, opens in London.
- December - Duran Duran signs with EMI after finalizing its lineup and touring as a support act for Hazel O'Connor[?]
- December 8 - John Lennon is shot and killed outside of his apartment building in New York City.
- The single "Groovy Ghost Show" by Casper[?] is the first recorded hip hop music from Chicago
- Hee Bee Gee Bees release cutting parody of Bee Gees' disco-style single and help greatly to cut short the disco craze in the UK and encourage Gibb brothers to diversify stylistically
- Network Riddum Band[?]'s Breaking Out[?] is the first occurrence of the term rapso[?] as the musical genre continues its popularization
- Seals & Crofts[?] break up
- Mercyful Fate forms
- Minor Threat forms
- The Sisters of Mercy forms
- Phil Collins signs a contract with Atlantic Records after leaving Genesis
- Hüsker Dü forms, and signs a contract with SST Records