In the music
- Motown's 25th Anniversary aired on TV. The star-studded event included reunions of Diana Ross and the Supremes and the Jackson 5. Michael performed his infamous moonwalk. It became the season's top rated music special and won an Emmy for outstanding music program.
- Diana Ross performed in NYC's Central Park in the pouring rain.
- Run DMC released their debut single It's Like That/Sucker MCs. Run DMC were the first group to take hip hop to the mainstream. They were the first to be on the cover of Rolling Stone and the first to have a video played on MTV.
- Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five released the anti-drug anthem White Lines.
- New Edition released Candy Girl, which topped the US RnB chart. Featuring future solo-star and Whitney Houston-husband Bobby Brown, the group pioneered the fusion of hip hop and RnB to be called new jack swing.