Top 10 Comeback Songs

Script Written by Q.V Hough. Oh, hey – remember me? Join WatchMojo.com as we count count down our picks for the Top 10 Comeback Songs. For this list, we are looking at musical artists that returned from a significant absence or those who re-invented themselves after commercial failures. These artists managed to escape their slump by releasing a killer track that regained audiences' attention. Special thanks to our users SuperStarMuffin and Sandiee for submitting the idea on our Suggestions Page at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Script Written by Q.V Hough.

Top 10 Comeback Songs


Oh, hey – remember me? Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Comeback Songs.

For this list, we are looking at musical artists that returned from a significant absence or those who re-invented themselves after commercial failures.

#10: “We Belong Together” (2005)
Mariah Carey

If you’re familiar with the 2001 film “Glitter,” then it won’t come as a surprise to understand why Mariah Carey’s career took a dip in the years after the film’s release. Her 2002 album Charmbracelet bombed with a capital B, but the diva recomposed herself and delivered a smash hit in 2005 with “We Belong Together.” The slow jam about lost love became the second longest number one song EVER and put a cap on the lost time known as “The Glitter Era.”

#9: “I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That)” (1993)
Meat Loaf

Once an understudy of John Belushi on Broadway, Marvin Lee Aday aka Meat Loaf released one of rock’s classic albums in 1977 with Bat Out of Hell. Sixteen years later, the singer wasn’t exactly a hot commodity of the music industry, but one monster ballad from Bat Out of Hell II: Back Into Hell changed everything. With a classic video and constant air play, “I’d Do Anything For Love” reached #1 in 28 countries, including England where it became the longest song since The Beatles’ “Hey Jude” to top the charts. Not a bad comeback.

#8: “If I Could Turn Back Time” (1989)
Cher

For over 25 years, Cher had been in the public eye, and naturally her career had seen many ups and downs. By the early 80s, her career reached a stopping point, which paved the way for a successful run as an actress. And then POOF – 1989 brought fishnets, a new album and the powerhouse single called “If I Could Turn Back Time.” Although the catchy tune never reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100, it became a staple of pop culture over the years and even earned Cher a cameo on “Will and Grace.” Of course, she had another comeback hit almost a decade later with “Believe.” The comeback queen.

#7: “Thunderstruck” (1990)
AC/DC

Formed in 1973, Australian rock band AC/DC melted faces for years until the untimely death of lead singer Bon Scott in 1980. Even then, the musicians continued on with replacement Brian Johnson but had slight commercial difficulty through the decade. But AC/DC once again shocked the world in 1990 with a thrashing new album and energetic single called “Thunderstruck.” The opening riffs are now unmistakable and have inspired some of the best air guitar performances the world has ever seen. Behold the power of Angus Young.

#6: “Can’t Get You Outta My Head” (2001)
Kylie Minogue

As a former Australian soap star turned chart-topping performer, Kyle Minogue knows how to make an entrance. But what happens when the door slams shut? By the late 90s, Minogue’s musical productions became “commercially challenged. However she managed to reinvent herself, Madonna-style, and released a highly-addictive single called “Can’t Get You Outta My Head.” With an eye-popping music video and unforgettable chorus, Kyle Minogue’s comeback resulted in one of the best-selling singles of all-time. It’s all in the title.

#5: “Still D.R.E.” (1999)
Dr. Dre

Aww yeeeah. This Compton-born rapper released one of the definitive west coast rap albums with 1992’s “The Chronic” but left everybody without a dope beat to step to for years after. But just before the dawn of a new millennium, Dr. Dre teamed up with his old pal Snoop Dogg and released “Still D.R.E.” – the lead single for his sophomore effort. Truly a pop-culture event, Dre took us on a ride with a relentless beat and reintroduced himself as one of the surviving kings of hip-hop. It’s still D-R-E.

#4: “Get Lucky” (2013)
Daft Punk

Eight years after releasing the album Human After All, Daft Punk enlisted Pharrell Williams and Niles Rodgers for one of the most successful songs of all-time. “Get Lucky” was the standout track off the Grammy Award-winning album Random Access Memories and reached the Top 10 in 32 countries. Almost immediately, “Get Lucky” became a classic cover song and source for hilarious parodies, but the track’s funky groove never gets old. To cap off Daft Punk’s phenomenal comeback, the Russian Interior Ministry Choir performed “Get Lucky” at the opening ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics.

#3: “Tears in Heaven” (1992)
Eric Clapton

As one of the most brilliant guitarists of all-time, Eric Clapton enjoyed tremendous success early in his career but fell on hard times during the mid-80s. After releasing the well-received 1989 albumJourneyman, the musician had to cope with the tragic death of his 4-year old son. As a result, Clapton composed the heart-breaking “Tears in Heaven,” which allowed him to confront his pain in the best way he knew how. The song won three Grammy Awards, but Clapton later decided to close out a dark chapter in his life and removed “Tears in Heaven” from live performance set lists.

#2: “Smooth” (1999)
Santana feat. Rob Thomas

In 1992, Santana’s album Milagro peaked at 102 on the charts, but seven years later, they reached #1 with this scorching collaboration with Matchbox 20’s Rob Thomas. Released one week into summer, the opening lyrics set the stage for a complete conquest of radio airplay. “Smooth” ultimately spent 12 weeks at number one and gave Carlos Santana his biggest hit since “Black Magic Woman.” While many rock legends his age disappeared years prior, the supernatural shaman continued to shine in smooth fashion.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

“Walk This Way” (1986)
Run-D.M.C. feat. Steven Tyler and Joe Perry

“Californication” (2000)
Red Hot Chili Peppers

“You Rock My World” (2001)
Michael Jackson

“Patience” (2006)
Take That

“Ordinary World” (1992)
Duran Duran

“Womanizer” (2008)
Britney Spears

#1: “Hurt” (2003)
Johnny Cash

Well, you probably didn’t see this one coming - in 2002 that is. After an almost 50 years in the music industry, Johnny Cash shocked the world by covering Nine Inch Nails’ 1995 single “Hurt.” With arguably one of the most powerful music videos of all time, Johnny Cash offered a stripped-down approach as clips of his extraordinary career accompanied the track. Just months after filming, both Johnny Cash and his wife would pass away, but this unforgettable comeback song reminded listeners of all they accomplished through over the years.

So, do you agree with our selections? What is your favorite comeback song? For more mind-blowing Top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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