’80s Television Theme Songs: Sitcoms, Part 1

Remember when television theme songs were more than a few seconds? They showed the premise of the show and introduced the starring characters. Sure, some of them may have been corny (especially on some sitcoms), but the opening theme was just about as good as the show itself. This week, let’s Return to the ’80s, and enjoy some awesome theme songs that we miss. There are so, so many that we can’t possibly have them all in one post. Instead, we will make this a series this week, and break it up into different categories.

Today, we will start with sitcoms. Again, there are so many great sitcom themes that there will be multiple sitcom posts. So if it looks like there are some missing, chances are that they will be covered later in the week. These are listed in no particular order.

Happy Days
The original song was Bill Haley’s “Rock Around The Clock”. Then from 1976 through 1984 the show had its own original song written by television theme writers Norman Gimbel and Charles Fox, who also wrote the themes for Wonder Woman, Laverne and Shirley, and Love Boat. The song was sung by Jerry McClain and Truett Pratt, who were also known as Brother Love.

Golden Girls

This song was “Thank You for Being a Friend”, and was written by written by Andrew Gold. It was actually a #25 hit on the Billboard charts in 1978. You can see him perform it here.
The television theme version was recorded by Cynthia Fee (who is also known for her 1984 duet with Kenny Rogers, “I Don’t Want To Know Why“).

The Facts of Life

“The Facts of Life” theme was written by Growing Pains dad Alan Thicke, Days of Our Lives star Gloria Loring and Al Burton, and was sung by Gloria Loring.

Silver Spoons

The show’s theme song titled “Together” was written by Rik Howard and Bob Wirth. It was sung by The Archies’ alumni Ron Dante.

Punky Brewster

This theme song is “Every Time I Turn Around”, and was written by Gary Portnoy and Judy Hart Angelo and sung by Portnoy. Here is the version from seasons 3 and 4. To see the first season version, check out the Punk Brewster article from May 6 .

Charles in Charge

There were 2 versions of this song, even though the lyrics were the same. They are both good.

Season 1:

The rest of the seasons:

The Jeffersons

This song is “Movin’ on Up” and was written by Jeff Barry and Ja’net Dubois, and performed by Dubois. I dare to not move your hands or feet to this song!

Diff’rent Strokes

Like it’s spin-off, The Facts of Life, this song was written by Alan Thicke, Gloria Loring and Al Burton. This was sung by Alan Thicke.

Growing Pains

This song is “As Long As We Got Each Other,” sung by B.J. Thomas and Jennifer Warnes, and was written by Steve Dorff and John Bettis.
B.J. Thomas had hit songs such as “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on My Head,” and “Whatever Happened to Old-Fashioned Love“. Jennifer Warnes was a very successful duet singer as she had hits with “Up Where We Belong” (with Joe Cocker, from the 1982 film An Officer and a Gentleman) and “(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life” (with Bill Medley from the 1987 film Dirty Dancing).

And here’s a full version of the song:

Cheers

This is “Where Everybody Knows Your Name”, and was written by Gary Portnoy (who also wrote and performed the Punky Brewster theme) and Judy Hart Angelo and performed by Portnoy. I like the long version. The short version usually gets played for the reruns now.

Does anybody else have any favorites? There are more to come this week. In addition to more sitcoms, there are action/adventure theme songs as well as nighttime soaps, and dramas.

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2 thoughts on “’80s Television Theme Songs: Sitcoms, Part 1”

  1. I think the Growing Pains and Jeffersons theme songs were my favorite from today’s bunch. Didn’t watch Punky Brewster, so that was a new one for me. Can’t wait to hear the next set!

    Like

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