Boys and girls of every age, wouldn’t you like a funky and freaky Halloween playlist on this old Hallows Eve? To kick off the Halloween festivities as October comes to a close here are ten songs to start off your playlist for the perfect spooky night.
The Citizens Of Halloween Town – ‘This Is Halloween’
Beginning the playlist with a classic that it would be a crime not to include. ‘This Is Halloween’ is possibly the ultimate Halloween anthem celebrating everything scary and weird in a joyous chorus of monstrous voices. This quirky song was written and composed by Danny Elfman for Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, directed by Henry Sellick and released in 1993. Setting loose the weird and wonderful creatures inside Tim Burton’s mind to celebrate their loveable monstrosity to the tune of Danny Elfman’s musical genius. Change it up a bit by listening to Marilyn Mason’s awesome and even creepier cover or maybe that is just me trying to put the song on the playlist twice…
Donavon – ‘Season Of The Witch’
A darkly sensual tune that will have you breaking out the cauldron and assembling the voodoo dolls, ‘Season Of The Witch’ is the only way to truly honour the spooky season. Released in 1966 and written by Donovan and Shawn Phillips, the track is a perfect example of psychedelic rock. Infused with warping tones and continuous haunting guitar, the song has been covered multiple times by the likes of Julie Driscoll and Brain Auger and the Trinity, Terry Reid and alternative rock band Luna. Leaving a plentiful harvest to choose from.
Panic! At The Disco – ‘It’s Almost Halloween’
Back in 2008 Panic! At The Disco celebrated their love of Halloween by releasing the single ‘It’s Almost Halloween’ alongside a questionable but none the less hilarious music video. The Beatles-esque track is a head bobbing tune that will most likely be quite helpful when your head is swimming for those apples. A completely fun infused song with the underlying story of a Halloween one night stand, ‘It’s Almost Halloween’ takes you through the common rituals of Halloween and makes sure you get out the other end, even if you are a little worse for wear. Plus, the guys manage to create a simple but memorable dance you can spend the night doing with your friends!
Screamin’ Jay Hawkins – ‘I Put A Spell On You’
Partying hard for Halloween even in 1956, Jay Hawkins released ‘I Put A Spell On You’ and we have all remained under his magical influence ever since. Ranked #313 on Rolling Stone’s list of The 500 Greatest Songs Of All Time, the rock blues tune has cast a spell over listeners and artists alike. Leading to more covers than can be counted but here are just a few: Annie Lennox, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Bonnie Tyler and Nina Simone. The rough vocals of the original are enough to put anyone in a spooky mood and ready for some serious Samhain celebration.
Michael Jackson – ‘Thriller’
Not even a song exclusively for Halloween, ‘Thriller’ is possibly one of the most famous songs in the world with over 400,000,000 views on Youtube and a choreography all its own. The release of ‘Thriller’ in 1982 solidified Michael Jackson’s career as the King of Pop and immortalized him in his iconic red outfit. One I can guarantee you will see replicas of this Halloween, as is always the case every year. Creating a classic horror story with both music video and lyrics, ‘Thriller’ embodies everything old school about Halloween and cannot be ignored when creating a Halloween playlist. Time to brush off the old dance moves because ‘it’s thriller!’
The Rocky Horror Picture Show – ‘Time Warp’
It truly is astounding that ‘Time Warp’ is not part of more people’s everyday playlists, no matter Halloween! Coming into creation in 1975 with the release of Richard O’Brien’s The Rocky Horror Picture Show, ‘Time Warp’ has everything you could ask for from a Halloween song. A cheesy 80s sound filled to the brim the nostalgia and an easy to follow dance you can’t help but preform when the lyrics demand. You’ll be doing the ‘Time Warp’ again and again, enough that maybe you won’t need the rest of this playlist…
Bobby Pickett – ‘Monster Mash’
Rivalling ‘This Is Halloween’ for the title of Halloween Anthem, Bobby Pickett’s ‘Monster Mash’ is another classic spooky, kooky song combining all the monsters who thrive during October. A pliant, pleasant song celebrating the original beings of our childhood nightmares. Embodying everything that made music in the 60s, ‘Monster Mash’ is a milkshake melody with dark undertones.
Ray Parker Jr. – ‘Ghostbusters’
Much like The Rocky Horror Picture Show, the 80s classic Ghostbusters would not be the same without its wicked soundtrack. A soundtrack containing the iconic ‘Ghostbusters’ theme tune recognisable from the first few tumbling notes before exploding into the song we could all sing in our sleep. Another one for fun and pure enjoyment, ‘Ghostbusters’ has been covered by the likes of Fall Out Boy and still remains one of the most loved songs of all time.
Avenged Sevenfold – ‘Nightmare’
Taking a deep delve into darker territory, ‘Nightmare’ is a twisted tune guaranteed to liven up any Halloween party even if most of the residents resemble the dead. A tune of epic proportions and Avenged Sevenfold’s most famous song, it’s a Halloween song that wasn’t even written with Halloween in mind. Exploring the fragile state of the human mind, ‘Nightmare’ will drag you down to a depth of musical enjoyment you didn’t even knew existed as you party your night away. A beautiful combination of hard and soft rock that leaves an eerie edge and creates the perfect atmosphere.
Rihanna – ‘Disturbia’
Halloween is celebrated in different ways all over the world so it only makes sense for different genres of music to celebrate it as well. The last thing people would have expected from R&B princess Rihanna in 2007 was a down right disturbing song, rightfully named. But what wasn’t surprising was how the artist was able to take a genre of music she was not familiar with and combine it with one she is an expert in to create ‘Disturbia.’ A continuously thumping beat throughout the song echoes that of a heartbeat and this song will have yours racing faster and faster. The high pitch in vocals Rihanna uses combined with the dark and sometimes uncomfortable lyrics are enough to make ‘Disturbia’ a Halloween playlist must.
So, there are just a few songs to start off your Halloween playlist but if you’re still dying for more here are some you can explore on your own. Just remember to keep the lights turned on…
The Rocky Horror Picture Show – ‘Sweet Transvestite’
Duran, Duran – ‘Hungry Like The Wolf’
Lady Gaga – ‘Teeth’ and ‘Monster’
Florence and the Machine – ‘Seven Devils’
Panic! At The Disco – ‘Nearly Witches’
Five Finger Death Punch – ‘Jekyll and Hyde’
Iron Maiden – ‘The Number Of The Beast’
Evanescence – ‘Bring Me To Life’
Fleetwood Mac – ‘Black Magic Woman’
Eminem ft. Rihanna – ‘The Monster’
Stevie Wonder – ‘Superstitious’
Rockwell – ‘Somebody’s Watching Me’
Frank Sinatra – ‘Witchcraft’
Love Spit Love – ‘How Soon Is Now?’
David Bowie – ‘Scary Monsters’
Radiohead – ‘Creep’
The Cranberries – ‘Zombie’
Meatloaf – ‘Bat Out Of Hell’
Alice Cooper – ‘Poison’
Marilyn Mason – ‘Tainted Love’
By Skye W.Winwood