Monday, October 26, 2015

Tales from the Darkside - “Main Theme”: 31 Days for Halloween Music

Tales From the Darkside was a fun horror themed TV show in the vein of Twilight Zone and The Outer Limits. There were some great episodes that are classics among fans of the show. "The Closet", "The Circus" and "Anniversary Dinner" are among them.

I've read that George Romero originally wanted to do the show as a Creepshow, television show, but Warner Bros. had the rights to that name or something like that so they ended up doing it as "Darkside"

I’d bet there will be at least a couple of people at your Halloween party that will perk up when this track comes on.

Man lives in the sunlit world
of what he believes to be reality.
But, there is, unseen by most, an underworld,
a place that is just as real,
but not as brightly lit.....

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Wee Sing for Halloween - “Have You Seen the Ghost of John?”: 31 Days for Halloween Music

Today's track is called "Have You Seen the Ghost of John?" from the Wee Sing music catalog and their album called "Wee Sing for Halloween", which quite honestly has some real gems on it. It's definitely geared for young kids, but there are some really excellent tracks such as this one I absolutely love. The kids run through the songs lyrics twice as a group, then they go back through the song as individuals with each kid starting the song just a few lines after the kid before him. It's done so excellently and gives it an even more haunting vibe. The music is great too. Unfortunately I couldn't find it on youtube, so  I have a link below that will take you to a site that has a nice high quality version snippet to give you a small sense of the track. Enjoy!

Have You Seen the Ghost of John? audio snippet.

"Have you seen the ghost of John?
Long white bones with the skin all gone
Oooh, Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh
Wouldn't it be chilly with no skin on?"

Monday, October 19, 2015

The Elm Street Group Ft. Robert Englund - “Don’t Sleep”: 31 Days for Halloween Music

If it's not apparent by now I'm a huge Freddy Krueger fan as this is now the third song that is connected to him in some way. This particular track is exceptional as its from the album "Freddy's Greatest Hits" released in 1987. This albums existence is a testament as to how huge Freddy's popularity was at that time. (Not to say he's not popular now, but this was Freddy's heyday).

The album is credited to be by the Elm Street Group, who I have always believed was a group of very talented studio musicians and producers. I'm not digging for the info on this one, as I like this belief I concocted since I was a little kid and first got this album. There are a mix of cover songs and original stuff. The original tracks such as the one I have for you here are among my favorites. Best of all Robert Englund actually appears on the songs in his Freddy persona. He doesn't sing at all, but just add lines and laughter to the track but that's really all I want. It keeps the music on a more serious plane and works best. I think if Robert had been on there singing and carrying on it wouldn't have been good. This particular track his lines just add this classic Freddy spookiness to the music.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Ozzy Osbourne- “Bark at the Moon”: 31 Days for Halloween Music

Now we take a trip back to the 80s, one of my favorite eras and where many of the songs I've been posting about originate. Here is Ozzy Osbourne on the title track from his 1983 album "Bark at the Moon". The song speaks to a man becoming a monster and wreaking havoc on some town. He's apparently killed, but rises from the grave as the creature. The video for the most part keeps this story going, but it seems to have a Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde vibe going on, except instead of transforming into Hyde, Ozzy's character becomes the werewolf creature you see above. You don't need to know what Ozzy is saying... he says "Bark at the Moon" plenty of times for even the most casual listener to get werewolves on their brain.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Donny Lee - “Skunk Ape”: 31 Days of Halloween Music

Here is a weird track I came across in the summer of 2011, called "Skunk Ape" by an artist by the name of Donny Lee. This tune easily is in my top 20 favorites of my Halloween playlist. I love the vibe of the track and it's just so weird and interesting. . It was released in 1985 on record (vinyl) in what appears to be a single version. I don't know much about this artist or release. The song details the singer's true or made-up events of him learning about and experiencing a Skunk Ape situation. The Skunk Ape is believed to be a southern American Sasquatch type of creature. The name comes from what people claim is an awful smell it has. This song has just that right magic to easily have appeared in some bad 80s B-movie about an abominable creature.

It's a 80s country sounding tune, which is not something I'd normally listen to, but for this track it's a perfect genre to perform a weird tune like this. If you are into weird monster themed songs I highly recommend this gem.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Creedence Clearwater Revival - “Bad Moon Rising
31 Days of Halloween Music

Today's track has been a favorite and long time member of my Halloween playlist. "Bad Moon Rising" a hit for Creedence Clearwater Revival was expertly used in the 1981 horror film An American Werewolf in London. The track gets a good amount of playtime in the film as it plays over a montage of the character David hanging around Alex's apartment. He's very restless and can't really understand why. We the viewer know to a degree what's up with him. The lyrics fit the film for the most part about the moon rising and something bad coming.

An American Werewolf in London - Bad Moon Rising Scene - Video Dailymotion

Monday, October 12, 2015

Dokken - “Dream Warriors" (Song)
31 Days of Halloween Music

Here is yet another of those favorites of mine. A song written for and based on a specific horror film. In this case it's Dokken's song "Dream Warriors" from the 1987 film "A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors". This is the same year we saw and heard the Alice Cooper track "He's Back" from "Friday the 13th part VI". It was a an excellent year for horror films and the music they spawned, kids! Dokken was from the genre of 80s metal/hair metal bands. Where they hardcore, hell I don't know? Bigger connoisseurs of the genre can debate that one. What I do know is this is a bad ass Freddy centric track. The video shows Dokken performing and clips are cut in from the film which I always enjoy. The stage sets Dokken appears on are reminiscent of locations we see in the film which is visually pretty cool and helps to bridge the gap between Dokken's footage and the film footage. There is some minor original footage of Robert Englund as Freddy at the end of the video which is cool. Give it a listen, chances are that chorus will stick with you long into the night.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

The Monsters - "Monsters Go Disco" (song)
31 Days of Halloween Music

Here is a weird little track the General Mills company put out to promote their Monster Cereals brand. It's a hip-hop remix of a video they put out in 1979. This new version has a hip-hop dance beat and samples musical elements and voices from that 1979 production in a very successful way. It's not a masterpiece of music, but it's catchy as hell. You'll see after listening to it, that chorus will be stuck in your head. The song features the big three characters, Boo Berry, Frankeberry and Count Chocula.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Addict - "Monsterside" (Song)
31 Days of Halloween Music

Today's musical selection comes from the 1998 "teen" horror/sci-fi film Disturbing Behavior. The song is called "Monster Side" by the band Addict. It has a very 90s alternative rock type of sound as was popular with the kids in that day. Admittedly I haven't seen the movie. I've been meaning to watch it going on damn near 20 yrs. Upon researching the song and movie a little more the movie looks more interesting than I had originally thought. I think knowing Katie Holmes was in it, I was worried it would be a little too Dawson's Creek-esque, but the trailer does make it look like it could be an interesting tale. The track itself with the chorus of "I just can't hide my monster side" fits nicely into the Halloween mix. The track speaks to the films story, but it plays even more generic for anyone that might become some other kind of creature of the night. Also, will also give you a decent sounding 90s rock track to the mix.

Here is the original trailer from 1998 for the flick.

Rachel: "Gavin thinks some sinister force has taken over the Cradle Bay meatheads."
Steve: "A sinister force?"
Rachel: "You know, evil. Nowhere to turn, no one to trust, altogether ooky."

Friday, October 09, 2015

The Advantage - “Castlevania Intro & Stage 1(Song)”
31 Days of Halloween Music

Today's track is a cover of the Intro and Stage 1 music from the classic NES video game Castlevania. This game was one of my favorites from the NES video game era. A warrior, Simon Belmont, battling through various areas of Dracula's castle fighting all manner of monsters. Konami scored a huge hit with this one. The game, graphics, and music were spectacular for the time. Now of course the game looks dated, but the music I don't feel is dated, it's as awesome as ever. This track I have for you is from the band The Advantage who do covers of old NES video game music. They have a very rough garage band sound to them, but that's a good thing. I really enjoy this cover they've done putting a rock spin on the game's awesome Stage 1 theme.

"Beyond the twisted iron gates of Castlevania there lurks an unearthly terror who stalks the night in search of revenge... and blood."

Thursday, October 08, 2015

Michel Rubini - "The Hitchhiker (main theme)" (Song)
31 Days of Halloween Music

I've been posting a lot of pop/rock related tracks so I'm switching gears to pull up a classic soundtrack score piece here. As, was my goal with these posts is to suggest some great music that's not the more well known or remembered music. There have been many anthology tv series over the years and some like the Twilight Zone and it's theme are quite well known and I highly recommend it for a Halloween playlist, but I'm digging a little deeper with this one. Here is the main theme to the 1980s HBO mystery anthology series "The Hitchhiker". This song always had a real spooky mysterious sound to it along with the visuals of said Hitchhiker walking around out in some desolate desert highway.

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

3-Speed - "Once Bitten" (Song)
31 Days of Halloween Music

Today I have for you the musical stylings of 80s pop band 3-Speed. They performed the title track to the 1985 horror/comedy film Once Bitten. The film stars Jim Carrey in what I believe is his first major/starring role. Lauren Hutton also stars as a vampire with her eyes set on Jim's character as he is a virgin and to continue her immortality she must have his blood. Now back to the music. 3-Speed's track is really enjoyable, especially by my 80s pop music standards. It's quite a catchy track and one that's been in my Halloween playlist for nearly 9 years. If you are looking for more upbeat tracks for your playlist, you can't lose with this one. Also, it might spark some party conversation about this at least to me more forgotten horror/comedy from the 80s. Check out the video below, it features 3-Speed performing and scenes from the motion picture.

Robin: "Mark doesn't want you because you're mean and evil. He wants me because I am nice and sweet and pure, so fuck off!"

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Alice Cooper - “He’s Back (The Man Behind the Mask)” (Song)
31 Days of Halloween Music

Here is one of my favorite tracks taken from/used for a specific horror film. This song was the theme song to the 1986 film "Friday the 13th part VI: Jason Lives". I love it because it's more than just a subtle reference to Jason or slasher films in general. It's specifically talking about Jason and the verses speak to familiar scenarios seen or to a degree what the public consciousness thought these films portrayed. It even includes an interpolation of Harry Manfredini's "ki ki ki ma ma ma" heard throughout the majority of the Friday films. Alice's brand of rock music, especially at that time really fit with the slasher horror film. This track was also Alice's lead single on his album "Constrictor" released the same year. The video is fun because it shows Alice doing his stage thing, but also cutting in clips from "Jason Lives" which back in 1986 was the only way I was seeing anything regarding the film outside of seeing it in the theater. I always had to wait for VHS release or edited for TV versions.

Monday, October 05, 2015

Misfits - "Dig Up Her Bones" (Song)
31 Days of Halloween Music

This track I really dig around the Halloween season, it has the right amount of rock, horror/spooky related lyrics.It's quite catchy. This song gets a lot of play from me during the month of October. Admittedly I'm not a big Misfits band fan. This is probably one of  two songs I like from them, the other being "Halloween". This song was released with the new band line-up after Danzig left and they reformed. Hell, let me just share with you the info I found on Wikipedia regarding this song. No need for me to re-invent the wheel with this trivia for you

"Dig Up Her Bones" is the seventh single by the horror punk band the Misfits. It was the first single released by the re-formed lineup of the band after the original incarnation broke up in 1983. It was the only single released from their 1997 album "American Psycho", and the accompanying music video was the first official Misfits music video ever released.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

Cheap Trick - “Gonna Raise Hell” (Song)
31 Days of Halloween Music

Today's musical selection on the surface my not seem very fitting to the Halloween theme I'm running with. Sure the song title has "hell" in it, but upon first listen you may not see why I'm associating it with Halloween. It's inclusion to my playlist completely plays on it appearing in the Halloween episode of the "Freaks & Geeks" TV series. The episode is called "Tricks and Treats", the song makes it's appearance when the the "geeks" of the show are getting into their Halloween costumes. It's a great soundtrack inclusion to the scene. After hearing it there I completely associate this track with the Halloween season. Musically it's not spooky or anything, but they do keep saying "hell" over and over and it's association with this episode made it a great addition to my playlist. It's definitely going to add some classic rock to the mix which isn't a bad thing.

Saturday, October 03, 2015

Etienne & Moi - “Shower with Norman Bates”
31 Days of Halloween Music

Here is a song that clearly from the title begs to be among many a Halloween / horror pop music themed playlist. This song was in a fellow blogger, Vinnie Rattolle mix of halloween/horror related pop music. It was on volume 1 of his “It’s Only a Movie” Halloween compilation he put for download 8 years ago or so. I’d give you more insight into the band, but oddly I couldn’t find too much about them online. Perhaps I wasn’t digging enough, nevertheless I recommend you check it out. Despite the title it’s not an overly gory or violent lyrically. It sounds more like a love song which I feel makes it a great addition to a playlist that spans all kinds of genres.

Friday, October 02, 2015

Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs - "Lil' Red Riding Hood"
31 Days of Halloween Music

This song “Lil Red Riding Hood” I stumbled across about a year ago. It was released in 1966 by the group Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs. It’s definitely got the 60s pop music sound going on as you’ll hear. The topic is Little Red Riding Hood and Sam sings from the perspective of being the wolf. I don’t know if there is any deeper meaning beyond that, but I found it’s tone and sound fits in perfect with my Halloween mix. Give it a listen and get your mind into a spooky place and I will bet you’ll love it too.

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Donovan - "Season of the Witch" (Song)
31 Days of Halloween Music

I thought the first track of my "31 Days of Halloween Music" posts should be this 1966 song, "Season of the Witch", by psychedelic rock artist Donovan. I feel like it captures a feeling of the season that I hope all the songs I post about have. I actually first heard it about 6 years ago or so on a podcast Kevin Smith did. He had it at the end or beginning of a pod where they talked about witches and warlocks. I thought it was an excellent track and it quickly was added to my ongoing Halloween playlist.

"Season of the Witch" is an early example of psychedelic rock, written by Donovan and first released in September 1966 on his Epic Records (USA) album, Sunshine Superman.