Hear Part 2 of Marilyn's Halloween Playlist

October 14, 2020
Marilyn's Halloween PLaylist part 2

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Picking up where I left off with Halloween songs (and after getting some great suggestions by you) I realized…you absolutely can’t do a Halloween playlist without Warren Zevon’s “Werewolves of London.” The song, quite frankly, is incredible all year long, not just in-season! It includes one of the best opening lines ever - “I saw a Werewolf with a Chinese Menu in his hand!” Even more amazing, did you know that it features Fleetwood Mac’s Mick Fleetwood on drums and John McVie on bass? 

Werewolves Of London

The song actually began as a joke by Phil Everly (Everly Brothers)Saying they should do a song called “Werewolf in London” after watching the 1935 film with the same title. So Warren took up the challenge! Jackson Browne loved the song so much, he started including it at his live shows (which were always epic). 

Was it a killer idea or just a novelty song? It sure has stood the test of time…so I say epic idea and killer song! In 1986 the song was used in a classic scene in “The Color of Money,” where Tom Cruise dances and lip-syncs while playing pool. Okay, that’s just so cool! 

 

Another fav is “Ghost Town,” a song by the British two-tone band, The Specials, released in June of 1981. While the themes address urban decay, deindustrialisation, unemployment and violence in inner cities; more popular social commentary than just ‘trick or treat’, it’s become a Halloween staple. The band was headed toward a break up and their music reflected their unhappiness with the use of weird diminished chords, which gave the song dark overtones. In spite of its darkness, the song wound up being named “Single of the Year” by Melody Maker, NME, and Sounds in the UK. It’s actually having a thematic resurgence on streaming platforms during our Covid-19 lockdown, especially in the UK. If you’ve ever seen Guy Ritchie’s film “Snatch”, it’s used brilliantly there. And if you haven’t you should…it’s a fav movie!  “Ghost Town” is definitely going to sound great on your Halloween playlist.

Ghost Town- The Specials

 

Finally, you’ve got to include some Philly flavor on your Halloween soundtrack, right? 

May I recommend The Hooters “All You Zombies'' and the one, the only, DJ Jazzy Jeff and Fresh Prince  “Nightmare on My Street!”  Will Smith looks so young and adorable in the video. I honestly wish he stayed a rapper…but his Acting career certainly took hold. The song was supposed to be included in the movie “A Nightmare on Elm Street 4,” but producers decided to leave it off. The Lawsuit between the group and New Line Cinema was scarier than the song and the movie. 

All You Zombies- The Hooters

A Nightmare On My Street - DJ Jazzy Jeff and The fresh Prince

Okay, on the Part Deux list - this one for me is the piece de resistance: Oingo Boingo’s “Dead Man’s Party”! The song is an homage to an Urban Legend story from 1906 and has become a Halloween favorite, especially for your dance jams.  In the late 80’s, I lived in Cali, and it was an annual concert event seeing Oingo Boingo on Halloween…kind of like the Hooter’s always do a Thanksgiving concert, Oingo Boingo always did a Halloween concert. Danny Elfman is a genius songwriter, composer, and has gone on to do tons of soundtracks for movies you know and love like Beetlejuice, Batman, Edward Scissorhands, Spiderman 3 and Tim Burton’s “Corpse Bride”, to name a few. But Danny will always be remembered for this absolute Halloween party gem.

Deadman's Party- Oingo Boingo

In pop culture, the song showed up in a crazy amount of 80’s movies and was used brilliantly in a “Malcolm in the Middle” Halloween special! What I wouldn’t give to see Oingo Boingo one more time! Those shows were epic and so were the people watching…everyone pulled out the stops in various Halloween costumes. 

 

Let us know your favorite Halloween song on Twitter: @WOGL